Thursday, April 07, 2005

Live from the Nation's Capital (Where You Can't Watch the Nationals on TV)

Game 3 - Mets
Reds 6, Mets 1
Record: 0-friggin'-3

Since I am blog-agog in the early part of this quickly worsening season, I thought I'd take a crack at the play-by-play style my colleague employed a couple of days ago. The game is already underway, so here goes . . . (I'll explain this post's title between innings.)

Top 1st Inning
Tuned in late. Aaron Harang mowed down the Mets in the top of the 1st. On-base specialists Jose Reyes and Kaz Matsui fanned, the latter on three pitches. Just as "Gadzookie" Matsui had trouble seeing the ball off the bat last year, he's missing most of his take signs this year.
Mets 0, Reds 0

Bottom 1st Inning
Kaz II: Electric Boogalo is on the hill. He walks the first batter.
He walks the second batter on four pitches.
Sheesh, I don't know what we were so worried about!!
Sean Casey actually has to swing and wisely hits it at Kaz I: Original Recipe. Good call, as Matsui boots it and a run scores. Another comes home on a sac fly.

Two runs on no hits. How's Jason Phillips doing right about now?
Reds 2, Mets 0

Top 2
David Wright walks and Ramon Castro (in for Piazza on a night-day combo) gets his first hit of the season, but Victor Diaz ends their chances. Ishii is due to lead off next inning. Here's hoping he makes it that far.
Reds 2, Mets 0

Bottom 2
Wily Mo Pena homers on an 0-1 count. Makes you long for the days of walking guys.

No more damage. By the way, the Mets have given up seven first-inning runs in three games so far this year. Oh, I know, it's early, though. Good grief!
Reds 3, Mets 0

Top 3
That was the fastest half-inning ever recorded. The Mets cannot wait to get the hell out of Ohio.
Ishii did bat, and whiff. Reyes popped out and Kaz M. (pronounced "chasm," which is what he represents at the top of this order) grounded out. Stay tuned for the exciting conclusion of which Kaz can have a more putrid afternoon.
Reds 3, Mets 0

Bottom 3
1-2-3 inning! Willie Randolph is quickly rifling through the MLB rule book to make sure the Mets can legally do that.
Reds 3, Mets 0

Top 4
Not to be out-stunk, the Mets counter with a 1-2-3 right back in the Reds' face.
Early returns from today: the potent offense was a fluke, the shabby pitching wasn't. Uh oh.
Reds 3, Mets 0

Bottom 4
Kaz Ishii just struck out the side -- the meat of the order, no less -- on 13 pitches. He's settling in a bit -- the hitters need to reward him for it. Right now.
Reds 3, Mets 0

Top 5
David Wright walked again. Love this kid. Look for him in a Mariners jersey by Bastille Day.

Ramon Castro grounded into a double play. On the plus side, Ramon, Norfolk has really been revitalized in the last 5-10 years.

Victor Diaz made the third out . . . again, meaning the pitcher leads off . . . again. I've seen "A-Team" episode plotlines with fewer holes in it than this game plan.
Reds 3, Mets 0

Bottom 5
A pickle! A two-out, five-throw rundown that results in a tag on Ryan Freel. Nice work, lads. Now, about that hitting . . . the sixth inning will be ours!
Reds 3, Mets 0

Top 6
Oh, yeah, it's Ishii-Reyes-Matsui in the sixth. I meant seventh inning!

Ishii grounds out. Hard to tell from the GameDay, but I'm sure it was a laser at . . . the catcher? Reyes flies out. Matsui swings through Strike Three. Okay, first he was the 2nd-best Japanese guy playing baseball in New York named Matsui. Now he's the 2nd-best Japanese guy who plays for the Mets named Kaz?

He needs a pick-me-up. Hey, Kaz, at least you haven't left any men on base, since--

I know I mockingly ragged Ramon Castro, but it was his bloop to left that's the only thing keeping the Mets from staring at a no-no through six innings. From Aaron Harang. Seriously?
Reds 3, Mets 0

Bottom 6
Another 1-2-3 inning for He/She. I am a big enough man to admit when I am wrong, big enough even to eat several greasy spoon entrees as punishment. I'm not necessarily saying I was wrong about Ishii, I'm just hungry.
Reds 3, Mets 0

Top 7
Aaron Harang had pitched 6 1/3 innings of one-hit shutout ball, but Dave Miley saw the wrecking crew at the back end of the Mets' lineup coming on, so he yanked Harang. Just when I was about to include a bad pun about my "errant harangue" on Kaz Ishii. Damn you, Dave Miley.

