Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Waste Not, Frost Not

Ugh. I've got this horrible, creaky, aching feeling right now, which means one of two things: either I'm getting old, or I just spent another ill-advised April night at Citi Field and I'm only now starting to get feeling back in my extremities.

Or perhaps it's both.

Tuesday night was one of the more unbearably cold games I've attended at Citi Field, which for whatever reason seems to circulate cold air in such a way that it's simply piercing. I'm not sure if it's the way the stadium is oriented, because Center Field faces more towards Flushing Bay whereas Shea Stadium was angled so Center Field faced the picturesque Flushing skyline, or because Shea Stadium was open on one side and Citi Field is mostly enclosed, whatever it is, April games at Citi Field are about 134% colder than they were at Shea.

And for some asinine reason I keep showing up.

When they win, it's tolerable. When they lose, it's pretty miserable, and when they lose to the Marlins, by a run, when they squander multiple opportunities to send the opposing pitcher to the showers and waste a virtuoso effort from Noah Syndergaard, and the game takes 3 hours and 17 minutes...well, you get the picture.

Syndergaard, of course, seems impervious to the elements, which I guess can be chalked up to his Norwegian Danish heritage (it sounds Norwegian, I suppose, but it figures he's of Danish descent. Most things from Denmark are pretty awesome). All he did over his 7 innings of work was perform the Baseball version of the Vulcan neck pinch on the Marlins, striking out 12 and allowing only 1 run on 5 hits, all of them of the blooper/bleeder/Marlinish variety. You could say all sorts of superlatives about his first two starts this season, but really, I'm not terribly surprised. You could see this coming. Syndergaard was on fire from the first pitch he threw, and after fanning Giancarlo Stanton and Nickleback to start the 2nd, fans were giving him a standing ovation like it was the 9th inning before he Kd Derek Dietrich to finish the inning.

But, alas, it was mostly for naught, as the Mets bats were once again as cold as the April air. They had Jose Fernandez on the ropes early; Lucas Duda made a pretty lousy baserunning play to short-circuit one rally, and in the 2nd they had the bases loaded and Fernandez grousing at the umpire and snapping at the baseball before David Wright swung at a sucker pitch and flew out. From there, Fernandez settled in and even though he only went through 5 innings the Mets offense acted like a bunch of Marlins.

The Marlins acted like Marlins too, because that's what they do, and after 7 innings of striking out against Syndergaard, Jim Henderson entered the game and basically gassed himself trying to get out Dee Gordon. In typical Marlin fashion, Gordon fouled off a dozen pitches before hitting a stink bomb into left for a single, and right then and there I knew the Mets were fucked. Not only was he guaranteed to steal second but Henderson was done, and eventually walked Yelich and Stanton before departing for a Marlin-like combination of pitchers and pinch-hitters and then Jerry Blevins allowed the game-winning Sacrifice Fly. The Mets, of course, acted like Syndergaard had materialized on the mound for Miami and struck out a bunch of times.

This game sucked, and this is one of those games where I start to wonder what the hell I'm doing. It was probably about 40˚š at Citi Field last night and I'm probably being generous because it felt no warmer than 20˚. I watch Syndergaard pitch his ass off for 7 innings, allow one run because of an overturned call (you knew Celebrity Manager pulling some prick move would figure in somehow) and about 130' worth of singles, and then the Mets lose because the Marlins. Really? You can't somehow figure out a way to win a game like this? This was a 2-1 game that lasted 3 hours and 17 minutes, and there weren't a ton of in-game moves or crotch grabbing. Syndergaard works at a brisk pace. So you know, then, that it was the Marlins' fault. They're such a chicken-shit franchise that they can't even win a game properly. Not that the Mets are great shakes right now, either. I know there was some grousing about the way Terry Collins managed the bullpen but what difference would it have made? So Collins brings in Familia in the 8th inning and instead of the Mets losing 2-1 in 9 innings, they lose 2-1 in 15 innings? I'll say this, if the game had gone 15 innings, I sure as shit wouldn't have stuck around for the end of it.

I'm not that much of a masochist. Or maybe I am. I don't know.

No comments: