Mets Game 99: Win Over Marlins
Mets 7 Marlins 6
This game reminded me of playing phone tag. You know, you call someone, get their voicemail, leave a message. Then they call back, miss you, leave a message. Then you call back, get voicemail, leave a message … and so on …
Mets Game Notes
The Mets led the game four separate times and found a way to hold on to the lead that fourth time. It made for interesting, though also maddening, entertainment.
Lucky for the Mets, Chris Volstad had no interest in winning this ballgame; he did nearly everything in his power to give the Mets as many baserunners as possible. As a baseball coach, I could feel Jack McKeon’s pain — he looked like he wanted to strangle Volstad. The enigmatic righthander allowed 11 baserunners and 4 runs in five innings, and I’m still not sure how he lasted that long.
Almost unlucky for the Mets, Mike Pelfrey seemed just as disinterested in earning a victory. He hemmed, he hawed, he dawdled, he nibbled, and when he wasn’t doing those things, he was serving up meatballs.
Emilio Bonifacio terrorized Pelfrey, getting inside his head as he took daring leads off first base. If nothing else, Bonifacio has speed and a recklessness that surpassing even Jose Reyes. In case you missed it, Bonifacio scored from first base on a shallow outfield single in the third inning. That was not a typo — he scored from first on a SINGLE. And yes, it was as exciting as it sounds.
Steve Cishek pitched a not-so-effective inning of relief for the Fish, but he looks nasty. He is a legit submariner who runs his fastball at 93 MPH, occasionally touching 94-95, and mixes in a 85-MPH slider. I don’t think I’ve ever before seen a true underhander throw that hard.
The turning point in the game … well, the final turning point … came when Dan Murphy fielded a bunt in the 8th with men on second and third and none out and threw to third base to just narrowly retire the runner. It was a highly questionable decision by Murphy, and it was a bad play, but it worked out. Nineteen times out of twenty, the runner is safe and the bases are loaded with none out. It would have been a more intelligent decision had Murphy charged more aggressively and thrown immediately. But he didn’t charge that hard, and double-clutched. Please, kids, do not confuse this with the examples shown of Keith Hernandez in his heyday — Keith did it with skill, while Murphy was lucky.
Murphy also had two hits and drove in two runs. I would not argue with giving him the game ball. Though, David Wright also had two hits — both doubles — and a pair of RBI, and I might be more inclined to give him the ball for no other reason than it was nice to see him back on the field.
Another risky move that paid off: Bobby Parnell throwing a 3-2 slider to Emilio Bonifacio to end the 8th inning. It was high enough that it could’ve been called ball four, and it hung enough that it could’ve been mashed. I’m not sure I speed up Bonifacio’s bat in that situation. But again, it worked, so I guess the ends justify the means.
Next Mets Game
The Mets and Marlins do it again — weather permitting — at 7:10 PM on Saturday night. Chris Capuano goes against Clay Hensley. It’s deja vu all over again.