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The Aftermath: Game 139

Mets writers around the net react to the unofficial end of the Mets' season. I don't have much to add, but I have a new article entitled The Abysmal Thirteen over at MetsGeek.com, recounting the Mets' storied history at Turner Field. Here is what others had to say about Braden Looper's and Willie Randolph's latest disaster...

Jeremy Heit of MetsGeek.com:

At this point the bases are loaded and finally, Willie pulls the plug on Looper at 43 pitches. So, here, with the newest Brave for Met fans to hate Jeff Francoeur up, you bring in Aaron Heilman to try to get out it. Or Juan Padilla, if you want a guy who has closed before (Hey, I'm just trying to jump into Willie's head here).

No, Willie decides he wants to bring in Shingo Takatsu. At this point, I'm sure, like me, you were all reserved to the fact that Francoeur was hitting a grand slam. Well, not quite.

Francoeur pops up foul. That's one.

Brian McCann pops up to short left to Reyes. That's two.

Hope. We were being teased with hope, a little ounce of belief left in all of us that the Mets might still hold onto their Wild Card chances. Heck, Houston was entering the 9th inning down 6-5 to the Phils with Billy Wagner stepping to the mound.

But then Ryan Langerhans, the ninth inning hero, steps to the plate again. Takatsu gets to a 3-2 count. Nowhere to put him.

And in that moment, you knew something was going to go wrong. You knew it since Looper entered the game in the ninth, that the Mets were doomed to lose this game. Hell, you knew it before the game started. The Braves were going to sweep us, end our season... finally finish us off.

But to allow Takatsu to get two outs and one strike away with the bases loaded, to tease us like that. Only the Braves would do that... take our hope and belief that there is still life, dangle it in front of us and then rip it away.

Langerhans hits a 2-run single to left field. Game over.

Craig Biggio hits a 3 run home run off Wagner. Season over.

Matt Cerrone of MetsBlog.com:
...now, i've been accused of defending willie randolph too much on this site...and the thing is, i don't defend randolph, as much as i just give him a little latitude because i am not foolish enough to think i know as much about the situations on the field as he does...i think any person can go off half-cocked with an opinion...doesn't make that opinion correct, it's just quick and un-educated, and i try not to be that person...

...however, when everyone, and i mean everyone, including me, my dad, you, the writers, mets fans, braves fans, commentators, and even my yankee-fan-fiance, all agree without doubt that bringing looper in to pitch, again, in the tenth inning, after he had already blown one lead...when we all agree...then it is a mistake, no way around it...a move such as this warrants no latitude, not even from me...

Ryan McConnell of Always Amazin':
Any realistic hopes for a Mets postseason birth ended last night, as closer extraordinaire Braden Looper one-upped Armando Benitez and blew not one, but two one-run leads, with Ryan Langerhans singling home two runs off Shingo Takatsu with two out in the 10th inning. There are terrible losses, and there are "stomach punch" losses. I didn't think it could get much worse than last week's Pedro Martinez four home run game versus the Phillies, but this one qualifies as their most crushing defeat since Brian Jordan of the same Atlanta Braves twisted a dagger in the Mets hopes back in late-September of 2001.
Andrew Hintz of Chuck 'n' Duck:
I've no desire to watch the Mets play out a string of meaningless baseball pretending that they have a chance to be contenders. To be forced into a brand of mediocre baseball -- one that does not maximize their strenghts -- with a record that they should absolutely be better than. I'm sick of watching Carlos Beltran hit third in the hopes he'll break out and deliver this team to a postseason. I'm sick of David Wright losing out on RBI opportunities while wasting away in the five spot so that he can protect a player he's better than. I'm sick of Danny Graves, Gerald Williams, Jose Offerman and Mike DiFelice taking roster spots, innings, at-bats and valuable game experience away from people that stand a chance to actually help this ballclub past this season. I'm sick of the fact that Tim Hamulack allowed eight runs in sixty-two innings in the minors this year and has pitched one-third of an inning in the big leagues since. And I'm absolutely sick of Braden Looper "closing" out games for the Mets.
Greg Prince of Fear and Faith in Flushing:
This should bother me. It doesn't. This should be terrible. It isn't.

This should feel...not like it does.

I'm at peace tonight. There is nothing more I can do, nothing more I can say, nothing more I can even think.

It's over. I knew it would be over eventually. I didn't know how it would end but if I had to guess, this is how I would've figured.

[...]

The Braves swept the Mets at Turner Field when the Mets could not afford to lose there.

My watch is set to within a nanosecond of dead-on balls accuracy.

Twenty-three games to go. I'll watch. I'll write. I'll care. But I'll no longer believe. Not this year.