A week ago, I wrote how Livan Hernandez was one of the reasons the Mets were staying in contention despite injuries to half the team. Now, as Jose Reyes is put on the DL and viruses and other nagging injuries are affecting more of the Mets, it feels like they are all jumping overboard while that big ship known as the Philadelphia Phillies has just blown right by, making the water choppy around those NYM lifeboats.
I don’t know about you, but the last few days I’ve had an awful feeling in the pit of my stomach, and what I’m feeling is not the Beltran/Maine virus….it’s AGITA. Davey Johnson, where are my Rolaids? Seriously, the last two Septembers have wreaked havoc on our collective gut, as our Mets kept losing and the Phils kept winning. Now, with May giving way to June, all of the injuries seem to be catching up to the Mets, as they have lost two straight games to the Pirates, while Philly has beaten the Padres twice in a row in San Diego after sweeping the Nationals over the weekend. A half-game lead is now a 2.5 game deficit, and don’t kid yourself into thinking that gap won’t grow wider in a big hurry. Yes, folks, it’s September in June.
Okay, so two losses are no reason to hit the panic button again, especially because there have been so many bright spots this season, including a few nice winning streaks. But this is less about the Mets and more about the Phillies. They are mostly healthy, and they made the big offensive off-season move the Mets didn’t by signing Raul Ibanez Mantle. Seriously though, did anyone see that coming? (Side not to MLB: you might want to check the milk in Raul’s corn flakes). And last night, with Brett Myers possibly out for the season, the Phillies get six innings of one-run ball from rookie Antonio Bastardo. Ha. Does that name fit how we feel about the Phillies, or what?
In trying to joke here, I’m only doing it to hide the pain we’re all starting to feel. We can get healthy and get back in this race, but it’s going to take a .600 winning percentage or better against Philly, and it’s going to take some help from the Phils’ opponents. How confident are all of you?