14.9.06

Mets Eliminate Marlins and Win Their 90th

Ok, it isn't as spectacular as eliminating the Braves yesterday or clinching the NL East, but for the second night in a row, a Mets victory eliminated an NL East opponent.

The Phillies can go ahead and keep sweeping the lowly Braves all they want, merely postponing the inevitable.

The Mets won another from the Marlins this time 7-4, yet another come-from-behind victory, yet another extra inning extravaganza.

And for added emphasis, the second night in a row the Marlins led in the 8th inning but couldn't hold on. Maybe Cliff Floyd is a little less over-awed by the Marlins by now.


David Wright unable to score on Julio Franco's double in the 6th


But the rather unlikely pairing of Tom Glavine and Jose Reyes scored instead.

Last night the fall came in the 11th when Dan Uggla misplayed Ricky Ledee's certain double play grounder that left runners on the corners with two outs and Jose Reyes stepping to the plate. Reyes' pop foul was just out of reach of Miquel Cabrera and he lived for another pitch. The next one was wild, allowing Jose Valetin to score and the one after that, Reyes tapped an infield single to short. Trying to get Ledee at third, Hanley Ramirez made a wild throw to Cabrera, allowing Ledee to score.

The night started with Tom Glavine pitching well, effectively in a 3 earned runs over six innings kind of way. For the first three innings he, like his opposite number on the Marlin's mound, threw scorelessly but there was the question of a pair of runs surrendered in the 4th and a two-run homer in the 6th that gave the Marlins the lead and ended in his no decision. Certainly head and shoulders above, oh, let's say Steve Trachsel but he didn't leave with the lead and thus, didn't get the win.

Once again, the Mets bullpen pitched heroically and I for one am willing to speculate that all this hoo-haaa about starting pitching winning championships is going to get turned on its head by the Mets this postseason.

The Mets are a team that can outlast a starting pitcher and a team that can rebound from a deficit and a team that has rather pronounced collection of effective bullpen assistance that can hold slim leads or keep the game close whilst the offense builds its steady late-inning momentum.

Last night the core; Roberto Hernandez, Guillermo Mota, Aaron Heilman and Billy Wagner, combined to throw FIVE scoreless innings during which they allowed a mere two hits and struck out six.

The Mets are now 9-5 in extra inning games.

BUT, something to think about for October: just across the water the Yankees are 9-1 in extra inning games and have surpassed the Tigers for the second-best record in baseball behind the Mets.

*****

It shouldn't go unreported that Paul Lo Duca had another 3 RBIs last night even though oddly enough he's only had 44 on the season in spite of his glistening .312 batting average. He continues to hit much better in the day (.378) than the night (.297) but his is hitting .326 since the All Star break, quieting detractors who worried he might wear down over the course of the season.

And what about that David Wright kid? After an excruciating lull during August when he hit only .245, he's bounced back with a bang and is hitting .471 in September.

Nor should we fail to notice how Reyes keeps straddling that .300 mark, last night with three more hits, giving him 178 for the season. He needs 12 more over the next 17 games to reach the magic mark of 200 to go with his 16 (hopefully 20) triples, 19 homers (hopefully 20) and 57 stolen bases (hopefully 65) for the season and here's hoping he does it all to polish one of the finest seasons by a lead off hitting Met in recent memory and give him serious consideration for the most underrated MVP in the National League.

It's quite likely the Mets will finally clinch the NL East during their 3 day trip to Pittsburgh which although it isn't ideal (i.e. beating the Braves to clinch or clinching at Shea or clinching against an NL East opponent even,) we can rest easy knowing that we're the team no one will want to face in the playoffs.

1 comment:

sanchez said...

“Besides the noble art of getting things done, there is the noble art of leaving things undone. The wisdom of life consists in the elimination of non-essentials.”

-Lyn Yutang