Saturday, October 14, 2006
So if there's one thing I'm nervous about heading into tonights Game 3, it's Pujols. Pujols is 5 for 14 (.357) against Trachs this season, plus 5 walks, though just one extra base hit and no homers. Look for Preston Wilson to be in the lineup tonight, Mookie's stepson is hitting .400 (8 for 20) against Trax, including 3 homeruns. Luckily, Trachs has been pretty successful at keeping the rest of the Redbirds' bats in check for the most part.
Jeff Suppan (12-7, 4.12 ERA) is on the hill for the Cardinals tonight, and if you've been waiting for Valentin to have a breakout night, your best bet might be this evening against Suppan. Valentin, "The Other Jose," has 4 homeruns and 9 RBI's off Suppan in 48 at bats. Meanwhile Delgado's just 6 for 29 (.207), and Beltrans' just 2 for 11 (.182). Dookie however, is 6 for 16 (.375) and Endy Chavez is 5 for 14 (.357). Stats are stats of course, and we'll just have to see how the wind blows tonight.
I really can't complain too much McCarver and Buck. They were atrocious during the regular season FOX games, but their analysis hasn't been horrible thus far in the NLCS. I can only assume this is because Buck has somewhat of a clue about the Cardinals because of his work doing local games for St. Louis. Buck's knowledge about the Cardinals makes the pair 25% more knowledgeable compared to when they normally call a contest between two clubs.
Okay, Lets Go Mets Already!
Friday, October 13, 2006
"He was very good. I thought we barely got our bats on the ball but we caught a few breaks. I say he was fantastic. We're just grateful to have had the opportunity to share the field with him. That's it. He did some amazing things, like he always does. Throw a changeup away, a slider in the dirt, a fastball, a slurve, a cutter, a screwball, a splitter, a spitter, a knuckleball, a laredo, an eefus. I just don't think we could've done a better job than we did against that very good pitcher John Maine. So he gave up a few hits and some walks. He can't make a mistake? He's perfect?”
My good friend Scott, who is a tremendous Mets fan, HATES Mr. Met. He thinks he's the cheesiest mascot ever. He doesn't care that Mr. Met is the FIRST professional mascot ever, he still thinks he's cheesy. My friend is a communist.
I remember when Mr. Met had disappeared. When I was a kid I distinctly remember a Met Mutt trolling the stands and taking photos with kiddies. Do we really want to bring this back?
I think part of our problem as Mets fans is that we want our Mets to be cooler than they are. When you think about it, we kind of have a long history of cheesiness. There is a new Mets theme song out by Lucas Prata that is pretty awful, but compared to "Our Team, Our Time" and "Who Let The Mets Out," it's practically Grammy-worthy. Whoulda ever thunk that we would miss The Curly Shuffle, after all? "Get Metzmerized," "Lets Go Mets Go," Mets Magic - an apple coming out of a hat for crying out loud, Comic Relief night, Boom boom boom let me hear you say Rey-O, giant neon baseball players on the side of the stadium which at one point was painted a distinct shade of PURPLE, "Takin' Care Of Business," even "Meet The Mets," which I consider the greatest song of all time, owes part of it's charm to it's cheesy old-timeyness... let's face it - this is Metsdom and we have to accept it, no, EMBRACE it!
Lets Go Mets Go!
I love that the pitchers were aggressive towards Pujols, succeeding against him to the point where he was pretty ticked off after the game. I called the one Cardinals fan I know and tried to give him some hell this morning, but he didn't have much to say. He predicts Mets in 6. A Cardinals fan said this! Sheesh.
Glad to see Beltran have some postseason hometown heroics last night. He was not very excellent offensively at Shea this season, but he sure has a thing for beating up on the Cardinals, it seems. We'll see if it hold up over the course of the series, but it is pretty astounding how much success he's had against them.
McCarver and Buck weren't too annoying last night, though they certainly had their share of idiotic comments. While Cliff Floyd was up, they talked about how important Cliff has been to the Mets this season, and how he was a big part of their success this year. That he struggled in April, but really found his stroke in May. Well, he was better in May than April, but FOX's dynamic duo somehow did not realize how banged up Cliff has been all year long, getting just 17 at bats in June, and hitting just .236 since the All Star break. Cliff Floyd has been a big part of the Mets success in 2006? Emotionally, maybe, but these guys seemed completely oblivious to his struggles to stay healthy and produce all year long. i mean, take away July and Cliffy was downright awful this year. Wake up, Buck and McCarver!
