Take Note: Mets Take First Place

Shall we mark this day down in the calendar as the day the NL East race ended?

Premature, it is argued by the trepid souls. Atlanta could in theory anyway, bash us in Shea right back down into second. After all, we'll be playing without Carlos Beltran.

Right, the Road Beltran will morph into the Shea Beltran.

The Road Beltran hit a homer in last night's winning effort against the Marlins. Fitted into the coveted number two slot in the batting order what with Paul Lo Duca giving his grapefruit finger a rest, the Road Beltran had four hits, including two doubles to add to his homer, two runs and two RBIs. For some men, that's a week's work.

Home Cookin' Not So Good?

The Road Beltran hits .385, smacks 4 homers and knocks in 14 runs in a mere 9 games.

The Shea Beltran limps along with a .278 mark, powerless without a single homerun and 3 measely RBIs to its credit.

Certainly this phenomenon cannot be explained by a disappointed and booing crowd at Shea, additional pressure or even the fact of Shea not being a renowned hitter's paradise. That was yesterday's news. Mr B is running on his third year in the comfy confines of Shea and any kinks to have been worked out should have long ago been worked out.

Methinks it is perhaps the constant overhead reminder flying out of Shea of the massive carbon footprint left in his wake. The subconscious guilt of all those domestic flights reminding him of emininent global ecological disasters...


So, the Mets filleted the Marlins another night, a 5th consecutive loss for the emergent bottom-dwellers and perhaps fresh reason to hope that a bottomed-out season for the Marlins will spell a D-Train to Mets scenario someday.

This is what happens when you counter what is arguably the best team in baseball with a starting pitcher going by the unique tag of Vanden Hurk (and oh wait, he has a first name as well!).

Hardly Hurk The Invincible Warrior last night. Spotted a first inning 2-1 lead he, similar to D-Train before him, gave up 8 earned runs in a brief and uncompelling 4 innings of work.

The Mets exploded with 6 runs in the third and the game was essentially, over.

Thanks go out to Ramon Castro in another brilliant cameo role behind the plate knocking in 3 and raising his season's average to .357.

But hey, it was a 16-hit attack. What are you going to say in the face of that? Good God Almighty! Head for the Hills! It's the Mets Run Producing Monster!

And speaking of hits, David Wright is now on 26 games in a row over two seasons although throwing the ball into the crowd in the bottom of the first did nothing to bolster any Gold Glove ambitions.


But perhaps happiest of all, El Duque, hammering down the memories of his previous start's ejection, he surrendered only 3 hits and a lone earned run over seven innings whilst striking out 10 Marlins.

Closing out the game, Ambiorix Burgos, a third straight semi-flawless appearance; (that's only 1 hit allowed over his last 4 innings of relief)and Billy Wagner made the obligatory one hit, one walk and striking out the side appearance which was alas, in a game too far gone to earn another save.


The Mets have won 23 of their last 38 against the Marlins, and seven of the last 11 at Dolphin Stadium.

There goes my preseason NL MVP 'round the bases yet again...his 4th triple of the season...


So indeed, the Braves were shut out by the Cubs last night which dropped them to a half game behind the Mets for the NL East lead.

Conveniently they now travel to Shea to see if they can fall back even further what with their star closer suffering left elbow discomfort already.

Tim Hudson (2-0, 0.86) opens the series against Mike Pelfrey (0-0, 3.18).

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