Hmmm. New pitcher Ryan Wagner threw two pitches. Mientkiewicz missed the first one on a bunt attempt. The second one he bounced to short for an IEDP. IE means "inning-ending," but it's more of a tip of the cap to Doug "I before E" Mientkiewicz and how it takes me almost as long to type his name as it does for him to chug down to first. Since this poorly organized tangent is off the deep end already (no time to think, game's on!), let me just reference Kaz "I Close One I Before Every E" Matsui and his well-documented vision problems. Thank you very much.
Reds 3, Mets 0

7th Inning Stretch
I added the rant post above about the Nationals not being televised. Ignore as you would any other such piece.

Bottom 7
Ishii plunks Joe Randa. Heh heh heh.
A two-out walk to Jason LaRue. Ugh.
Pinch-hitter D'Angelo Jimenez peppers the piece of cheese Ishii staked him with for a two-run double. Heartburn ensues.
Mike DeJean enters. This could be bad.
DeJean makes quick work of Ryan Freel, meaning he only needs two pitches to give up another run.
Inning over. Game over.
Reds 6, Mets 0

Top 8
By the way, I loved this bit about Mike DeJean over at Flushing Local:

He's not supposed to be Eric Gagne out there. But he isn't supposed to be Gopher
McHitmehard either.
David Wright records the second hit of the Mets' day. You ever see that painting of the post-apocalyptic frontier with barren, desolate devastation abound in grey and one tiny gold flower poking up from the ash? That flower's name is David.

Ramon Castro strikes out swinging. Doumar's, featuring the original hand-rolled ice cream cone since 1907.

Victor Diaz does the same. Somewhere, Mike Cameron is breathing easy.
Marlon Anderson gets another pinch-hit. Somewhere, Kaz Matsui is not.

Hey there! A wild pitch and David Wright scores the first, and likely only, run. We'll take it.
Reyes flies out. Miserable day for Jose, but that thing that misery loves -- he's got plenty.
Reds 6, Mets 0

Bottom 8
Felix Heredia enters. I thought the home team was supposed to provide the fireworks.
Holy crud! (Hey, if the Bad News Bears reference fits . . . ) Heredia got the Reds in order, including two K's. Up is down, down is up, Robert Hernandez and Heredia don't stink, Looper and DeJean do, the Reds will be 3-0, the Mets will be 0-3, I'm blogging a lot, Rob is M.I.A., it's craziness!
Reds 6, Mets 0

Top 9
David Weathers enters. So you're telling me there's a chance.

Just flipped over to what I thought was the Nationals-Phillies GameDay site. Instead, there's just a picture of Peter Angelos there. I knew I didn't jump ship on the Mets for a reason.

Kaz gets out (natch), but Beltran singles and Floyd walks. Here we go . . .

Mientkiewicz flies out, i.e., doesn't get the job done.

David Wright, it's up to you, son. A three-run homer and we'd only need a series of small miracles to win.

Okay, I can't tell what's going on now. GameDay has imploded, is slow and/or broken. This is eerily similar to the technical snafu last year that had me baffled about a game between the Mets and Reds. Too much of a coincidence to be a coincidence?

What's happening??? (Extra question marks because I loved Rerun.)

After abandoning GameDay and ESPN (their last straw was a pop-up ad that covered up the fact that their Play-by-Play text was from the wrong inning), I went to Yahoo, where they already had a recap posted which explained that Piazza had flied to right with the bases loaded to end the game. What a cruddy way to catch the cruddy end of a cruddy game.
Reds 6, Mets 1

Phew. Now I know why my little friend has been on bed rest since he covered a game like this.

0-3 after a season-opening sweep to one of the league's projected doormats. Hmmm.


[Still thinking]

Aha! False sense of security! I get it. [wink] Secret's safe with me, boys.

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