Sunday, September 21, 2008

Unhappy Recap: Braves 7 Mets 6

How many times we have seen this same game? I bet there's been at least 25 times this year the Mets played a game with the following characteristics: Mets score early off the starter then go in the tank, the starting pitcher pitches fairly well, but allows too many baserunners and doesn't go deep enough and then the bullpen implodes.

I don't even blame the bullpen all that much for this loss. Schoeneweis, Smith and Heilman all gave up extra base hits in the same inning, but they got a little unlucky and were hindered by a horrible decision by Jerry Manuel.

Why the hell did he intentionally walk two guys in the 8th inning? It made no sense to put extra runners on base. He knew they were going to pinch hit Chipper if he walked Norton. So he added an extra runner AND put him in scoring position, and gained nothing. He should have gone after Norton and at least given the offense a chance.

Not that the offense would have done anything with it. Before I go any further though it's important to mention that you can't view this game as a one-run game. Carlos Delgado's homer only came because Mike Gonzalez was challenging him with a 3-run lead. Without that lead Delgado would have been pitched differently, most likely to a different result.

David Wright and Carlos Delgado are exempt from the blame for this game, they had 5 of the 6 RBI and 6 of the 8 hits. It's everyone else who sucked.

In the 6th the Mets started off with two walks, but Pelfrey couldn't get the bunt down. Inexcuseable. Reyes and Murphy went quietly and that was that.

In the 7th Wright and Delgado got on and on the first pitch to Beltran he squared to bunt? Why? He does this so often, and every time I hear he's doing it on his own. Why doesn't Manuel tell him "don't bunt on your own. Don't bunt ever, you're too good a hitter. Our bullpen is too bad to EVER play for just one run. Get up there and get a hit." Then on 0-1 Beltran swung at a pitch in the dirt and his at bat was wasted. When Church grounded into a double play the Mets had wasted two great chances to add to their lead.

With 17 games to go the Mets held a 3 1/2 game lead over the Phillies. During the last 10 games the Mets went 4-6 and the Phillies went 9-1. Sure seems like a replay of last year.

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