Tuesday, April 20, 2004

Game 14 - Mets
Give Us Your Tired, Your Poor, The Wretched Refuse . . . We'll Find a Way to Lose to Them

Expos 2, Mets 1
Record: 6-8

At least last year we didn't have to see the Mets play the dreadful Tigers, which no doubt would have resulted in at least one loss to one of the worst teams ever fielded. As soon as my cohort posts the inaugural Expos Watch, the Mets drop a bad one to them. Within hours. To Rob I simply say: Wow, the Red Sox are really clicking on all cylinders right now. Probably destined for one hell of a year unless some bad breaks come their way.

Al Leiter pitched a great game for seven innings, allowing just one run. Enter David "Foul" Weathers, who proved that he had more ability to give up a run in his little pinky than Leiter had in his whole body. One batter, one run allowed. Stellar. And what with the Mets sponsoring Expos Emulation Night, Weathers' mistake was enough to chalk up a bad loss to a bad team. There were more zeroes in the Mets' box score than in Mo Vaughn's well-earned 2004 salary (or you could say more goose eggs than on the farm he bought with the money he was paid for doing nothing, or more doughnuts than in his breakfast regimen that caused him to weigh 600 pounds and destroy his knees, or any other bitter metaphorical stretch). But the Mets' weak hitting (4 hits, 2 walks, 1 run) is certainly understandable when you have to run the gauntlet of Zach "Try to Remember My Name for a" Day, Luis "Ayala My Name Out and Still Nobody Knows Who I Am," and Rocky "Well, I got me a fine wife, I got me old fiddle, when the sun's comin' up I got cakes on the griddle, life ain't nothin' but a funny, funny" Biddle. (Sorry, it was either that or Rocky "Little in the" Biddle "And He Got Much Back.") My point, somewhere in that muck, is that these guys aren't exactly having their baseball cards taken in to collector shops for pricing. But then again, which Expos are? Possibly Jose Vidro, whose homer beat the Mets tonight. Wow, it's like a "Seinfeld," it all wrapped up so far-fetchedly neat there.

The AP recap of this game states: "They [the Expos] are the first team to not score more than four runs in each of its first 14 games since the 1988 Texas Rangers, according to the Elias Sport Bureau." Yes, that is certainly awful, to be sure. Fast fact: the 2003 New York Mets scored more than four runs just once (Game 11) in its first 15 games, so let's not be looking down our nose too much at the lowly Expos. Despite hours of counseling, hypnosis, and shock therapy, I cannot forget last year's Mets.

And on the (even) lighter side of things, while flipping between the Braves' loss to the Reds, the Birds' drubbing of the D-Rays, and the slow painful drag of a Mets loss served up in skittle-sized niblets on the ESPNews ticker (I miss the Extra Innings package slightly less than college, slightly more than the Wendy's SuperBar), I happened upon a commercial that I swear on the future of the Mets season I thought was fake. As the "here's how to order" screen came and faded, I sat there waiting for the punchline, some clowning from Comedy Central or National Lampoon or the Sons of Sam Horn. It was just so bad, so utterly preposterous, it was pure gold for joke-makers in Red Sox Nation, and even over in Mets Township. Somebody come on and let me in on this gag.

The Major League Baseball Players Association has apparently authorized the implementation of the new New York quarter. The back of the coin features a picture of the state, the Statue of Liberty, and "Gateway to Freedom." The front of the quarter depicts the State of New York's greatest leader since its acceptance into the union in 1788: Alex Rodriguez. Umm . . . excuse me? I mean . . . what? Uhhh . . . pardon me? There is no way in the world this isn't a joke, right? I'm going to feel pretty silly when someone explains that it's a big Internet hoax that somehow spread into TV.


A colorized (as if it's not freakish enough, they colorize it) picture of A-Rod appears on the quarter, which sells for $19 (act now for the special offer of $9.95 plus S&H!) but is still real currency (25 cents, people). Only in New York will people pay $19 for a quarter. Limit 5 coins per person, since they don't want the mentally disabled people of the five boroughs getting conned too bad by this.

Now Alex Rodriguez is the latest in a long line of famous statesmen to appear on coins: G-Wash, T-Jeff, A-Linc, F-Roos, A-Rod. Nice. This well-beyond-tacky display, one which makes zubaz pants look like pleated dress slacks, is only made more ridiculous by A-Rod's miserable start to the season. Good thing these quarters cost so much -- Yanks fans might start throwing rolls of them at him from the bleachers. The commercial and website refer to him as "the next 'Pride of the Yankees.'" Oh, my. Somewhere in heaven, Lou Gehrig and Gary Cooper just threw up on each other. This whole thing is obviously ludicrous to the point of being obscene, but it's also the most painfully premature thing I've seen since high school. I'm just keeping my fingers crossed for a quick cure to Alex Rodriguez's Disease.

Please, somebody, anybody, straighten me out and tell me it's a prank. It sure would be a dandy.

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