Sometime last April, El Guapo and I attended a Mets/Brewers game on a Friday night at Shea Stadium. It was a rainy night, and the game ended up being delayed for a couple of hours. When the game finally began, we decided to move around to better seats, since what was the point of sitting in UR43 when there were better, drier seats to be had. We sat somewhere around UR11, near a group of young, probably inebriated gentlemen. As the Mets took the field, this is what they were yelling:
"STAND UP, DELGADO!"
Yelling in derision of Delgado's decision to not stand for God Bless America while playing for the Toronto Blue Jays. El Guapo was not amused. We left those seats and found others.
Well, Delgado stated that he would stand for God Bless America when it was played.
Friday night in Atlanta, Delgado stood up in a different way. A way much more important to the Mets cause and in a way that he had done far too infrequently this season.
In a game where the Mets needed it most, Delgado stood up and delivered a mighty blow, one that broke the ice against a tough pitcher in Tim Hudson, gave the Mets a lead that they hadn't had in quite some time, and sent them on their way to a victory that they absolutely had to have.
Speaking of standing up...
The last time John Maine took the mound in a game with this sort of pressure was last October 18th at Shea Stadium. That night, Maine delivered a solid outing enabling the Mets to come away with a much-needed victory.
Friday night, he may have outdone himself. Maine had been scuffling quite a bit in his last few outings, barely being able to pitch himself through the 6th inning, and sometimes not even being able to get that far. But on a night when the Mets needed it most, when the Bullpen, already suspect and depleted, needed a break, Maine delivered one of the finest outings of his young career. With 8 strikeouts mixed in over 7 innings in which he kept a potent Braves lineup in check, Maine not only righted his own ship, he also gave the Bullpen a break, bridging the game straight to Heilman, and then as the Mets put the game away in the 9th, to Schoeneweis. With this outing, Maine earned his 14th victory of the season and further solidified his reputation as a pitcher who we can count on to come up big in a big game.