Merry Ole Game One of NLCS

A little past one in the morning over here and to help stay awake for the game, the Army will do a bit of in-game blogging...Cliff Floyd makes the starting lineup, gimp and all...what was he, 4 for 9 with one homer and nearly another v. the Dodgers? A good sign.

First things, Prediction - with two micro managers running this show, expect some very loooooong games...

1:26 am - two outs, pitching to Pujols? Indeed. Pujols 9 for 20 v. Glavine (.450)...

1:27 - Pujols down on strikes!

1:32 - Cards starter Jeff Weaver lifetime 86-101 won/loss record.

1:35 - Mets go in order as well. Maybe this game won't slow down until after the 6th inning...

1:39 - Cardinals were 23-34 v lefties this season...and they say the Mets struggled! At least we had a winning record against lefties.

1:41 - Floyd can't reach a foul ball a few rows into the seats. Must be the sore wheels, harhar. Second or third ball hit Floyd's way already. Are the Cards testing him?

1:43 - Six Cardinals up, six Cardinals down.

1:44 - What I'm reading in between innings in lieu of listening to the inane prattling of nonstop commercials: "Together with its emotional power, the unity between form and content that music exemplified had come to represent an artistic ideal to which writers aspired. Of particular relevance in the context of this aspiration are the reactions to music, and to Wagner in particular, of two of the greatest French poets of the period: Baudelaire and Mallarmé."

1:46 - Delgado shift is on. Didn't the Cards learn anything off of his 4 for 5 opener against the Dodgers?

1:51 - Weaver's left foot kick-blocks David Wright's near-certain single up the middle for a 1-6-3 put out...

1:54 - One hobbling Floyd hits it to hobbling Preston Wilson who muffs catching the fly ball. Floyd's achilles is barking again and requires quick attention...maybe we should call each play The Achilles Watch.

1:55 - Floyd hits it again to Wilson, this time it's caught. Six Mets up, six Mets down but Weaver has used alot more pitches to get there...

1:57 - Endy Chavez replaces Floyd in left field. Hot bat or not if he's that injured, perhaps he shouldn't have made the postseason roster, even with a yoke like Anderson Hernandez joining the roster in place of another bullpen arm. I dunno if any of that is wise considering this is a longer series and considering how often the bullpen will likely be used in this series.

2:00 AM - Molina gets the first hit of the night, a single.

2:01 - Weaver bluffs bunt and fires a single into right. Tricky little bastid. First and second, one out. Trouble in paradise...

2:02 - David Wright snags line drive and turns it into a double play, whew, outta trouble!

2:06 - Shawn Green gets the first Mets hit of the NLCS, one man on, none out. Valentin coming up next, 0 for 9 in the NLDS and Glavine to follow, not much to hope for...

2:07 - Weaver continues to fall behind hitters. At this rate his will be a short night. Good news for the Mets no doubt eager for the Cards' bullpen.

2:11 - Reyes disappoints. Inning over.

2:15 Glavine 30 pitches over 3 innings, good pace. First batter, Glavine ties Smoltz for most innings pitched in the NLCS. Pujols up again and again, Glavine is pitching to him. I hate to say it but is he pushing his luck?

2:17 - Careful pitching, Pujols walks on inside change-ups. Juan Encarnacion hitting clean up - seems odd. Simply because Edmonds is banged up? Hardly a frightening presence and demonstrates relative weakness of Cards batting order.

2:19 - Beltran catches lazy pop to center and Pujols caught napping/wandering/somnambulating around first and gets picked off by Beltran for an inning-ending double play! Brilliant for the Mets, buffoonery for Pujols!

2:28 - Over shift on Delgado again, who gets a full count walk. No shift can protect against that...Wright coming to the plate.

2:30 - Inning over. A little over an hour for four innings. At this rate, I might get to bed by 4 am.

2:32 - Commercial break: To quote Carl Dahlhaus:
"The earlier notion that music either moved the affections and touched the heart or was nothing but ‘an agreeable noise’ was confronted around 1800 by a modern aesthetic which Beethoven held in common with Friedrich Schlegel: the idea that music, not unlike philosophical meditation, represents a train of thought."

