Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Game #117: Dodgers 4, Mets 2

When the Mets don't get good starting pitching, they struggle to win ballgames. When they don't get good starting pitching out of Matt can fill in the rest.

Harvey struggled through every inning and got tagged for four runs as the Dodgers beat the Mets 4-2 for the second consecutive night.

The Bad Stuff:
  • Under the limelight of Hollywood, Matt Harvey chose to show his vulnerable side. While that translates well for Academy Awards, it doesn't work at all on the baseball diamond. His final line stood at six innings of four-run, eight-hit, two-walk ball, and he struck out a season-low three LA batters. Harvey got lucky even to allow just four runs; he needed double plays to get out of the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th innings.
  • Considering how much run support Harvey usually gets during his starts, it should surprise no one that the New York offense was ineffective against the underrated Hyun-jin Ryu. They hit just 1-6 with RISP and stranded six, only managing a solo home run and four more hits off Ryu in seven innings.
The Good Stuff:
  • The solo home run came off the bat of Juan Lagares, who took Ryu's fourth pitch of the game and deposited over the short wall in left for his second homer in four games.
  • John Buck's RBI single with two outs in the 9th assured the Mets of a crooked game number and a sequel to Monday night's lackluster loss.
Final Analysis:
Matt Harvey is going to struggle; no one is immortal. Even Tom Terrific had rough outings. More offense in the future will mask bad outings by our ace, but until then, he needs to be just about perfect every night or else it will show. That's a lot of pressure for a guy whose major league career is barely a year old. As long as most of the time we see the excellent Harvey we've come to know and love, I'm okay with nights like this, disappointing as they may be.

Part of this loss you can put on the Mets struggles, but part of it you just have to acknowledge as facing a buzz-saw of a team on one of the hottest hot streaks of all time. The Los Angeles Dodgers broke into new ionospheric heights with last night's W: it was their 39th in their last 47 games. The 39-8 streak, including a 22-3 clip since the All-Star Break, is not only the best in the illustrious history of the Brooklyn/LA franchise, but the best 47-game run of any National League team since the legendary 1951 New York Giants, who as everyone remembers closed out the season 37-7 and topped Brooklyn two-games-to-one in the NL playoff. This is some historic stuff, and the Mets are just a footnote in what has been a summer for the ages at Chavez Ravine.

The only way the Dodgers can top this run is by taking it to their first World Series title in 25 years. Will they be able to peak again after reaching this summit? It is known but to God, but half of all Mets fans will be able to rest easy knowing that their ancestors are dancing through the afterlife at the sight of their old team's success (and the other half, like my grandpa, are wondering what in the world has happened to the Giants).


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