Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Game #49: Mets 2, Yankees 1

Who would have guessed that whole "Mariano Rivera throws out the first pitch" thing turned out to be a scouting strategy?

The Mets got three hits off the Sandman in his final appearance in Flushing, as Lucas Duda's walk-off single led his team to another 2-1, come-from-behind victory over the Yankees.

The Good Stuff:
  • Down 1-0 in the 9th, things looked bleak for the NL New Yorkers as they faced the greatest closer of all-time, who at age 43 still shows no sign of slowing down. But just for one night, Mariano Rivera looked like a man on the precipice of retirement, as he blew a save for the first time all season.
    • Daniel Murphy led off with the Mets' only extra-base hit of the night, a double down the left field line. That brought up David Wright, who lined a shot just out of reach of the shortstop (and just inches behind the baserunning Murphy). Murph raced around and beat the throw from centerfielder Brett Gardner (who robbed him of another long hit tonight - a second last laugh), and Wright went to second when the throw ricocheted off Murphy and to the backstop. Up came Lucas Duda, who took a jamming 1-1 cutter and looped it into right field to score Wright and send the paid Citi Field crowd of 31,877 into a frenzy. It was the Big Dude's first walk-off hit since he did it off Heath Bell in August 2011, and it earned him not one but TWO whipped cream pies in the face (Ruben Tejada joined Justin Turner for the double take).
  • "Attention, patrons: tonight, the part of jilted Mets ace will be played by Matt Harvey, who will allow just one run on six hits in eight sparkling innings, walking none and striking out 10 on 114 pitches. Unfortunately for the young Mr. Harvey, he will be stacked with yet another no-decision. Better than a loss, though. Carry on."
  • Murphy, Wright, and Duda each had two hits, combining for six of the team's seven on the night.
  • Scott Rice tossed a scoreless 9th for his third W of the season.
The Bad Stuff:
  • If hitters #2-4 picked up six of seven hits, it means that hitters #1 and #5-9 combined to produce only one. That was Rick Ankiel, by the way.
  • Ike Davis went 0-3 with two more strikeouts, restarting talk of an extended weekend in Las Vegas. At least he'll get to see Bradley Cooper.
  • Ruben Tejada was picked off second base to end the 6th when umpire Reid Brignac changed his call mid-motion. Terry Collins went out to argue and was promptly rejected when he did his best "Lou Pinella bobblehead" impression.
Final Analysis:
Some of the finest Mets wins come at the expense of the New York Yankees, and the finest of the fine are when our scrappy bunch is able to chip off a bit of gold dust from the golden closer. You already know this is going to be one of our Top Ten Wins of the Year. That was fun. That was a fun game.

And this is turning out to be a very fun Subway Series! Tomorrow the Mets and their fans hop on the 4-Train and take this orange-and-blue-a-thon to the House That Sits Next To Where The House That Ruth Built Is Now A Parking Lot. Doesn't quite roll off the tongue.


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