Monday, August 07, 2006


The second baseman made the out, and a streak was born.

For Orel Hershiser, it was Steve Sax that converted Tracy Jones' grounder into the first out of 59 scoreless.

For Don Drysdale, it was Luis Alcaraz fielding a Don Kessinger grounder to start the Dodgers' 1-0 win against the Cubs, and Drysdale's original standard of 58 and 2/3's scoreless inning streak.

While it's too soon to start dreaming about a sentence of Hershiser, Drysdale, and Maine, Bangor's streak also started with a second baseman...Jose Valentin grabbing a pop up off the bat of Aramis Ramirez to innocently start his scoreless streak, now at 23 innings. (Can a scoreless streak start off anything but innocently? I mean, nobody gives up a run and then gets an out and sends everybody in a tizzy running around screaming "Ooooooh, here comes that big 65 inning scoreless streak!" Man, I can be an idiot sometimes. But you do have to start somewhere.)

Unfortunately, it's going to take a lot longer for Maine to reach the plateau of 59 and 1/3 if he keeps getting pulled after six innings while throwing 107 pitches (or keeps working on nine days rest). Drysdale and Hershiser basically went nine innings every time out. Did you know that Orel Hershiser not only went 10 innings in that last start against San Diego to cap the streak, but pitched two complete games immediately before the streak started? Meanwhile, in 1968, Don Drysdale went 10 innings twice in games that weren't even part of the streak?

It's just the way the game goes.

But hey, John Maine's 23 inning scoreless streak for a player of his relative lack of stature is impressive nonetheless. Tonight's win came off a team that has probably the most formidable lineup he's faced so far...even without Bobby Abreu. Most impressive was Bangor's ability to get out of some sticky jams as he did in the first inning striking out Ryan Howard with first and third in the initial frame with one out...and in the sixth, striking out Pat Burrell and Aaron Rowand with first and third.

Maine's streak continues to let the Mets take a couple of breaths about where their starting pitching is. But be afraid Met fans, be very afraid. I don't want to say this can't last (hell I've photoshopped John Maine with two of the best pitchers ever), but not only are tapes of Bangor going to start to get around, but tonight's national television exposure only exacerbates the tip off to the rest of the National League. It's fun to have a fourth starter go on a run like this though, so I'm going to enjoy it while it lasts.

Someone who is looking over my shoulder at this very moment is screaming at me...he's saying that now that I'm mentioning Bangor in the same sentence as Hershiser and Drysdale, Maine's streak is probably doomed. And I just want to say: that's the stupidest thing I've ever heard...that something I've said could affect the outcome of a baseball game. Like I can jinx a scoreless streak. I mean, when he says things like that, he must be a slave owning Nazi. Doesn't he know how cretinous he sounds? He makes no sense! I mean that statement is part Slobodan Milosevic, and part Genghis Khan! He's stupid! There is no God!

Why is my eye bleeding?


Speaking of yahoo Yankee baseball announcers, Paul O'Neill came up with an interesting theory during today's Orioles game...apparently, Yankee fans don't necessarily hate the Mets anymore because former Yankee Willie Randolph is managing the team.

Yeah Paul, and Met fans are singing Kumbaya in the Bronx because former Met Joe Torre won all those championships with the Yankees. Me thinks Paul has had one too many ricochets of batting helmets he's thrown in disgust to the head.


And why does Joe Morgan bother me? He's another one during tonight's Mets game trying to turn the Bobby Abreu salary dump into some sort of master plan by Pat Gillick..."Oh well that lineup had numbers but were they consistent?" Blah blah blah.

Hello? Joe? They're third from the bottom in the NL in pitching? Hello?

If Pat Gillick wasn't on a budget, Bobby Abreu would still be a Phillie!

Can't anybody here announce this game?


Hopefully, salary dumps like Bobby Abreu aren't going to happen anytime soon in Queens, and the Mets took steps in that direction with the recent fair signings of Jose Reyes and David Wright. We were all worried about it a while back, but they did the correct thing with both players, and at reasonable prices on both ends for the club, giving them flexibility for the future.

You know Reyes is happy with the financial security, having hit a grannie tonight that brought the house down.


Baseball Tonight is starting their "Best Web Gems Of All Time" series, where the panel picks the three best defensive plays for each franchise all time.

For our boys, you have to consider Ron Swoboda and Tommie Agee from the World Series, and of course, David Wright's barehander.

But for what it's worth, and for my money, the most incredible play ever occurred on June 5th 1987. You may know it as Dwight Gooden's return from his stint at the Betty Ford clinic. I remember it just as much for the Sid Bream liner to left center field that Mookie Wilson and Lenny Dykstra converged for and slammed faces together at full speed, with arms and legs flying everywhere like a mangled helicopter. Think Carlos Beltran and Mike Cameron with two major differences:
  • Dykstra and Wilson weren't as seriously hurt as Beltran and Cameron (Lenny and Mookie actually stayed in the game), and...
  • Mookie Wilson caught the ball.

For those who remember it (I sure as heck remember it...I was there!), it's gotta be the in the top three...without a doubt.


benny said...

Paul O'Niel is wrong on the Yankee fans NOT hating the Mets anymore.
I know its silly but one of my co-workers wrote a message on myspace about the Mets not being the best team in NY.
Waiting and waiting for the one date where the Yankees have a better record, choosing and waiting for a specific date is pretty pathetic.
So the Mets kick ass since Opening Day and he then wonders:


I told him to hop off the Mets' nuts and worry about the Red Sox, White Sox, and Twins. The Mets on the other hand are comfy.

