Saturday, April 23, 2016

That Old Hell Hole

Something that will be oft-repeated around here this season is the fact that this is the last season for Turner Field in Atlanta, and I can't wait for that stadium to be burned to the ground and never spoken of again.

It's sort of asinine that this is happening, but I'm not here to pass judgement on the hot-button civic issues in Atlanta. All that you need to know is that the stadium lasted 20 years before its useful life was deemed finished and the Braves will move to a suburban palace beginning next season.

Left behind, of course, is a stadium where just about nothing has gone right for the Mets. In 20 seasons of playing games in this toilet bowl of a stadium, the Mets have had all matter of breaks go against them and if I'm not mistaken, their record is something like 21-145. Or at least it feels that way. I think the Mets have gone into Atlanta and gotten swept at least once in every season, no matter how good they are, or how bad the Braves are, and over most of this era the Braves have been pretty good. Seasons have died in this ballpark in all manner of cruelty. Yes, there have been many stadia over the league where the Mets have not fared well. No place has been worse to the Mets than Atlanta.

I will, I'm quite certain, have many other barbs to sling at Turner Field over the final 10 games the Mets will play there, so I'll stop for now and get to Friday night's affair, which I didn't actually see because of Passover, but I got word of the happenings from a few sources. It's somewhat fortunate that the Barves of 2016 have basically Houston Astro-ed their roster, stripping themselves down to basically the barest of necessary talent in order to assemble a Major League roster. Thus, they were a good foil for Matt Harvey on this night, since he was able to grit his way through an excruciating 5 inning effort that didn't especially inspire a ton of confidence, but if nothing else was enough to get him and his team a victory. This mostly thanks to Curtis Granderson, who hit a pair of Home Runs, one of them of the Grand Slam variety, off of hapless starter Bud Norris to put the Mets comfortably ahead.

The bullpen covered the rest of the game, and the unit seemed sufficiently recovered from Wednesday night's debacle. Aside from a difficult inning from Antonio Bastardo, the other 4 relievers the Mets charged out there, Jim Henderson, Jerry Blevins, Addison Reed and Jeurys Familia, all pitched well, sandwiching outings around a mysterious 8th inning Rain Delay that dragged the proceedings much later into the evening than necessary. Not that it mattered. If you've been to any Passover Seder, you know that it's all about dragging things much later into the evening than necessary. So I wouldn't have seen anything anyway.

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