Wednesday, August 03, 2005

WWII (2-Game Win-Streak)

Games 103 through 106 - Mets

Astros 5, Mets 2
Astros 2, Mets 0
Mets 9, Astros 4
Mets 9, Brewers 8 (11)
Record: 54-52

Whew. That was a nice win last night, coming back from the incident we'll call "What Victor Did" to rally multiple times and notch the victory. The wild win prevented what would have been the fourth consecutive series in which the Mets dropped Game 1, and in turn prevented outrageous, unfounded accusations by a certain Mets blog-driver that Willie Randolph's lack of fire was defusing the Mets' verve. Thanks go out to the Mets for avoiding that pickle.

Except Victor Zambrano. As we approach the 60th anniversary of the events at Hiroshima and Nagasaki, namby-pamby Zamby's impression of an atomic bomb detonation lasted but an inning and a third, but oh, what damage can be incurred in a short time with a big bomb. Seven hits -- four of them home runs -- and six earned runs. 10 minutes proved not nearly enough time for Rick Peterson to fix Zambrano's problems, but 10 minutes were about all Zambrano's problems needed to fix the Mets but good.

Enter Aaron "Zieg" Heilman. After collecting the win on Sunday for an inning of work, he was pressed into duty in the second because of the aforementioned meltdown. Heilman went two and two-thirds, pitching well and keeping the game close. Meanwhile, with Tomo "row I Won't Be Sore, 'Cause I Could Only Go 4" Ohka on the hill, ain't no mountain high enough, ain't no valley low enough. The Mets battled all the way back, concluding with that free pass/RBI issued to Mike "I'm Not Enola Gay" Piazza.

High praise goes out Mike Cameron, who seems reivigorated since the trade deadline came and went without a new set of poly-blends coming to him. Four hits, including the tater that tied it up in the ninth. He wasn't alone, though, as Miental Case reached base five times, David Wright smacked a ball over the wall in right-center, and Ramon Castro added a couple more hits (despite leaving eight men on base, which is rather remarkable in a 2-for-6 night). Everyone hit well, and everyone was clutch -- including the bench guys, who added two more to up their league-leading total to 45 pinch-hits. The PH-balanced Mets (sorry) are hitting over .350 in those spots, and it's made a difference in their game results and my gut feeling about this team. As an unnamed crooner once sang, "You've got to have faith."

Everyone hit well, that is, except Carlos Beltran. He hit four grounders to first base, one of them good for a DP, and went 0-for-6. The one ball he didn't drive into the ground was a lineout to right that also doubled up Miguel Cairo, who was stealing on the play. Carlos, give us something, anything. With Kaz Matsui still a few rehab starts away from reprising his steady suck at Shea, the blanket of boos is coming your way until further notice.

So where are we now? Last place, 7.5 games back of the peaking-at-the-wrong-time Braves, 4 games out of the wild card. El Wildo Cardo is currently held by the Houston Astros. If only there were a quick and direct way to gain ground on those guys. Oh, wait. Can't worry about the pants-wettings of last week, however, when your hands (and bladders) are full with the still-scrappy Brew Crew. Pedro goes tonight against the 3-11 Victor Santos. Here's hoping for the most boring, goes-as-expected nine innings possible. Put me to sleep, Petey.

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