Friday, April 14, 2006

Perfect Day

Game 8 - Mets

Mets 13, Nationals 4
Record: 7-1

Such a perfect day. Great seats (thanks, Mike), beautiful afternoon, great friends, cold beers, tasty dogs, and the Mets clubbing the ever-living snot out of the poor Nats. We got to RFK just in time to see three Met homers in the top of the 1st, and the barrage wasn't contained therein. Beltran-Delgado-Wright-Floyd: 9-for-18, 7 ribbies, 8 runs, a dinger apiece. Beltran's was another upper-deck blast that led off the scoring and raised eyebrows throughout. Livan Hernandez sailed cartoon balloons over the plate all day, and it was just one of those games that was over before it really got going. For a change from Mets seasons past, it went in their favor.

"The businessman's special" -- what a worthy concept. Taking in a ballgame on a warm spring day, throwing back beers, gambling extensively, and yukking it up in the lower tier with three longtime friends had me wanting to be nowhere else than right where I was. I could do that every week and it would never lose its flavor, though the fact that I cannot actually do it every week made me that much more appreciative.

Baseball season brings an annual arrival of two things -- baseball fans waxing blathersome (case in point) about the national pastime and the morning dew on the diamond, and non-baseball fans piping up to cast aspersions on the game. Friends, colleagues, strangers, lunatics babbling on the street -- more than ever, people seem to be coming out of the woodwork (around me, at least) to rain on our parade, calling baseball, "slow," "boring," "not a real sport," and "optic drudgery." (Well, that last one is too literary; all poets are baseball fans.) I do my best to represent those taken with the sport with diplomacy -- by berating and belittling the naysayers and their collective lack of intelligence. "It's a thinking man's game, which explains a lot," is a quick retort you should apply to anyone who's sour on baseball. At any rate, days like yesterday have a universal appeal to folks around the dial on baseball fandom; you didn't have to be anything close to a baseball zealot to be seen soaking in the grandeur at the park. It was just that good.

Okay, back out of the Walt Whitman territory of pastoral poetics and into the Whit-man territory of snide sarcasm. Boy, oh, boy, is Jorge Julio something special. The former O (and current O, Lord) had another accident in the eighth inning, and the Mets may be calling AAA very soon. Fortunately, the Nats looked like they had somewhere to be, so Julio's single gopher ball provided only the humor of his haplessness. It seems he is good for some relief, and we all know what kind.

I'm as excited as the rest of Mets Township about the brilliant start and the prospect of a fantastic season, but eight games against shallow talent show us very little. Tonight's game against the newly resuscitated Brewers franchise initiates a stretch that may be a bit more telling. Here's a quote you can scan the first three years of this site and not find (in blue-headered type): I cannot wait to see how the rest of this season unfolds. Let's go Mets.

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