Mets Game 162: Win Over Brewers

Mets 3 Brewers 2

Mets narrowly avoid a final-series sweep at the hands of the Brewers, perhaps inspired by Mike Piazza, and finish with the exact same record as 2012: 74-88. This year, though, that’s good enough for third place in the NL East!

Mets Game Notes

Was it Mike Piazza Day or Eric Young, Jr. Day? Young was playing like a man on fire, particularly in the first frame, when he came as close to singlehandedly scoring a run as one can get. Though, upon closer examination, it could be argued that better execution — even average execution — by the defense should have resulted in Young being put out before crossing home plate. Still, his aggressiveness forced the mistakes. When you make dumb decisions and they work out, it’s called “being aggressive” (or, “Dan Murphying”). When you make a dumb decision and are put out, it’s called “a dumb decision.” Against the little-league defense of the Milwaukee Brewers, being aggressive was a good plan.

This game came down to an assortment of plays at the plate, umpiring calls, and fundamentals. It was ugly — a fitting way for this Mets team to finish.

Jonathon Niese deserved better, both in this game and in 2013 overall. He finished the year 8-8, and was admirable to stellar in seven of his final nine starts. Eight wins? Vic Black “earned” the victory, and he finished the year with three.

Was it fitting that Frank Francisco closed it out, to earn his first save of the year — and likely his last as a Met?

It looked like the Mets weren’t going to come back from the seemingly mountainous one-run lead the Brewers took. But then in the bottom of the 8th inning, Sean Halton and Scooter Gennett set up the circus tent, laid down three rings, and began performing. The only thing more stunning than the terrible series of events that occurred by the Milwaukee defense was the reaction by GKR, who spoke as if they’d not seen “little league” mistakes ever before. They were right to harshly criticize the Brew Crew, but really guys? You’ve NEVER seen stupid baseball on this level before? Have you been watching the same Mets games as I have for the past three years?

2013 was a long, long year for the Mets and Mets fans. I’m torn to see it come to an end. On the one hand, the agony is over, and for the next month the only baseball to watch should be really good baseball. On the other hand, there’s only a month left of baseball to watch, and then a long winter or debating whether or not Daniel Murphy is a legitimate everyday Major Leaguer.

Next Mets Game

The Mets host the Washington Nationals on March 31, 2014 to start the season. TBD will take the ball against TBD; there’s a good chance that TdA will catch for the Mets.

Mike Piazza Items of the Day

We’re going all Mike Piazza, with several items to choose from:

Mike Piazza New York Mets Iphone 4/4S Case

Mike Piazza New York Mets White Cooperstown Jersey by Majestic

MLB Majestic Mike Piazza New York Mets Cooperstown Collection Player T-Shirt – Black

Mike Piazza #31 New York Mets official MLB Knucklehead Bobble Head in original Box

Long Shot (Kindle Edition)

Long Shot (Hardcover)

Long Shot (Paperback)

There’s also an Audible version; use any of the above links to get to it.

Joe Janish began MetsToday in 2005 to provide the unique perspective of a high-level player and coach -- he earned NCAA D-1 All-American honors as a catcher and coached several players who went on to play pro ball. As a result his posts often include mechanical evaluations, scout-like analysis, and opinions that go beyond the numbers. Follow Joe's baseball tips on Twitter at @onbaseball and at the On Baseball Google Plus page.
  1. crozier September 29, 2013 at 9:28 pm
    I attended the game today, and thought the Piazza ceremony was done just right. 30 minutes, no long speeches, heartfelt testimonials, cool old timers (Harrelson, Staub, Kranepool, Al Jackson). And no ‘roids jokes (This would be mine: “Mike, it’s great to have you back…ne”). And I never get tired of watching his post-9/11 home run against Atlanta.

