Sunday, August 21, 2005

Mets Blow Eight Run Lead on Saturday, Take Series Against Nationals

Talk about a roller coaster weekend. Friday we had a classic pitchers dual. Jae Seo was once again nearly unhittable as he threw eight shutout innings and gave up only four hits. All that, and he didn't have a lead until the seventh inning when Victor Diaz drove home Ramon Castro for the only run of the game. Mike Piazza was still absent after fracturing his hand. Jose Reyes went four for four with three stolen bases.

Then came Saturday. I'm so glad at times that I live out of town. I probably would have been watching this game on TV and would have destroyed that television at some point in time in the ninth inning. The Mets rushed out to an eight run lead after three innings with three big homers. Ramon Castro and David Wright hit three run shots and Jose Reyes had a two run homer. Pedro Martinez cruised through six innings, and in what was a smart move, pulled him after 78 pitches with a nice comfortable eight run lead.

Ahem. Danny Graves comes in and gives up five runs, two hits and two walks while getting only one guy out. Jose Reyes' throwing error only helped Graves out in the statistical category because four of those five runs were unearned. By the time the Nationals were done, the Mets had a two run lead.

And that disappeared in the ninth. Brandon Looper gave up a two run double in the ninth, and before you knew it, the Mets were in extra frames. I would have liked to be in Pedro's head while all of this was going down. Fortunately this story has a happy ending. In the bottom of the tenth, Chris Woodward singled home Gerald Williams, and the Mets walked away with a win. One they may not have deserved, but a win none the less.

Today, Kris Benson got shelled. He'd been as good as you'd want out from your number two guy, but he gave up six runs on eight hits before getting pulled with two outs in the first. Pinch hitter Mike Jacobs made his major league debut by hitting a three run homer and we'd score another run in the ninth, but this game was over with early. Jacobs was called up because Mike Piazza was put on the disabled list.

No Mike Cameron, and now we'll be without Piazza for at least another week and change. The news keeps getting worse. The good news is, we're only three games out of the Wild Card. We still have four teams in front of us, but we're not out of it yet. And if we can bridge that gap, the NL East title might be within reach because we only trail the Braves by six games, and they're losing to the Padres tonight.

It's also not a good time to start a west coast (sort of) swing. We travel to Arizona to play four so we'll have to contend with the heat. Then we go to Pac Bell for three. Neither of these teams are particularly good, but whenever you travel like that, it's an uphill battle.


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