Monday, July 16, 2012

Weekly Recap, July 9-15

The All-Star Game has come and gone, and as has my final weekend in Ireland. One of my destinations was the famous Cliffs of Moher...appropriate considering the free-fall the Mets went into in Atlanta. Here's what you missed this week in Amazinville.

Team Record: 0-3 (46-43 overall)
July 13-15, Braves Series: L, 0-3

The Bad Stuff:
  • Oh boy, where to even begin? The Mets dropped all three games at Turner Field in a series that featured a no-show from starting pitching, relief pitching, and offense, as well as one too many appearances by certified Met-killer Chipper Jones (Hall-of-Famer for sure, but I'll be so darn glad when he finally calls it a career).
  • And that wasn't even the worst of it! After tossing his best game of the season last Saturday, Dillon Gee was bitten by the Injury Bug in the worst way. A blood clot was discovered in his right shoulder, and one serious surgery later he's done for the year. Such a shame because Gee was just starting to find himself. But these blood clots are dangerous (my high school's starting quarterback got one his junior year and needed surgery to save his career), and thank God they detected it in time. Get well soon, Dillon.
    • Now the focus has shifted as to who's going to fill Gee's spot in the rotation, more specifically whether Matt Harvey is ready to become a big-league pitcher. Everyone's got their opinions and most of them have been expressed. I myself fall on the side of looking for outside help. If Matt Harvey is supposed to be the anchor of the rotation for the next decade, he needs time to fully develop. If it's as soon as next season, great, but no use mortgaging his future for a short-term fix. It goes against the team's new philosophy.
  • And if it weren't bad enough that another starter is done for 2012, this breaks earlier today: Frank Francisco is going to be out for longer than expected. With the closer's role in question for even longer now, Sandy Alderson really has no choice but to make a trade. If New York is going to keep their surprising start going through September, that bullpen needs major reinforcements, more than just a little Dutch boy with his finger in the dyke.
The Good Stuff:
  • Um...I didn't get to see most of it because I was in Howth and Galway? Wasn't good for the team, but it was alright for me. If you have anything more positive, please, throw me a line.
Final Analysis:
Second-half collapses have been a trademark of the Mets since 2007, and this opening series with the Braves isn't a good sign. Sure, it's just three games. They could just as easily turn it around against Washington and then we'll start talking about playoff contention again. But the foundations of this 2012 team are crumbling away before our very eyes thanks to termites of injury and the axes of bats swung against our bullpen. It may be just a matter of time until the whole thing comes crashing down, ready to be rebuilt with optimism for 2013.


Irish Pics of the Week:

Friday I got out to Howth, a seaside town a half hour's train ride out of Dublin. They like sailing there, clearly.

Not too much fanfare, but some incredible sea food.

Saturday I was in Galway, Ireland's "Gateway to the West," so to speak.

Found this down near the Spanish Arch in Galway. Hey, if baseball doesn't work out for him, he's got the restaurant business to fall back on, right?

Relaxing afternoon by the river near the Spanish Arch

The town about to go crazy for a Saturday night. Galway's a college town, so the music scene there is incredible. One of my favorite places in all of Ireland.

Tour through the countryside on Sunday. This is the Burren region of County Clare.

The famous Cliffs of Moher, where films like The Princess Bride and Harry Potter 6 have been filmed. A true wonder of the world.
That's it for my week. I'll be back home in Indiana late on Saturday, and sometime between then and next Monday night's game I'll put up one final weekly recap. By this time next week, I'll be back to posting nightly recaps right here on Midwestern Met. Ireland's great and has some amazing sports, I tell you, but nothing beats the Great American Pastime. Looking forward to coming back to it.


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