Monday, March 31, 2008

Johantastic

The Major League Baseball schedule maker has been put on this earth to satisfy God's sense of humor. Why else would Opening Monday feature the same two games that ended last season? The Mets opening their season against the Marlins didn't really hold any significance to me until across the television screen came the Nationals in Philadelphia. Just like last season.

The one thing different was the lefty on the mound for the Mets. Last season, it was Tom Glavine. We know how that turned out. This time, a slight upgrade. Johan Santana ... who threw as many innings today as last season's lefty allowed runs ... made today seem like a Disney movie as opposed to last season's slasher flick (where everyone died.)

For as much as has changed since last October, some things remained the same. The David Wright All-Star jersey and the Pedro Martinez spring jersey that I wore last September 30th in case one jersey wasn't working remained in a pile on my chair since then. Takin' Care of Business remained unclicked on my iPod, as well as Juelz Santana's The Second Coming, the song the Mets hit the field to last season. All unchanged ... a shrine to the disappointment of last season's results.

Today, the Petey jersey left the chair, and my iPod wasn't afraid to visit a couple of old favorites. It's opening day, and the results were more desirable. Boy, we could have used today's results last year, eh? Especially since today's results are a mere first step towards the healing process, of which the Mets have one and only shot at. Win this season, and '07 is a blip on the radar. Disappoint your fans again in '08, and '07 becomes that much worse. Today was a great start.

For as much as Mark Hendrickson's fastballs magically found their way towards the middle of the plate, it was the job of the Mets to hit them. In the fourth inning, they did. Beltran hit one hard for a double. Angel Pagan hit one hard for a double. Ryan Church hit one hard for an RBI single. Even Brian Schneider hit one hard for a loud out. Those and a couple of walks set up David Wright, who spent less of his time doing endorsements to be more prepared for a spot like this: bases loaded, up 3-0 with an opportunity to "stomp on their throats" as it were. And guess what? He crushed a Hendrickson fastball for a double to double the lead.

Outside of the fourth inning, which came after a long Met rally which surely made him rusty, Johan Santana was every bit as advertised. It wasn't one of those "Nervous jitters/five runs and five walks in five innings" debuts, but it was a game that showed you what you should be able to expect from Santana on an every fifth day in, every fifth day out basis. Sure, it was the Marlins. But he blew eight Marlins away in seven innings to go along with three hits, two walks, and lots of good feelings to make a difference and start to wash away what happened in 2007.

And away we go.

8 comments:

Ceetar said...

Works for me. Squish the fish!

Kevin said...

Just awsome. And after seeing Glavins first start I feel even better. Lets go Mets baby!!

Mike said...

Ahhhhhhhhhh.

katherine said...

I am deeply pondering the significance of Carlos Beltran's new hair style - longer with blond highlights.
Is there any connection between his snazzy new "do" and his uncharacteristically boastful "We're the Team to Beat" comment?
I have decided it's a good thing - maybe this year he won't be so sensitive and moody.

MetFanMac said...

That picture is either awesomely bad or badly awesome.

Benny Agbayani said...

Metstra

Your comment on Pedro's health in your NL East predictions was almost prophetic! Injured again. His signing has been a bust and everyone should start acknowledging it. They could have used him for a win down the stretch last year and he wasn't there. Now a new injury just as things are getting started. Now you see why people were crying foul for giving a fourth year to a guy his age. He was hardly on the disabled list in his career prior to the Mets.

One problem with your predictions Metstra...while I like the Mets for the division over the Phills...I am shocked that you are taking them to the NLCS over teams with much superior pitching...such as the Padres, D-Backs, Dodgers, and Rockies. Brad Lidge is not enough to plug all of the holes that the Phillies have. The lineup will only go so far. Cole Hamels + what = what?

Metstradamus said...

Benny,

L.A. and Colorado I like. Arizona and San Diego I don't. Neither of those teams can hit. The Phillies, unfortunately, find a way to overcome their flaws until they prove otherwise.

Metstradamus said...

As for Pedro,

I can't call his signing a bust, simply because his signing was the one that facilitated the Beltran signing, which facilitated every other big name to come to Flushing. Signing Petey, injuries and all, is better than not signing Petey.