2:34 - Rolen gone on a pop-up. Sadistically, Glavine pitches inside to the man with the bum shoulder. Both of these teams put the bang in banged-up. Over here, banged up is slang for getting arrested. The correlation? Christ knows, it's 2:30 in the morning for crissakes, don't hold me accountable!

2:35 - Edmonds gets on, one out, one man on. Glavine has now pitched with men on base in each subsequent inning. Still, only 53 pitches... Suddenly Endy Chavez makes a terrific diving backhand catch in left! Something Cliff Floyd couldn't have done, no doubt. That would've been extra bases otherwise.

2:39 - Glavine walks Molina to put two men on for Jeff Weaver. He's been falling behind in the count more often, is he tiring already?! Or are his fingers just cold?

2:41 - Swing and a miss! Side retired - scoreless after 4 1/2. This bottom frame will be the Mets' chance to get Glavine a couple of runs, especially as he appears to be losing a little effectiveness. He needs a cushion bruthahs and sistahs!

2:42 - Commercial break, time to break out the "Shea Guevarra" (ohhh, might have to re-name the blog:)

2:44 - Jeff Weaver has thrown 64 pitches and has 9 straight shutout innings in the postseason...

2:46 - Two outs, Valentin up, 0 for 10 in the postseason...remember when Anderson Hernandez was the Opening Day second baseman?

2:47 - Scoreless after five full innings. Pitcher's duel. Let's hope Glavine's up for it. He threw six scoreless against the Nats in his last start of the regular season and six scoreless against the Dodgers and now five scoreless against the Cards, that's 17 scoreless innings pitched in a row. How's that for jinxing him?

2:53 - One out single for Preston Wilson and Pujols coming to the plate. Uh oh. Looks like a good time for another careful walk.

2:55 - Glavine pitches to Pujols, what cajones! Line drive nabbed, two outs. Whew. Talk about playing with fire.

2:57 - Inning over, Glavine has pitched 12 consecutive postseason shutout innings. Try saying that three times fast.

3:00 AM - Reyes comes to the plate with one out. But if only for television graphics to show me quickly what he's done in the postseason to date. Quiet, quiet start. 2 for 14 in the postseason, there it is...

3:05 - Lo Duca gets just second hit of game off Weaver, a two-out single. No rally monkies in Shea. What would be appropriate in Shea with Beltran coming to the plate, the introduction of the rally apples? (Everyone brings apples to the game and when the other team starts a late-inning rally everyone starts pelting the field with apples forcing the game to be halted to clean up and ruining the momentum of the opponents rally?) - I like it. Go'wan folks, bring your apples, it's the harvest season for apples anyway.

3:08 - LONG GONE! CARLOS BELTRAN TWO OUT, TWO-RUN BOMB brings back memories of 2004! Hooo-haaa! 2-2 fastball from Weaver that Beltran got all of to the scoreboard. TWO-NOTHING, METS! Weaver up to 90 pitches. Delgado coming up. The air is ripe with...rally apples...

3:12 - Delgado, stand up double! Weaver is toast. Keep sitting on those hands Tony La Russa, you monkey!

3:13 - Wright is intentionally walked and the bullpen is going to get a call.

La Russa considers his next bullpen move...

3:15 - Rookie Tyler Lefty Johnson coming in from the pen to face lefty Chavez. Cardinals relievers stranded all 12 runners they inherited against the Padres in the NLDS.

3:18 - Inning over. Damage done. Make that 14 stranded runners in a row for Cards' bullpen. One more inning out of Glavine, one out of Heilman and one out of Wagner and we can close da books on Game One. If only it will be that easy!

3:25 - Tom Glavine mows through seven scoreless innings on a mere 89 pitches. Perhaps he will be fresh for Game Four after all...it'll be up to the bullpen from here. Nonetheless, a clutch postseason outing for a probable Hall of Fame pitcher.

3:37 - Every time I hear the name Yadier Molina I think yaddayaddayadda. His cannon arm wasn't enough to get Green stealing, so Green stands perched on second base, one out, the ageless Julio Franco pinch-hitting for Glavine. Looks like Guillermo Mota will be the man out of the pen instead of Heilman in the 8th. Quel surprise!

3:40 - Another pitching change by the chimp. Commercial break, ugh.

apropos of nothing, a russian bird...