Thursday, October 12, 2006
One last note about Cory Lidle:
I tuned in to yesterdays Mike and the Maddog program on my TiVo and went to the point when they found out about Corey Lidle. They were interviewing Darryl Strawberry at the time when someone handed them a piece of paper with the news. For the next 15 minutes they both looked stunned, as Russo carried on a ridiculous interview with Straw about Alex Rodriguez of all things, while mike tried to find out what was going on. It was pretty interesting, because Russo looked totally distracted and put the interview into autopilot, which of course means talk about A-Rod. Poor Darryl. I wonder if the Mets front office brass were fuming during the interview - they sent Darryl on the air to hype up Mets/Cards and Russo starts talking about A-Rod and Jeter. Maybe then they felt like heels when they heard the news about Lidle. What a day...
Wednesday, October 11, 2006
Now, I am not saying Cory Lidle, the man who pitched for both and the Yankees, was a terrorist. But I think it is a very interesting statement about our "relationship" with professional athletes. We really belive we know these guys. But what do we really know about Cory Lidle, just because he was a pitcher for the Yankees? How do we know he wasn't an Al Qaeda sympathist, or just a maniac? Just because we saw him pitch on TV?
The more we learn about the story, the more it does in fact seem like it was an inexperienced pilot who lost control of his too-powerful plane. We read tragic quotes from him, from just a month ago, where he talks about how safe flying is, and how safety features are in place, and that even if an engine died a pilot could still land safely. But I just wanted to take this moment to think about our emotional connection to the players we watch on TV. We like to think we know these guys, based on interviews and media accounts, and just watching them perform. But, when you think about it, it's kind of silly.
A report on WNBC News says that the owner of the plane may have been ex-Met Cory Lidle. A purchase agreement for the exact plane with Cory Lidle's name on it was found, and Len Berman found an old report about Cory Lidle saying that he was a new pilot and had recently purchased an airplane that matched the description of the aircraft that was involved in today's incident.
Cory Lidle just pitched in the ALDS for the Yankees against the Tigers, allowing 3 Runs, 4 Hits, 0 K's in 1 & 1/3 Innings Pitched.
UPDATE: 5:01 PM. It has pretty much been confirmed that Cory Lidle was the pilot of the plane. Lidle was 34 years old. In August of 1979, 32 year old Yankees catcher Thurman Munson was killed when the plane he was piloting crashed in Canton, Ohio, as he was taking flying lessons.
Mike Piazza .100 Average (1 for 10), 1 double.
Mike Cameron .143 Average (2 for 14), 1 double, 1 RBI, 1 stolen base, 3 walks, 7 K's.
Over on the Cardinals side, Preston Wilson and old friend Braden Looper were part of the ex-Met faction of St. Louis:
Preston Wilson: .250 Average (2 for 8), 1 double, playing in two games.
Braden Looper: Allowed one hit in 1 and 2/3 innings pitched, in one appearance (Game 3).
Before moving on to the Junior Circuit, let's pause to remember the Dodger ex-Mets, who just had to be disposed of:
Marlon Anderson (traitor): .308 Average (4 for 13), 1 Double, 1 RBI, 1 K.
Jeff Kent (scum): .615 Average (8 for 13), 1 HR, 1 Double, 2 RBI, 2 Runs Scored.
Over in the American League Division Series, one transplanted ex-Met stood out: Unlikely hero Marco Scutaro! Scutaro had big hits for the A's in all their wins against the ex-Met deficient Twinkies, making Marco, thus far, the Transplanted Ex-Met 2006 Postseason MVP:
ALDS Transplanted ex-Mets:
Marco Scutaro: .333 Average (4 for 12), 4 doubles, 6 RBI.
Jay Payton: .333 Average (4 for 12), no extra base hits or RBI's (also caught the final out of the clincher).
Jason Tyner: .000 Average (0 for 6), 2 BB's, one stolen base.
Kenny Rogers: 1-0, 0 Runs, 5 Hits, 8 K's 2 BB's in 7.2 IP, stuck dagger in the hearts of his opponent who shall remain nameless.
AL East Division Winners:
Cory Lidle: 3 Runs, 4 Hits, 0 K's in 1 and 1/3 IP, (20.25 ERA)
PITCHERS (11): Chad Bradford, Pedro Feliciano, Tom Glavine, Aaron Heilman, Roberto Hernandez, John Maine, Guillermo Mota, Darren Oliver, Oliver Perez, Steve Trachsel, Billy Wagner.
CATCHERS (2): Paul Lo Duca, Ramon Castro
INFIELDERS (7): Carlos Delgado, Julio Franco, Anderson Hernandez, Jose Reyes, Jose Valentin, Chris Woodward, David Wright
OUTFIELDERS (5): Carlos Beltran, Endy Chavez, Cliff Floyd, Shawn Green, Michael TuckerI'm not really sure why AHern is on this roster , over Milledge or a third catcher or a twelfth pitcher, but this is our squad nopnetheless.
