Talk about having defeat snatched out of the jaws of victory, what a depressing loss. Depressing not because the Mets played poorly, only that the victory was right there for the taking.
This game featured plenty of ups and downs, but a key hit or two could have made all of us Mets fans happy instead of feeling miserable.
There were some key moments in this game and at least three turning points.
1. Oliver Perez – Ollie was a complete disaster today and only luck and some good defense kept this game from being a laugher after only three innings. It’s become quite clear that Oliver Perez has no value right now and brings nothing to the table. His presence on the roster has become tedious to bare. He finished the day with one of the ugliest pitching lines you can imagine: 2.1 innings pitched, 5 hits, 6 walks, 4 earned runs. He may have to be buried in the minors for half a season to rebuild a confidence that has been shattered into a million shards.
2. Jose Reyes – Reyes has been absolutely killing the Mets in the leadoff spot and went 0-5 today to lower his batting average to .258. He has looked lost at the plate swinging wildly at pitches out of the zone. His worst moment today came in the top of the 10th inning when he was asked to bunt Alex Cora who represented the winning run to second base. Rather than sacrifice himself and execute the bunt, he continued to bunt for a hit and ended up striking out. Fundamentally, he still doesn’t get it.
3. Carlos Beltran – He may lead the league in batting, but what the Mets needed from him more than anything else was to drive the ball into the outfield and score Alex Cora from third. Instead he grounded into an inning ending double play and the Mets’ last chance to win the game fizzled to a gut-wrenching end.
4. Jerry Manuel – Francisco Rodriguez was warmed up and had been for three straight innings. Rather than bringing him out to protect the tie, just as the Phillies did with Brad Lidge, he opted to go with Sean Green who had already cost the Mets a couple of games earlier in the season. Why Jerry, why??? Also, the Mets are under the mistaken belief that Sean Green is a crossover type pitcher. He’s not.
5. Fight – The Mets showed plenty of heart and plenty of fight out there. They hung tough and made a game out of it despite the Oliver Perez meltdown. As a team they showed me a lot of positive signs. Dan Murphy is fast becoming a valuable weapon. The Mets bench has played solid all month and they sometimes have more grit than the regulars. However, we did leave 13 runners on base.
6. Bullpen – J.J. Putz was absolutely solid and his fastball was clocked at 95 and was jumping out of his glove, He pitched two solid innings. Ken Takahashi was magnificent in his debut throwing 2.1 solid innings. He induced a double play in the bottom of the third with the bases loaded that was pretty nifty and ended up keeping us in the game.
Tomorrow’s another day.