I can't wait until October to remind him of his stupid ass message. Gotta love Yankee fans though just when you forget and ignore them they come back and remind you why you love them soo much.

elliot said...

Good point on Morgan, prophet. He didn't do his homework, either. When they talked about the Mets pitching issues, they didn't include the fact that Maine is making his first start after winning a rotation spot, and that he had a 17 inning scoreless streak going. For a nation-wide audience who was not as familiar with the Mets as we fans are, they didn't give any clue as to what was really going on.

Also, Morgan said that Ryan Howard was going to be a great hitter for years to come because he moves his head up and down during his swing in a way that reminded him of Willie Stargell. Then, in a later AB when Howard got a single without moving his head, Morgan said that he got that hit because he kept his head still, and that moving a head was a problem that Howard would have to correct.

Can someone buy me a new laptop so that I can listen to the Gameday broadcast on Sunday nights and turn the sound down on my TV?

Toasty Joe said...

I absolutely remember that play where Mookie and Nails smacked faces. As I recall, Mookie was wearing sunglasses which shattered when they hit Lenny's face, making the crash even more dangerous that it otherwise would've been. A miracle that one of them wasn't blinded.

Unser said...

1. Swoboda.
2. Agee - the one in left center, which he snow coned on the run.
3. Can a throw count as a web gem? If so, Melvin Mora, Game 4 of the 1999 Division Championship Series against Arizona where he nailed the potential winning run at the plate in the 8th with a great throw from left, keeping the score tied. No Mora, no Pratt, no series (possibly).

Wright's bare-hander was acrobatic, but not nearly as meaningful as Mora's.

If I hear Jon Miller say BelTRAN again, I might lose it.

Mike said...

I remember the collision well. It combined the sheer skull-thudding gruesomeness of the Beltran-Cameron collision, with the helicopter fun-ride aspect of the 1984 Nat Moore spin-o-rama at the hands of Fernanza Burgess and some other Jet defensive secondary stiff (bonus fact: the Jets ended up getting killed that game).

And, no, I'm not a lifelong Jet fan burning in an eternal flame of bitterness, crushed dreams, and hallucinatory visions of AJ Duhe.

I only play one on television.

Anyhow I agree that Joe Morgan's an idiot, that the Wright/Reyes deals are the greatest thing to happen to me since I lost my cherry, and this whole John Maine thing is officially weird. In fact, I agree so wholeheartedly, I already posted on all three topics this morning. Give it a whirl.

Finally, Metstra, you put Maine between Don & Orel in your photoshop special (at least you didn't follow Toasted Joe & put a dildo on his head! -- sorry Joe). Are you positing that Maine is The Bridge between those two all-timers?

Not disagreeing (read: I'm disagreeing), just asking (read: being a dick).

Toasty Joe said...

It was a UNICORN HORN, dammit!

Anonymous said...

Dude, that's a penis.

Anon 10:46 said...

Brings new meaning to the word "Dickhead"

Mike said...

Let this be a lesson to all of you: if you use photoshop without the requisite skill, it's only a matter of time til your readers will think you have a thing for dildos on the foreheads of not-quite-rookie pitchers received in trades for injuryiprone husbands of wacky, silicon-impanted chicks who can't keep their mouths shut.

Of course, you'd think the other conclusion -- that you just suck at photoshop -- is just as likely. But like pulling the inside straight, it just never turns out that way, does it?

* * *

As for me, I have the artistic ability of an autistic chimp with his arms amputated. But my wife's a graphic designer who can do photoshop in her sleep.

When you finally see a doctored photo on my site (and there ain't been one yet), rest assured I'll have had as much to do with it as Steve Phillips.

JohnF said...

Ken O'Brien's favorite receiver was?

A.J. Duhe

AJ Duhe was my HERO!! God, I hate the Jets.

Mike said...

Au contraire, mon frere.

That was Richard Todd. But the end result is much the same.

Shari said...

Hey Mestradamus-Joe Morgan bugs me also, he was a great player but that doesn't always transfer over to the broadcasting booth.

Ed in Westchester said...

Nothing like a football "fan" who knows his history eh?

johnf - go back to your football history books my friend. Are you getting your "facts" from Paul Mcguire?

Mets Guy in Michigan said...

"Me thinks Paul has had one too many ricochets of batting helmets he's thrown in disgust to the head."


andrew said...

I think it was Joe Morgan who, last night, called Pelfrey "Mike Peltry" two or three times.

Metstradamus said...

Mike, I wish there was a distinct message to my madness. What I'm actually trying to portray is that I could only find Hershiser and Drysdale pictures at certain points in their motion, making my options limited.

And cut Toasty a little slack...I conisder unicorn horns a high level of difficulty when it comes to photoshopping. That's a difficult one. ;)

Metstradamus said...

And Ken O'Brien didn't have a favorite receiver...he spent too much time running for his life and on his back to realize he even had receivers!

Mike said...

I'll not have this fudgery & falsity!

Ken O'Brien, while certainly spending most of his Jet career "on his back," never ran a yard in his life.

If O'Brien ran a race against Mike Piazza -- wearing his catcher's gear & giving Robin Ventura a piggyback ride -- O'Brien still loses.