Game 111 - Mets
Mets 8, Cubs 3
For an event that seemed a month or so late, it was right on time. Last night Tom Glavine finally summited the 300-win apex we've been talking about for years -- if only in far-off, maybe-we-should-re-sign him discussions. It all came together at Wrigley Field on national television to close out a weekend full of media-stomped milestones. There were probably more satisfying scenarios for the dramatic among us (in Atlanta, perhaps), but that's hardly Glavine's way. His workmanlike demeanor is part of what's kept him at arm's length amid the Townshippers, but as he came down this personal stretch, most of us began to open the arms for a well-deserved bear hug.
And just as quickly we're back to work.
Because the stage was so properly set for last night's win, everything neatly falling into place was unsurprising. Glavine plating the first run with a single after 'Stings stole second with two outs and the pitcher batting seemed about right. Alfonso Soriano pulling up lame (not in the same way he did in the '03 World Series) was unfortunate, but the fact that it killed a potentially big inning made it seem just. Guillerrible Mota and Pedreadful Feliciano looked to undo all of the good that TG did in his six-plus frames of work, but Aaron (formerly Errant) Heilman got the third out to stay the course. Of course. And the Mets knocking out 16 hits as if they do it all the time was right in line with this game's destiny. Even Luis Castillo went 4-for-5 before leaving with cramps. (We'll leave out the snide Back to School rejoinder there, if only to keep things positive.)
The most important aspect of last night's victory for Glavine was that now we can put this behind us. It's curious -- but not shocking in the least -- that while those of us in the Mets' sliver of the blogosphere have had little more than a few asides regarding the 300th win all along, each of the bigger sports media outlets have had, as Bob Marley would put it, so much things to say. For us, it's a nice moment but not what we're really tuned in to see. But hey, ESPN . . . go crazy. See if you can scientifically, 100% conclusively determine whether there will actually be another 300-game winner. Then re-run the segment after Randy Johnson wins his.
Would we have dissertation-depth bloggings if Tom Glavine weren't destined for an A-cap in Cooperstown? If he were (here we go) a real Met? Well . . .
Okay, I'll say this. God willing and the creek don't rise, if David Wright and Jose Reyes reach some storied milestones years from now -- still wearing the royal blue and blaze orange, mind you -- you can be sure that (presuming I'm still kicking) there will be 3,000 words on the glory of our lads that I'll write and you won't read. That said, Glavine is the only player to have been on the New York Mets' active roster since Misery Loves Company's inception in April of 2003. He's got 58 wins as a Met, placing him 13th all-time (one win from 11th and one season from displacing Steve Trachsel in the Top 10). This speaks volumes about Glavine's place in Met history, despite our slow-to-accept stance. (Uh, it also speaks volumes about the leaflet that is the Mets' record book, that he could be that high up in the all-time rankings, but I digress.)
He's as real a Met as nearly anyone donning the colors these days, whether we fully embrace him or not. He's a Hall of Fame pitcher, he's the guy the Mets are calling "ace" right now, and I can tell you one thing: we'd sure rather he were a "true Brave" in a Met uniform winning #300 than still in a Brave uniform doing the same. Tom Glavine doesn't need my say-so, but he's a Met and that's all that matters.
Okay, that's enough. Time to move on. 301 upcoming, and far more significantly, a pennant run that goes through "The Cradle of Liberty" (though the Statue resides in N.Y.) and "The City Too Busy to Hate" (but wait . . . we're not too busy). The Phils and Braves aren't going away any time soon, so let's brace ourselves for a showdown, starting Tuesday against the real Braves at Shea. Game on.