3:43 - Following the break, Brad Thompson is in for the Cardinals. What do I know about him? Zippo. Where is my scouting sheet? Where are the accolades from the St Louis media? Why, it's nearing 4 in the morning and here I am praying for a quick release before it's time to go to work. Maybe Reyes will have some joy with the pitching change. 2 for 15 in anxiousness in the postseason to date.

3:44 - Inning over. Two more to go.

3:46 - Guillermo Mota who had already started warming up, comes in instead of Heilman for the 8th. All sorts of theories abound. Willie doesn't want to overtax the pen by not using Mota, who had already been warming up. Willie secretly hates Heilman for whingeing about not being a starter. Willie prefers Mota because he's an hermano and Heilman is just plain ole whitey. Willie sure does love Mota. He won a game against the Dodgers but had a 6.75 ERA in that series. Three dodgy earned runs that could have almost been unearned. Wonder if Aaron Heilman is pissed off, mumbling to himself in the bullpen, spitting sunflower seeds in Willie's general direction.

3:52 - Mota surrenders a two out walk to Eckstein with Albert Pujols on deck, Preston Wilson at the plate. Nobody up and throwing in the pen just yet. And now Rick Peterson comes out for a mound chat. Wilson 4 for 18 against Mota. And now Chad Bradford is warming up. Pujols 0 for 3 against Bradford, 6 for 20 against Wagner. My, the chess moves are making my early morning head spin!

3:54 - Sweet jesus, Mota falls behind 3-0 to Wilson.

3:55 - It's all about keeping Pujols out of the batter's box in the 8th. Full count foul. The tension lengthens...

3:56 - Pop foul that Delgado catches. A huge out for Mota. Whew! That might be the game. Wonder if Pujols will finally be intentionally walked in the 9th...

4:01 - Lo Duca gets a lead off single. Man, I'm torn between hoping for a quick inning and a quick ending to the game to get some sleep before work and the Mets building on their lead. Still, it's almost worth it to be up just to witness Looper's demise at Shea in someone else's uniform for a change.

4:06 - Delgado hits it over the head of the outfielder for another stand up double. How's that shift working out now, suckahs?! The snail-like Lo Duca held at third. Looper is right on schedule. Pffft.

4:08 - Side retired, barely. One inning to go!

Commercial break

Here's your Cardinal now...

4:11 - Wagner comes in from the bullpen to try and earn his 3rd save of his career. Pujols, 6 for 20 versus Wagner. Will he be pitched to? Will Willie bring the tying run to the plate? Nope. They're pitching him! What balls!

4:13 - Delgado picks the liner off his shoe tops! First baseman Pujols lines out to first baseman Delgado! Poetic justice. One out. Seconds later, Valentin fields a grounder, an outstanding play and Delgado pulls out the throw, TWO OUTS!

4:14 - Scott Rolen, 0 for 3 on the night, 2 for 14 career against Wagner. Next fast ball from Wagner is 98 mph. But it's another ball, 3-0.

4:15 - Rolen gets a walk. Scott Spiezio pinch hits for Edmonds. Remember his great postseason for the Angels in 2002? Gulp. He's never faced Wagner.

4:17 - Valentin makes the catch in short right field. METS WIN GAME ONE, 2-0!

This is a berry berry good start for the Mets because if Carpenter doesn't win tomorrow, the Cards will go home without their ace to save them!


dado said...

keep 'em coming! I've just woken up and don't have access to the game!

Jaap said...

no doubt you're the only one reading at the moment considering the hour...

dado said...

or considering the dearth of readership, ha!

Jaap said...

yes, no doubt. looks like I won't be making a million pounds in advertising revenues this year either...

Ed in Westchester said...

Jaap - I'm adding you to my links.
Funny stuff. Loved it!

Itsmetsforme said...

speaking of dearth of readership, this is my last comment until you leave me one dammit. that way i can tell my sponsors that the army looks at my blog. or someone.

however, i will be back to lurk and check out the women--no other metsblog integrates pictures of the ladies like the Army! appropos of nothing is the best kind of bird!

Jaap said...

itsmetsforme - muchos apologias. I will go forthwith to your site and add gobs of juicy comments and innuendo!

Jaap said...

thanks, Ed.

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