A lot of good came out of Tuesday night’s game in San Diego.
- all-out hustle from everyone, for the first time in a while
- being extremely alert and aware and taking advantage of little mistakes by the opponent — i.e., Valentin taking second on a ball in the dirt, Valentin and El Duque stealing on Peavy
- the reappearance of “small ball” — for example, Shawn Green bunting the runners to second and third with none out in the eighth
- taking first pitches as a rule, rather than exception
- deep counts, long at-bats, wearing out the starting pitcher
- Carlos Beltran hitting to the opposite field
- the Mets tacking on runs throughout the game, keeping the heat on and continuing to score through the ninth inning
- an overall sense of focus, urgency, and a distinct “edge” (not sure how to explain it, but the team just looked more interested in playing and winning than they’ve had)
Also of Note
- Chip Ambres finally was promoted. The guy has been destroying the ball in AAA over the last month and a half. He takes Damion Easley’s spot on the roster (Easley was placed on the bereavement list as he has a family illness) and may get a few pinch-hit appearances.
- Jose Valentin had several deep counts, a big hit, and was running around like a chicken with his head cut off. Wonder if Ruben Gotay’s batting average and extra pregame workout was the inspiration?
- Doesn’t matter much to the big club right now, but eternal enigma Corey Ragsdale — a former first-round pick — is being converted from shortstop to the pitcher’s mound (I’d post the link to Baseball America, but it’s a pay/subscription site). Ragsdale’s greatest tool has always been his arm, and he’s struggled to stay above the Mendoza Line his entire pro career.
Did you see anything else? Did I miss anything? Leave your comments, thanks.