Thursday, April 14, 2016

Just Standing Around

The Mets finally had one of these 2-1 games against the Mickey Mouse Marlins go in their favor on Wednesday afternoon, which was about damn time because I have the feeling that if they had another one of these games where the pitchers gave up 1 or 2 runs and lost they might have revolted and staged a hostile takeover of the lineup (Syndergaard in CF?).

Actually, if the Mets had managed to lose and get swept, there might have been a fan revolt altogether. It's become a bit of a divisive thing among fans; I understand why some people might feel a need to panic, this not-hitting thing can become epidemic real fast, plus look, even though it's not possible, and even though the Mets are inevitably going to lose at least 70 or so times this season, you still want them to go out and win every game. This sort of knee-jerk panic doesn't really sit well with the hard-liners, though. I consider myself in this faction of fans, based on tenure and the fact that I've seen this sort of thing go on so many times. Still, it worries me that the Mets have broken from the gate kind of slow; it sort of gives you the slow, sinking sensation that this season could dissolve into 2001 or 2007.

But the Mets continue to get wonderful pitching, which sort of stems that panic from really taking hold. Logan Verrett, getting the start in the Jacob deGrom spot, did a fine job, as has been his wont over the past couple of years. Verrett did what Syndergaard accomplished on Tuesday, which is keep the Marlins at bay for 6 innings, while everyone else just sort of stood around and waited for someone to do something on offense. They didn't mange much off of Adam Conley, whom I believe threw a similarly strong game against the Mets last season and has all the makings of one of those Randy Tomlin-types whose career is defined by several middling seasons on bad teams, but just eats the Mets for lunch every time out. The fact that the Mets had their weekday afternoon lineup didn't help either; I was shocked that David Wright was playing at all, after slogging it out on a frigid night on Tuesday, but there he was, with Wilmer Flores at 1st, and Juan Lagares in Center.

It wasn't until the 7th inning of a scoreless game that I finally had a moment at work to pull up MLB Gamecast at my station, and when you pull up a game mid-stream, you sort of have that moment of trepidation because you hope you're not going to land on a page that says MIA 6, NYM 1, top 7. But it was 0-0, which I was relieved by, because although the Mets weren't hitting, they also weren't losing. By this point Verrett had left, replaced by Jim Henderson, who was clearly reeling from his unsuccessful performance on Tuesday (and clearly isn't quite yet fit for heavy work on back-to-back days), and whose poor performance yesterday required Hansel Robles and Jerry Blevins to bail him out. Which, fortunately, they did.

Finally, the Mets broke through in the last of the 7th in a rather excruciating 2-run rally that took forever to develop and took a hit from Kevin Plawecki for the Mets to cash in, and even then Plawecki got thrown out trying to steal an extra base on the play. Regardless, it gave the Mets the lead and by that point you figured that would be it for them. Blevins got part of the way through the 8th before Collins went to Jeurys Familia for a 5-out Save after using him in each of the previous two games. So already that was playing with fire a little bit, and Familia gave up a couple of hits and an RBI single to Nickleback but managed to survive that and the 9th, and the Mets managed to salvage a win to close out a less-than-impressive homestand.

So, now the Mets go on the road for the next several days, to Cleveland, Philadelphia and Atlanta. This should be a good thing for them. The Mets have a long and storied history of going gangbusters on the road whenever they struggle at home, and sometimes it seems like whatever camaraderie develops on a road trip seems to carry them through games. It might wake up the offense. Who knows.

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