I must say that yesterday was quite a great day to be a Mets fan. No, we didn’t win any pennants or a fifty pound gold trophy with a bunch of little flags that go around it. It was a great day because our beloved team took the field and absolutely shined last night in St. Louis.
It was a pleasure to see the Cardinals and their fans get some dirt kicked in their faces, and be on the receiving end of an elaborate April Fools’ Day loss.
The Mets couldn’t have performed any better than they did last night. They were firing on all cylinders with sparkling defensive gems, timely hitting, great starting pitching, and a bullpen that slammed the door shut on the defending World Series champs.
I was glad to see that common sense prevailed and that Paul LoDuca resumed his role as the number two hitter in the lineup. Maybe someone whispered into Willie’s ear that his team led the majors in runs scored in the first inning last year, or that LoDuca had only 38 strikeouts compared to 113 for David Wright, whatever the reason is, the bottom line was they got it right.
I was also very impressed with Moises Alou’s performance last night. All he did was get a hit, but it was his demeanor at the plate that caught my eye, not to forget his dazzling defensive play he made when he dived to rob the Cardinals of a base hit. It’s easy to forget that Alou is a lifetime .300 hitter, and even more easier to forget he owns a lifetime on base percentage of .368. If he stays healthy, this season it will translate into a huge year for David Wright and for the Mets overall. (That’s assuming Wright stays in the number five position)
What can I say about Tom Glavine that I haven’t already said repeatedly on this blog? He is the absolute definition of a seasoned veteran. He is as battled tested as they come, and as we all heard last night, only four left-handed starters in history have won more games than him. I have no doubt that he will be the one constant on this pitching staff that can be counted on day in and day out to provide the Mets with 6-7 quality innings every time he takes the mound. I say that not as a knock on the rest of the staff, but as a conviction of confidence in his presence in our rotation.
The bullpen may have looked shaky at times last night or maybe a little rusty, but bullpens are judged by results, and last night they kept the Cardinals scoreless for three solid, yet not spectacular innings. It took some great defensive plays to do it, but that’s why they call baseball a team sport. When every aspect of the game works together like it did for the Mets last night, it produces victories. You can expect to see about 95 more of those victories for the Mets before the post season rolls around.
Make no mistake, my friends, the Mets are in it to win it. The determination of the players was very evident last night, and these Mets have no intention of kicking back and lauding last years success. They are as focused and as unified as I have ever seen them, and their quest for a World Series title began last night.