NY Sports Dog: Good Morning Mets Fans!

Monday, July 7, 2008

Good Morning Mets Fans!

Are you feeling it a little? Come on, be honest, that little bit of hope is racing through your heart. The belief that the Mets can keep this little roll going....maybe beat the Phils again tonight before coming home for the Giants and the Rockies. Perhaps something crazy like winning 5 of those 6 games, then the All-Star break and then....

Yes it could happen...I believe that. And after the break the Mets go on the road to Cincy for 4, and then come home for 6 against the Phils and Cards, and then 3 away at the Marlins.

A hot Mets team can absolutely wipe away all deficits in July and put their destiny in their own hands.

Let's talk about that crazy game yesterday. Do you think Ollie Perez misses the Jacket? All Ollie has done in his last two starts is go 14 innings, give up 7 hits, 1 run, 2 walks and strike out 14.

Yesterday he was at his best, showing off a sterling array of pitches that he skillfully worked up and down in the zone. He was masterful--he deserved the win--he didn't get it.

Billy Wagner blew it. No way to sugar coat this, Billy just blew it. He is a fastball pitcher and had Jayson Werth set up for a high fastball, and he hung a slider. 2 outs, 2 strikes, bottom of the 9th, after a 3 hour rain delay...wet conditions...and he threw a slider. Werth knew what to do with it and the game was tied.

On a positive note, Billy Wagner is the Mets lone All-Star representative (for now)....maybe he'll throw some fastballs if he gets in the game. I love Wags, but he is over reliant on his average slider. The reason his slider is good is because his fastball is great. I'm willing to make an educated guess that the majority of his blown saves have been centered around guys hitting his slider.

Throw the fastball Billy...an outside fastball to Werth yesterday, and it is game over.

"I've blown enough of them and been an All-Star," Wagner said. "The biggest part to me is we came back, the guys picked me up and we won. That's going to happen. I'd like to bounce that slider, but I hung it, Jayson hit it, but we came back and won."

It was on to extra innings and the Mets magic decided to show up. Jerry Manuel called upon Scott Schoeneweis and Schoeney quickly struck out the first two batters he faced before surrendering back to back singles. Pressure cooker time....even more so because the Mets were down to their last two pitchers--Joe Smith and Tony Armas. The reality was that the Mets were down to their very last pitcher as Armas had pitched the day before.

Joe Smith came and did what he always does...induce a groundball. This particular groundball was a semi-soft tweener that Smith almost got a hand on...it looked like a sure hit until David Wright grabbed it barehanded, off the wet grass, and fired a laser to first base to end the threat.

David Wright is not going to the All-Star game....yet.

The teams played a scoreless 11th (Smith was dominant), and it was on to the 12th.

After Carlos Delgado got on base and was sacrificed over by Mr. Professional Damion Easley, Mighty Mouse stepped up to the plate. Back in the clubhouse Ryan Church and Billy Wagner watched the game, and Church called it saying, "Don't worry, Tatis is going to hit one here."

Tatis did just that--sending a Chad Durbin fastball deep over the leftfield wall....a big, big, booming, heroic homerun off the bat of one of the best baseball stories of 2008.

Tatis could barely contain himself afterward.

"Oh my God. It's unbelievable for us," Tatis said. "It's amazing. Winning the game like that."

And in the bottom of the 12 Joe Smith did what Joe Smith does...he got a groundball and fired it to first to end the game....truly the best outing of his career...2.1 innings of no run baseball, against the Phils, against their entire lineup, with the game hanging on every pitch.

Jose Reyes was 3 for 6 and hit his 41st extra base hit of the year. Jose Reyes is not going to the All-Star game.

So enjoy your coffee Mets fans....Pedro on the mound tonight...with a Mets win we can get to 1 game over .500 and 2.5 games back.

Are you feeling it yet?

N.Y. Mets (44-44) «0010000010024142
Philadelphia (48-41)0000000020002101
Players of the Game

J. Werth
AB 4
R 1
H 1
HR 1

New York

F. Tatis
AB 3
R 1
H 1
HR 1
New York Mets
Jose Reyes, SS6130004 .297
Endy Chavez, RF5020003 .260
David Wright, 3B6010022 .286
Carlos Beltran, CF6132003 .264
Carlos Delgado, 1B5110122 .237
Damion Easley, 2B4010102 .286
Marlon Anderson, LF2000102 .194
a- Fernando Tatis, PH-LF3112010 .269
Brian Schneider, C5020110 .262
Oliver Perez, P2000013 .167
b- Chris Aguila, PH0000100 .167
Duaner Sanchez, P0000000 .000
Pedro Feliciano, P0000000 .000
Aaron Heilman, P0000000 .000
Billy Wagner, P0000000 .000
c- Argenis Reyes, PH1000011 .000
Scott Schoeneweis, P0000000 .000
Joe Smith, P1000010 .000

a-grounded out for Anderson in the 8th
b-walked for Perez in the 8th
c-struck out for Wagner in the 10th
2B - Jose Reyes (22, Kendrick)
HR - Carlos Beltran (13, Kendrick), Fernando Tatis (2, Durbin)
SH - Endy Chavez (6), Damion Easley (2), Oliver Perez (6)
RBI - Carlos Beltran 2 (58), Fernando Tatis 2 (13)
2-OUT RBI - Carlos Beltran 2 (19)
SB - Jose Reyes 2 (31, 2nd base off Kendrick/Ruiz, 2nd base off Lidge/Ruiz), Carlos Beltran 2 (14, 2nd base off Kendrick/Ruiz, 3rd base off Kendrick/Ruiz)
PK - Chris Aguila (1, Romero)
Team LOB - 14
DP - Reyes-Easley-Delgado
E - Marlon Anderson (2, Dropped fly), Duaner Sanchez (1, Misplayed grounder)
New York Mets
Oliver Perez 7400260 4.62
Duaner Sanchez (H,14) 0.1000100 3.82
Pedro Feliciano (H,10) 0.1000010 2.88
Aaron Heilman (H,9) 0.1000100 4.63
Billy Wagner (BS,6) 1322011 2.31
Scott Schoeneweis 0.2200020 2.88
Joe Smith (W,1-1) 2.1100000 3.22
WP - Oliver Perez (7)
Pitches-Strikes - Oliver Perez 110-71, Duaner Sanchez 12-8, Pedro Feliciano 3-3, Aaron Heilman 11-5, Billy Wagner 22-15, Scott Schoeneweis 12-10, Joe Smith 33-21
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Oliver Perez 3-12, Duaner Sanchez 1-1, Aaron Heilman 1-0, Billy Wagner 1-1, Joe Smith 4-3
Batters Faced - Oliver Perez 27, Duaner Sanchez 3, Pedro Feliciano 1, Aaron Heilman 2, Billy Wagner 6, Scott Schoeneweis 4, Joe Smith 8

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