Mets Game 127: Worth Staying Up For

Boy,  it was a lot easier to write copy for this blog when there was something to complain about! How about this: the Mets are causing me to lose sleep. I rise at 4:30 AM most days, so these late night games are killing me. Since July 31, Mets games have become “must see TV” in my household, so we all walk around a bit bleary-eyed (but happy) these mornings.

There is an aura around this team right now, a swagger in the dugout and on the field that comes through the TV screen. Down by five runs on getaway day? Let’s play. Starting pitcher is struggling? Let’s play. Wanna go extras? Let’s play. Your knucklehead, old-school coach is trying to intimidate us? Let’s play.  All in all, a 13-inning 9-5 win over a team that just a few short years ago inflicted two humiliating comebacks on the Mets, relegating them (and us)  to also-ran status on the season’s final days; the aftershocks of which are still being felt today.

Fortunately, this is not the 2007 Mets on the field these days. For openers this Mets team is actually adding quality arms, not scrambling to find them. Steven Matz is only a few days away from joining the rotation and Logan Verrett may prove to be one of those kismet (no pun intended) tales frequently occurring  during That Championship Season: lost in the Rule V draft, he is then cut by two teams before returning home to play a key role down the stretch. Sean Gilmartin and Hansel Robles may never be heard from again, but they have shored up the bullpen, which was the major culprit in the 07-08 disasters, providing an important bridge between the starters and the two late innings guys.

But it’s the offensive turnaround that has been the most startling. Lost in Daniel Murphy’s heroics (more on him later) is the fact that Yoenis Cespedes hit yet another homerun, a two-run blast in the 5th that cut the Phils’ lead to one run. I know they don’t give out awards like this, but Cespedes is the Mets’ second half MVP so far. Since his arrival all he has done is slash 303/345/596 with 8 HR and 24 RBI in just 24 games. He has transformed the Mets’ lineup and his ABs are worth staying tuned in for. Curtis Granderson has consistently delivered since the season started and Jeurys Familia was easily the first half MVP, but the arrival of Cespedes added that fear factor the Mets offense. I fervently hope they can find some way to keep him around.

Another potential offseason loss is Murphy. Even more so than David Wright, Murphy epitomizes the sojourn this team has been on since 2008, which was his rookie year. Who ever would have thought that all of those efforts to shoehorn him into the lineup would be paying off the way they are now? (Just keep him out of leftfield). His collaboration with Carlos Torres on that grounder in the 10th inning last night will live on highlight films for years. Plus, Murph is really fired up, which is rarity for any Met player ever (the team has almost always played with a kind of quiet reservation, both in good times and bad) and his exuberance is fun to watch.

So, a sweep in Philadelphia and now a home stand against Boston and these same Phils. Just in case you haven’t noticed, these are not the 2007-08 Phillies anymore. And FWIW, I don’t think the 2015 Washington Nationals are the 2007-08 Phillies either. But, we’ll be finding that out soon enough!

LGM. And, sound off below.


A Mets fan since 1971, Dan spent many summer nights of his childhood watching the Mets on WOR Channel Nine, which his Allentown, PA cable company carried. Dan was present at Game 7 of the 1986 World Series and the Todd Pratt Walkoff Game in 1999. He is also the proud owner of two Shea Stadium seats. Professionally, Dan is a Marketing Manager in the Bulk Materials Handling industry. He lives in Bethlehem PA with his wife and son, neither of whom fully get his obsession with the Mets.
  1. crozier August 28, 2015 at 1:38 pm
    The RBI has been devalued over the past 10 years. In Céspedes’ case, it’s worth noting: 23 RBI in 24 games. What it points to as much as anything is that Céspedes has had the opportunity to drive in runs – because there are actually runners ahead of him on base.

    I agree he’s the August MVP if it has to go to one guy, but hats off to the ensemble effort. I point to the Johnson/Uribe acquisitions as important in their way as Céspedes: getting Campbell and Mayberry out of the lineup immediately brought the Mets above water. Had Johnson/Uribe been with the team during the month-long period when they scored 2 or fewer runs 14 times, I bet the Mets win a few more of those games.

    In general, scoring 4 or 5 runs should be enough, but I’m not complaining about the additional offense.

    And btw, Flores’ slash line since the non-trade is pretty awesome as well.

    • Steve Hussy August 28, 2015 at 2:34 pm
      • crozier August 28, 2015 at 5:07 pm
        The Flores story does a “reaffirm my faith in humanity” thing. I was certain that everywhere he went after that night, opposing fans would greet him with “WAAAAAAA.” Instead, he got ovations in ballpark after ballpark.

        It was Mike Andrews, ’73 WS, but ten times better.

        It didn’t occur to me that someone so committed to remaining with his team would resonate on a national level, but that’s what happened. That he’s positively raking is just icing on the cake.

  2. Jim L August 28, 2015 at 1:39 pm
    Refuse to lose. And they are absolutely having fun. That said, the bullpen is still short. I can’t get completely comfortable until I see what Terry/Sandy do to remedy that.
    • crozier August 28, 2015 at 5:08 pm
      They’re going to wait until next week, then call up any number of decent arms they have in AAA. And they’ll activate Matz. The bullpen will get patched up fine. This isn’t 2007/08.
  3. DaveSchneck August 30, 2015 at 12:00 am
    Sandy still adding to the pen…Addison Reed a legit MLB backend arm if healthy. I like the controlled aggression here.
    • Steve Hussy August 30, 2015 at 10:05 am
      Great move for Reed. I’m hoping to see him pitch tonight so I can report on his style. If everyone can stay healthy, the Mets are now legit.