Sunday, July 08, 2007

Hands Across Houston

So many little sleep.

There was no way the Mets could lose after a catch like Carlos Beltran's catch on Saturday, could they?

Well, yeah...see: Chavez, Endy for reference.)

Yes, they have become proficient for losing games which contain a "catch of the year" candidate. And with the Houston Astros putting two, three, heck seemingly five runners on base per inning, there was ample opportunity to lose this game...especially when entrusted into such normally undependable hands such as Guillermo Motas hands, Scott Schoeneweis' hands, and Aaron Sele's hands.

Of course, it would have never gotten that far if the same Carlos Beltran as seen in the fourteenth inning would have done a little better than 0 for 6 prior.

It may not have gotten that far if Paul Lo Duca didn't try to take third base with two outs in the ninth, proving that one only needs the brain of an ostrich to feel he has the speed of a gazelle.

It may not have gotten that far if Tony Randazzo had given Tom Glavine a third strike against Morgan Ensberg.

It may not have gotten that far if the Mets hadn't made Woody Williams look like Walter Johnson, or the rest of the Astros bullpen look like the Four Horsemen of Notre Dame.

But you're glad it went that far, aren't you? You're glad you witnessed that incredible in the fourteenth, where Carlos Beltran ran up Tal's Hill and cradled the Luke Scott certain game winning blast into his glove as if he was John Stallworth gathering in a touchdown with his fingertips in the enemy end zone of the old Municipal Stadium, and subsequently getting pelted with dog biscuits by the Browns faithful. What could they have thrown at Beltran in Houston? Pulled pork? Nachos? Aggie fans?

(Editor's note: Football reference works here, since Tom Glavine's revelation on Saturday that wearing the Earl Campbell helmet in the clubhouse was the lucky helmet that gave the Mets their winning runs in the seventeenth. See that, Astros fans? You can't even depend on your native son to bring you luck. What's next, Jose Valentin breaks out of his slump while wearing Clyde Drexler's wristbands?)

And how many times do you see it: A guy makes a great catch to end an extra inning, and who comes up...three innings later to win the game in the seventeenth, but that same guy? Uncanny, isn't it? Well actually you never see if you stayed up for it, you're glad you did.

You're glad you saw that catch, and the subsequent RBI to turn a horrific 0-for-6 into the best 1-for-7 you've ever seen. You're glad you saw David Wright's four hits in eight at-bats, including his big tying HR in the seventh. You're glad you got through all those tense moments of Mota, Schoeneweis, and Sele...because baserunners or not, all moments involving those three seem to be tense. You're glad you saw a game that really should have been a playoff game, especially set against the backdrop of Houston, and 1986, and Mike Scott (who may or may not have had his "box of tricks" found by Woody Williams which would explain how a guy who had one swing and miss all of his last game struck out six Mets on Saturday), and the sixteen inning game against which all sixteen inning games are judged.

Saturday night may have set a standard for which all future seventeen inning games must match.

People may say that this is the potential turning point of the season, the point that brings this club closer together. More likely, this is the game that enabled the Mets to get their first good night's sleep in a while...however short it may be considering they have a game in less than eleven hours from now. But no matter what this game does for the team besides gain a game on our closest competitors, it certainly makes this blogger feel a whole lot better about things. Now, just maybe, I can get a good night's sleep.

Hopefully, you will too.


dmg said...

great post -- the game became part of the club's lore with that catch, but i was never sure they were going to win it. and it seemed crucial that they do so.

keith and gary were fun to listen to. (for once, hernandez wasn't whining about getting some sleep. not too much, anyway.) meanwhile, the way the defense held was inspiring. especially after the beltran catch, i had the feeling no one wanted to mess up. so many plays: how about the doubleplay wright started at third with two on and one out in the 15th -- or was it the 16th?

for a first-place team, the mets really are getting by with crazy glue and bailing wire. but let it be noted that ruben gotay sure seemed awfully good, that rickey ledee handled left field as well as you could hope and that julio franco DELIVERED A CLUTCH BASE HIT!

it took all that and more. one for the personal books.

Mike said...

I agree with DMG -- great defense all around. A bag-ful 'o tricks by Reyes, a very sweet DP by Wright in the 15th (?), and of course on of the greatest catches I've ever seen by Beltran. Wow.

Fun game, but I doubt I'd say that if they'd lost. Maybe the challenge of Oswalt will wake the bats today.

c.1970 said...

Let's thank the blog's author for mentioning "Walter Johnson." The "Mets making [enter scrub pitcher's name] look like Cy Young" has become rather overused in 2007, much like "thrown under the bus" (x-ref Coughlin, Tom; NY Giants) was last year.

JAMMQ said...

Great game, despite "Send 'em Home" Sandy trying to run the Mets out of yet another inning.

Sandy Alomar, running the Mets out of games, one inning at a time.

Metstradamus said...

Re: Defense, don't forget Carlos Delgado earlier in the game channeling his inner Ferris Fain.