Friday, October 20, 2006

Joke of the day

Q: What is differenat about the Braves', Yankees', and Mets' seasons?

A: Tee times.

OK, joke's over - in all seriousness, that's a crappy way to lose a game and a series. But two things are sticking out in my mind:

1) I can somewhat understand why Heilman came out for the 9th, but I'm wondering why Wagner wasn't brought in for the 9th. Given Willie's tenure under Torre, and Torre's frequent usage of Rivera in the 9th of tie games, I was surprised that did not happen.

2) I really thought the Mets were going to pull off the rally in the bottom of the ninth. That being said, how does Carlos Beltran not take the bat off his shoulder for strike three? How could he not have expected the curveball, when Floyd just struck out on it a couple batters before? How could he not be protecting the plate with a two-strike count, especially in that situation? Bewildering.


paul zummo said...

I think 90% of Mets fans wanted Heilman to stay in. For me it wasn't necessarily distrust in Wagner, but the feeling that Heilman was pitching well and was relatively rested. Keep Wagner ready for extra innings.

The third strike to Beltran was just nasty. Sometimes there is little you can do, but he should have swung.

The decision I am beginning to second guess if batting Cliffy there. Normally I am anti-bunt, but in that situation it would have been second and third with one out. Odds are, Reyes is then walked, bringing up Lo Duca with one out. Now, we can't assume Lo Duca also walks in that situation, but it may have been worth a shot.

Well, I'm already feeling a little better. Pitchers and catchers arrive just in time for my nuptuals.

Big Daddy Jeff said...

Good observations. I also agree with Paul's comments above. As I watched the 9th inning unfold, when Willie pulled Cliff Floyd back for a moment...get this...I was expecting Tom Glavine to put on a helmet in a hurry. It would have been the perfect move. You know Glavine lays down a great bunt. Then you have 2nd and 3rd with only 1 out. If Reyes or LoDuca get a single, you suddenly have a tie game. And Glavine's already in the game to give you an inning or two of relief work.

LaRussa makes that move. Torre makes that move. Randolph didn't. Lots of his moves worked this year. But they stopped working in the NLCS. Perhaps Willie is not as "old-school" as his mentor, afterall. However, the size of his payroll may have affected his judgment much as it has done so for Torre in the last few years. Randolph obviously wanted Floyd or Beltran to be in a position to swing for the fences. And that's why they struggled with Wainright's big hook so much. They were sitting dead red and LaRussa was on top of it.

An all-time classic game, even if Mets fans didn't like the result. The Chavez catch, the pitching performaces, a guy like Molina being the hero, playing the last few games in the rain.....all made for great baseball. I really thought the Mets were going to rally in the 9th too. Regardless, I'm sure Tommy Lasorda was proud watching this game in his tuxedo with SlimFast shakes by his side!

Francase said...

Glavine might have been an interesting move, to lay down a bunt and then come out to pitch in the 10th if it gets tied up. With Floyd, I guess if he draws a walk, gets a base hit and can only make it to 1st, you can pull him for a pinch runner. With a HR, he can run as slow as he wants. Of course, that didn't happen.

That curveball was vicious, but since Beltran had just seen Wainwright throw it past Floyd, I would think he'd be expecting it a little more.

I still would have brought out Wagner for the 9th (and the 10th, if it happened) and then gone to someone else.