    I remember how charged I was when the Mets acquired him. I knew, absolutely, they would become contenders. Oh for the day when the Mets will be good enough that one more player can tip the scales like that (Delgado/Wagner had a similar impact for the ’06 team, but Beltran was that team’s Piazza).

    As to the game? Definitely one of weakest wins ever. The EYJ-fueled first inning was comical, as if he knew if he didn’t steal second and third – and home, for all intents and purposes – the Mets wouldn’t score. I have hand it to him, he was dead right. Then he hits a 18-bounce dribbler that went about 15 feet to “drive” in the lead run in the 8th. Quite a day, though not exactly Cabrera-esque. But hey, I wanted a win, and mission accomplished. And I had a Shake Shack burger, so…bonus.

    Weird, though: nothing to say about Murphy today. Was really hoping he’d give us something to talk about one more time.

    Joe, I just want to add to the others’ comments about how impressive this year was for Mets Today. I’ve really come to enjoy this community, which I find unique in the Mets blogging universe. You bring a singular voice and style to this forum, and while – obviously – I don’t always agree with you, and man, but you go on some infuriatingly cynical benders, I value this space very much. When a guy toils 162 games a year to document a third-rate (and this year, wow, third place!) team, it demonstrates serious commitment and dedication. So thank you. It’s appreciated, and I hope we do this again next year.

    • Walnutz15 September 30, 2013 at 8:19 am
      1st and only game attended this season – and it had nothing to do with the team on the field. Nice ceremony, and great to see Piazza getting his just-due. (Though, where was Seaver…..ailments keeping him from traveling, or just plain being swarmy ol’ Seaver?)

      Memo to Wilpons: this is what happens when you have an actual great during the prime of his career. Maybe you should rethink your crappy philosophy, and step into some unfamiliar territory this winter (whether via FA, or via trade…..the latter probably being the best way to get someone of true All-Star status).

      The game was typical Mets….boring. No hitting, runs scoring on sac flies and on terrible Brewer errors and misplays. During the “rally”, I don’t think a single ball went more than 60 feet into the infield.

      And to cap it off, we got to “root for” Frank Francisco to close it out. LOL

      At least Terry knew where his bread will be buttered the next 2 years, by going out to the 7-line section and kissing their posteriors prior to the game. *wink*

      Thank God it’s over. Now show me somethin’ for next year.

  2. DaveSchneck September 29, 2013 at 10:16 pm

    74-88 and done, with both a win and a protected pick. To use someone else’s words, what a long, strange trip it’s been. I sense better Met times ahead, ,in the not so distant future, but we’ll just have to wait and see.

    I’ve only been plugged into the MetsToday forum for a couple of years, but I must say that despite this dreary era of Met baseball, your blog has been therapeutic, educational, and entertaining. It is both amazing and weird to dialog in this modern forum, with those that are both strangers and brethren.

    I can’t wait for the player recaps, especially to get your take on that Daniel Murphy guy.

  3. TexasGusCC September 29, 2013 at 11:39 pm
    It’s a tireless job. Good job Joe. It’s been enjoyable.
  4. argonbunnies September 29, 2013 at 11:41 pm

    The only thing more stunning than the terrible series of events that occurred by the Milwaukee defense was the reaction by GKR, who spoke as if they’d not seen “little league” mistakes ever before. They were right to harshly criticize the Brew Crew, but really guys? You’ve NEVER seen stupid baseball on this level before? Have you been watching the same Mets games as I have for the past three years?

    This is the one thing Mets-related that I will stick up for. I love the SNY crew. So, here’s my pro-GKR interpretation of the announcing:

    These guys travel with the Mets players and see them every day. So when Murphy fails to cover a base, Cohen will mention it, but stifle his disgust:

    “Where’s Murphy? He should be covering, right, Kieth? That’s a bad play.”

    It’s an opportunity to go into a rant about how inexcusable it is, but no one’s going to do that to the guy who they’ll be seeing tomorrow and every day after. So the frustration builds up, so that when Gennett does the same thing, they have to let it out of their systems:

    “What is Gennett doing?! His job there is to cover! That’s a terrible play!”