Tommy Glavine heads to the hill tonight against Jeff Weaver. Yes, that Jeff Weaver. Jeff Weaver has previously faltered under the bright lights of the postseason, but then, so did Kenny Rogers. Earlier this year, Weaver was bounced from the California Angels roster in favor of his younger brother, Jared. He was picked up by the Cards and has been pretty good for them down the stretch. He also won Game 2 in the NLDS against the Padres.
This NLCS could be viewed as a matchup of which team is less hobbled. Beltran has a slight tear in his upper-abdominal muscle, Floyd's got a balky achilles tendon, and Delgado has a tweaked oblique. This is all besides the injuries that knocked Pedro and ElDuque out of the postseason. On the Cardinals side, Scott Rolen has a bum shoulder being treated with cortisone, Jim Edmonds is back from post-concussion syndrome after crashing into a wall back in August, and of course this is after Mark Mulder and transplanted ex-Met Jason Isringhausen suffered injuries that knocked them out of the postseason.
By far the Cardinals are heavily relying on Albert Pujols, while the Mets will lean on their bullpen - as they've done all year long - but especially with a suspect rotation behind Glavine.
Darryl Strawberry will throw out the first pitch. Tom Glavine throws soon after, around 8:19.
Lets Go Mets!
Tuesday, October 10, 2006
At any rate, today, October 10th, I am cosing the books on teh Yankees through the end of the World Series. Joe Torre is coming back in 2007, and Pinella's not getting hired by them. From 2001 - 2005, sometime around August I always had to switch from being a Mets fan to a Yankees hater. But not this year. So from this point until November, I am not going to even acknowledge that another team plays in New York besides the Mets. After all, for the rest of 2006, no other team does! In honor of this day, I'll simply post, from last night's Late Show, the Top Ten New York Yankees Excuses:
Top Ten New York Yankees Excuses
10. Wanted Columbus Day off to get to all the sales
9. Thought series was best 6 out of 11
8. We've already missed the first three episodes of "Grey's Anatomy" -- enough is enough
7. Thought Joe Torre told us to give 10 percent
6. Players distracted by erotic text messages from Mark Foley
5. Shouldn't have switched to the cheaper generic steroids
4. Clubhouse caterer replaced E. coli-tainted spinach with E. coli-tainted lettuce
3. Uh, global warming?
2. More focused on how they're going to get by on a lousy $16 million a year
1. What's the point? North Korea's gonna nuke us at any moment
Monday, October 09, 2006
But if the Mets make it to the World Series, the games at Shea would be Tuesday (game 3), Wednesday (game 4) and Thursday (game 5), and of course with no vacation days left to spare, having a job greatly interferes with my ability to drive up to New York mid-week. Oakland is not within driving distance, and while Detroit is, I'm not sure that's the city I want to want to make a trek to on my own.
I know I'm getting ahead of myself anyway, but here's the World Series schedule:
Gm 1 NLCS winner at ALCS winner Sat Oct. 21 7:30 p.m.
Gm 2 NLCS winner at ALCS winner Sun Oct. 22 7:30 p.m.
Gm 3 ALCS winner at NLCS winner Tue Oct. 24 8 p.m.
Gm 4 ALCS winner at NLCS winner Wed Oct. 25 8 p.m.
Gm 5 ALCS winner at NLCS winner Thu Oct. 26 8 p.m.
Gm 6 NLCS winner at ALCS winner Sat Oct. 28 7:30 p.m.
Gm 7 NLCS winner at ALCS winner Sun Oct. 29 7:30 p.m.
Do I sound hypocritical to goad about the Yankees demise the post after chiding Mets fans for screaming "Yankees Suck!" at Shea? Listen, it's not that I don't despise the Yankees and wish them ill will and laugh at their misfortune. I just take issue with a very specific action at an unnecessary time. Hate The Yankees? Yes! Scream about them while your beloved team is on the field or dancing off the field? Save it.
While we're on the subject of the Yankees, I think the most foolish thing George could do would be to fire Torre and hire Pinella while keeping A-Rod. I know A Rod and Sweet Lou go way back but firing Torre would be an unpopular move in the clubhouse, and bringing in a guy to coddle an unpopular player would just be a mess. I hope they do it.
Back to the Mets: NLCS starts Wednesday against the Cardinals. If the Mets simply intentionally walk Pujols at any opportunity, the Mets should have a good chance at advancing to the World Series. We'll see. Here's the schedule:
Wednesday - Game 1 at Shea
Thursday 8 PM - Game 2 at Shea
Saturday 4 PM - Game 3 in St. Louis
Sunday 7:30 PM - Game 4 in St. Louis
Monday 8 PM - Game 5 in St. Louis
Wednesday 4 PM - Game 6 at Shea
Thursday 8 PM - Game 7 at Shea
The idea is to sweep at home. Lets Go Mets!