14.5.05

Who's That Imposter in the Number 47 Jersey? Mets Beat Cards, 2-0

"I didn't want to be in position where I had 290 wins and I was looking for a team in three years to get 10 more wins. I wanted this to be my last contract and have the opportunity to win 300 games," - Tom Glavine, hyper-optimistic upon signing with the Mets in 2002.

Well, it's taken nearly three years but Tom Glavine finally pitched for the Mets as he once did in the wonder years of his Braves Hall of Fame past. At the very least, finally shedding the contemptible post-2004 All Star Game Tom Glavine skin and bursting through with a newer, more loveable version which, if repeatable, might give the Mets the edge in the NL East race.

Glavine pitched seven-plus scoreless innings against the most productive lineup in the National League last night and emerged almost as...guess what? the winning pitcher for Mets in a valient 2-0 victory against the NL Central-leading Cardinals.

In a way, you had to wonder, "who's this?" when you saw someone out there in the old number 47 jersey pitching as though he knew what he was doing, as though the strikezone was dictated by himself rather than those dodgy umpires who won't give the wide-berth strikezone once afforded him as a Brave.

In the end, it was an admirable performance, the kind that almost made you forget the Robert Earl Hughes-like ERA, the inaccuracy, the inning-by-inning blasting he has withstood this season, one mediocre opponent after another.

After 24 walks and 50 hits in his first 36 2/3 innings, last night it was only four hits allowed, no walks, no runs.

"A lot had been said and written about me, that I might be at the end of my rope." Glavine said afterwards, relieved and hopefully back to his former life.

Better still, unlike previous years, the bullpen didn't blow a well-pitched game for him. Roberto Hernandez followed Glavine and struck out pinch-hitter Jim Edmonds and retired pinch-hitter John Mabry and David Eckstein on ground balls. Then, in yet another who-is-this-guy sort of evening, Braden Looper pitched a scoreless ninth for his ninth save, completing the Mets' third shutout of the season without making us bite our fingernails down to the marrow getting there.

The two runs for the Mets were delivered by Cliff Floyd, recovering from an abyssmal road trip that saw him go 2 for 22, who hit a pair of homeruns for the only two runs that mattered off losing pitcher Jason Marquis (5-2).


*****

More news on the Let's Push Zambrano Out A Window front: Kaz Ishii threw four scoreless innings for Class A St. Lucie against Fort Myers in a rehab start. Ishii, who threw 49 pitches, allowed one walk and struck out three . . .

*****

It's Pedro Time again at Shea this afternoon going against tbe virtually impregnable Mark Mulder, LHP (5-1, 2.70).

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