|Jose Reyes turned a hard grounder by the Rockies' Taylor Teagarden into a fielder's choice in the first inning of the Mets' 8-5 victory. (NYTimes.com)|
Reyes capped a 4-hit day with his 14th triple of the year and the Mets benefited from a few blown calls, on the way to an 8-5 series-winning victory over the Rangers.
The Good Stuff:
- Jose got going right from the start with an infield hit and a steal of second (SB #28). He advanced to third on a Carlos Beltran flyball, then came home when catcher Taylor Teagarden let one go to the backstop.
- In the 2nd, singles by Ronny Paulino and Daniel Murphy put runners on the corners with no out. Angel Pagan then hit a groundball to third base, but Adrian Beltre's throw home was off the mark, allowing Paulino to score. After a Ruben Tejada popup, Reyes wasted absolutely no time notching his 39th multi-hit game of the year: his line drive single brought home another.
- Potential Blown Call #1: Justin Turner flew out to right field, deep enough to advance the runners. But Nelson Cruz's throw to third was caught en route and fired over to second. Reyes appeared to be a dead duck, but umpire Jim Reynolds called him safe. Texas manager Ron Washington came out to argue, to no avail. The Rangers felt the sting on the very next pitch, as Carlos Beltran's single brought home both Pagan and Reyes, making it a 4-run 2nd for the Mets and a 5-2 lead.
- Reyes added a third single in the 4th, but the offense remained dormant for a couple innings.
- Potential Blown Call #2: Texas threatened to get closer in the 5th, scoring one before recording an out and putting two runners on. But the air was let out of their tires by umpire Mike DiMuro. cruz hit a groundball to Reyes at short, who fired to Turner at third. Turner couldn't touch the bag, so he went for the tag on Michael Young. In a call that could've gone either way, once again it went to the orange and blue. Washington came out to argue, once again to no avail.
- Potential Blown Call #3: With the very next crack of the bat, more controversy: Mitch Moreland hit a scorching grounder that Murphy picked right out of the air. His throw to second was way ahead, but Reyes appeared to come off the bag to get it. It could have gone either way, but it once again went the way of New York, and the out was awarded.
- Potential Blown Call #4: In the 6th, Paulino led off with a double and Murphy was facing a 2-2 count. A Derek Holland fastball appeared to hit the upper inside corner of the strike zone, but umpire Andy Fletcher saw it differently, and the count went full. Murph then half-swung at a pitch that sailed down the left field line for a double, scoring Paulino. Washington came out to argue yet again, but three strikes and you're out, baby: Fletcher sent him to the showers. New York picked up one more run on a Ruben Tejada RBI single, and it was 7-3, Good Guys.
- New York's last run came with no such controversy in the form of Reyes' 14th triple, a line shot to the right center gap. He came in later on Jason Bay's fielder's choice. Jose's final tally: 4-5, 1 RBI, 3 runs. That'll do.
- He even did it with his glove. Dillon Gee had allowed 2 runs in the 1st and was on the way to 2 more with the bases loaded, but Reyes' fantastic play at short stopped a grounder from going threw and resulted in out number three. Crisis averted.
- Playing for a hometown crowd, Gee settled down from first inning nerves and managed to go 6 innings, allowing 3 runs on 8 hits. Not his best stuff, but good enough to improve to 8-1 on the year.
- New York cranked out 14 hits on the day and only one Met didn't get one. Take a guess...it was Jason Bay. Blame the blue-eyed theory, blame the day of rest, blame the cleanup spot, whatever; he still went 0-5. Not good.
- Also making an appearance in Bad Stuff: Fransisco Rodriguez, who continues to struggle in non-save situations. He allowed 2 runs in the 9th to let the Rangers within shouting distance at 8-5. He got out of it, but he sure as heck had Mets fans bracing for another collapse.
Mets fans will remember this one. They'll remember it for the great defense. They'll remember it for the lucky calls. They'll remember it as the first time the Mets took a series the defending AL champs on the road. But maybe most of all, they'll remember it as just another day at the park for Jose Reyes. What more can we say about this guy? What is there to say that hasn't been said already? My dad suggested a haiku.
Jose hits the ball,
Ball flies toward the wall in right,
Reyes stands on third.
By the way, New York is back at .500 again! And we've got an extra day to savor it! They'll take the day off tomorrow and then head into Detroit to try for a winning record for the first time since 3-2. Still not done yet.