    Same observation, just more emphasis.

    Seeing as how I don’t think it’s realistic to ask announcers to truly rip into the home team, I don’t have a problem with this. At least Coehn will rip guys for blatant laziness — that’s more than some announcers do. Most announcers I’ve heard simply don’t talk as much as the Mets’ guys, and might leave it at, “Murphy/Gennett didn’t get there, and then (what we just saw happen).”

    As to the conspiracy theories about the Wilpons telling SNY to tell GKR to pitch the party line, I doubt specific messages are handed down, but I’m sure some sort of influence is present. “Don’t ruthlessly trash our guys” might be the whole of it. Again, I don’t find this troubling. I’m quite convinced that Kieth’s love of Collins, for example, is 100% sincere. (I also find it ridiculous. But that’s Kieth — I love him for his observations much more than his opinions).

    • Seth September 30, 2013 at 2:18 am
      Gary Cohen is simply fantastic. I also totally love Howie Rose. The mets broadcasters have always been far stronger than the guys crosstown and despite being a Yankees fan, I haven’t liked anyone they’ve hired after Mel Allen other than Bill White and Frank Messer. John Sterling is simply abominable, but even he is more interesting than most guys you hear across the country (excluding of course Scully). Keith is typically quite critical which I admire. Ron has been a bit of a corporate-talker–he did go to Yale…
    • crozier September 30, 2013 at 9:31 am
      As one who follows baseball on reddit, I find the admiration for GKR is universal. It’s common for rival fans to praise them as the best broadcasting team in baseball.
  5. chris September 30, 2013 at 1:11 pm
    It would be great if somehow we could get the SNY feed in Florida. I think half my street is NY ex-pats and we get YES, so why not. For some reason there seemed to be a lot of nationally televised Mets games this year, but would love to see the games with Gary & Keith announcing

    Joe, thanks for the great season of recaps. Can’t wait for the hot stove. But first, looking forward to enjoying the playoffs.

    • crozier September 30, 2013 at 6:44 pm’s “At Bat” app is a little pricey, I suppose, but that’s the way I get SNY in the Philadelphia area.
  6. DanB September 30, 2013 at 1:27 pm
    It’s been 24 hours since the season ended and the Mets haven’t done anything to improve the roster. Who had game 162 in preseason prediction for Francisco’s first save? A million thanks to Joe and all the contributers for making the season fun.
    • jerseymet September 30, 2013 at 5:03 pm
      FF closing out the season was indeed curious. I am reminded of Ollie’s being hung out to dry by Jerry Manual on the last day 2009.
  7. murph September 30, 2013 at 10:26 pm
    Hey Joe, thanks for another great season here on MetsToday. I am sure it is not pleasant recapping more losses than wins, as you have been doing now for the 5th losing season in a row.

    Here’s to an interesting and active hot stove league, and hope for the future of this franchise.

  8. DanB October 1, 2013 at 7:03 am
    Hey Joe, how about rerunning that one post you did at the beginning of the year where we all made our 2013 predictions? I am sure some people would chuckle over my prediction that Marlon Byrd would be first outfielder cut.
  9. Joe October 9, 2013 at 1:29 pm
    I say each post in 2014, if he still is around, should have at least one dig at Daniel Murphy. Why stop at every other?

    The “more Mets game than Mets game” of the day was over in Houston, where they just didn’t want to stop playing, it being 1-1 or something to around the 15th.

    The Mets, which some suggested would lost 100 games or something, won the same amount as last year, w/o Santana or Dickey & the usual injuries and so forth, and they ended in third place. Before the season started, this was more than some expected. Now, it’s like “hey third place! wow!” (dripping, sarcasm)

    But, it’s appreciated that you managed to almost cover every single game and unlike Gary Cohen not get the big bucks for doing so.