Mets 3 Yankees 1
If only we could get Dr. Perez show up more often than Mr. Hyde.
Oliver Perez was masterful, tossing seven innings of three-hit ball, walking none, striking out 8, and allowing just one run. He couldn’t have been any better, and was the pitcher we saw only one other time in his last seven starts. Ollie got into a rhythm early and totally dominated the vaunted Bronx Bombers lineup.
And it was a good thing, too, because the Mets offense was unable to plate runs despite piling people on the basepaths. The Mets collected 12 hits and 3 walks, but scored only three runs. One came on a bases-loaded infield hit by Luis Castillo, another on a solo homer by Carlos Delgado, and the last on a sacrifice fly by David Wright. It wasn’t like the Yankees had great pitching, either. Darrel Rasner struggled through most of his five innings of work, and reliever David Robertson was far from impressive in his two frames.
The Mets finish the first half of their season 40-41. Interestingly, although they are one game under .500, and the first-place Phillies are five games over .500, the two teams are closer than their records would indicate — because the Mets have only two more losses than the Phillies’ 39.
Who the heck was this particular Perez today? He was pitching like a man possessed, a fearless, nasty S-O-B going right after Alex Rodriguez with 96 MPH heat on the hands. It wasn’t just the velocity, but the ferocity on his face and the confidence that was oozing from every inch of his body. I would love to see more of this psychopath against teams other than the Yankees. Can we safely surmise that Ollie is a guy who gets “up” for certain teams / special games? If he could drop everything from his mind and focus on being a madman against everyone, he’d be a 20-game winner, easy. In fact I would take a focused and intimidating Perez over Johan Santana most days of the week. He was downright scary.
Endy Chavez was 3-for-4 starting in left field. Ryan Church, in his first game back from the DL, picked up where he left off, going 2-for-4. Castillo had three hits and Jose Reyes two.
Billy Wagner made us all toss Tums down our throats en route to his 18th save of the year. Wagner allowed a leadoff single to Derek Jeter, move him to second on a wild pitch, then gave up an A-bomb to A-Rod which luckily fell just short of the left field fence and safely into the glove of Chavez. However, Wagns then settled down to retire Jorge Posada on a popup and struck out Wilson Betemit to end the game.