Meet the Mets
Things were looking up for Chris Young and the Mets heading into the seventh inning last night. His team had a 3-0 lead and the Yankees couldn't figure him out. Kirk Nieuwenhuis (Newenhouse or Newenweiss, according to Fox's Tim McCarver) hit a solo home run and the pitcher himself even knocked an RBI single. But then, Young started off that seventh inning with a leadoff walk to Mark Teixeira. Those pesky leadoff walks always seem to be killers, don't they? Nick Swisher then hit a popup to shallow right field that Lucas Duda took a misstep on, allowing it to drop in and roll past him for a double. A pitch later, Raul Ibanez deposited Young's offering into section 103 of the right field reserved seating down the line, making that three run lead disappear. Minutes later, Jon Rauch came on to relieve Young and with one out, Eric Chavez hit one the opposite way down the left field line and over the wall. It was a good pitch by Rauch, just a better swing by Chavez. In what seemed like an instant, the lead was gone, the tie was gone and the potential for a sweep was gone not too long after. The Mets fell 4-3. No Sweep For You!
Frank Francisco was unavailable last night due to a stiff oblique and the Mets are unsure how much time the closer will miss.
Ike Davis was scratched last night due to a bout of food poisoning. No word on whether that came from eating some bad chicken.
Concussed outfielder Jason Bay was in the ballpark yesterday and it looks like his symptoms have subsided eight days after crashing into the left field wall. Good for him, though the next test will be how he reacts to physical activity.
The chicken that Tim Byrdak bought prior to Friday's game was given a name--Little Jerry Seinfeld. Byrdak is in the process of finding a good home for the chicken. In the meantime, it spent Saturday at Citi Field eating oatmeal, berries and bread. No cockfighting, though.
Around the NL East
Jonathan Papelbon blew the save in the 9th but Jim Thome hit a walk-off homer, as the Phillies defeated the Rays 7-6 to move out of the NL East basement. The Marlins bullpen failed them once again, as they allowed 6 runs over the last two innings and the Fish fell to the Blue Jays 7-1 and into last place. The Nationals defeated the Orioles 3-1, moving them back to 3.5 games ahead of the Mets. And finally, the Braves lost 8-4 to the Red Sox as Randall Delgado was knocked around.
Around the Majors
The Phillies are expected to activate Chase Utley from the disabled list on Wednesday. Even an aging, injury prone Utley is a gigantic upgrade over what Freddy Galvis and others have done at second for the Phillies this year.
There's speculation that the Cubs could call up top prospect Anthony Rizzo soon, potentially for Tuesday's game at Wrigley against the Mets. Rizzo has torched AAA for the second year in a row, with a .355/.416/.722 line with 23 home runs.
Will Middlebrooks has been outstanding since his callup from the minors and the third baseman is setting RBI records in the process.
Because of Middlebrooks' success, the Red Sox are still closing in on a Kevin Youkilis trade. The most recent buzz is that the Indians and Dodgers are moving towards the periphery and the favorites to land the Greek God of Walks could be the White Sox and the Pirates.