Meet the Mets
Tuesday evening's game had it all: poor defense, bad baserunning, untimely hitting, rotten luck with line drives and hard groundballs right at Cubs' defenders, terrible defensive players making multiple miraculous catches (ahem Alfonso Soriano) and of course, bad umpiring and a player ejection. The Mets fell to the Cubs 5-3 in frustratingly painful fashion but I'm going to spend this section of Applesauce talking you off the ledge. Dillon Gee was mediocre, as the Cubs snapped his streak of seven quality starts. Ike Davis got tossed in the eighth after an admittedly poor call by the first base umpire. Unfortunately, Ike yelled at the ump and touched him with his glove. Hopefully MLB doesn't give him an unpaid day off for that move. This was the kind of game where after it ends, you want to hide under your pillow and hope that it was all a bad dream. Too bad for you, the last few days were 100% real life. They really did lose two games apiece to the Yankees and Cubs and they really did get outplayed by the team with the worst record in the majors. That's the bad news. But here's the good news: this isn't the end of the world, as much as it may seem like it is. The Mets will win games again, a few players will get hot or they'll get an outstanding pitching performance and maybe they'll start up a new winning streak. When all is said and done, they're just 4.5 games out of first place in the East. Is this series frustrating? No doubt. But let's not write the 2012 Mets' eulogy just yet. They've been a lot of fun and I'm sure they've got some more fight in them.
Jon Niese goes to the hill in today's matinee as the Mets look to salvage the final game of their series in Chicago. It'll be Jeff Samardzija on the hill for the Cubs. First pitch is at 2:20 PM.
Ken Davidoff in the Post reports that the Mets are looking outside the organization for bullpen help and he tosses out names like Brett Myers, Huston Street and Grant Balfour, among others. Mythical assistant GM John Ricco also spoke of "lightning in a bottle" type pickups, specifically mentioning the Guillermo Mota acquisition from 2006. That name fills my body with rage. Meanwhile, Bobby Parnell has made great strides this year and is getting his shot as closer with Frank Francisco on the DL.
Bench: meet Daniel Murphy. Daniel Murphy: meet the bench. At least against left handed pitchers, until Murph gets his bat going again.
David Wright is still in the lead at 3rd base in the NL All Star team voting. The polls close on Thursday at 11:59 PM, so if you haven't voted for Wright yet, WHAT ARE YOU DOING? GET ON IT NOW!
Johan Santana is on pace for over 30 starts this season. If I told you back in spring training that he'd be on this pace in June, you'd probably say "where the hell did you get a time machine from and can I borrow it?". And I'd say "no, I don't even know you!". #Selfish
R.A. Dickey is hoping that the Jerry Sandusky trial will open people's eyes regarding sexual abuse. Jeff Sullivan also looks at why Dickey is just so darn rootable! Spoiler: the Dickeyface is one reason.
Jenrry Mejia was pushed to the bullpen almost two weeks ago but small sample size warnings and all, the righty's time in the pen at AAA Buffalo has been nothing short of a disaster and the Mets' brass is going to convene to talk about his future role.
Top prospect Brandon Nimmo has gone from the wide open skies of Wyoming to the crowded borough of Brooklyn in the span of a year. Quite a culture shock, to be sure.
Around the NL East
The Mets lost some ground in the division tonight: the Nationals whipped the Rockies 12-5 behind Gio Gonzalez and 21 hits from the offense. The Braves piled up 17 hits of their own as they crushed the Diamondbacks 8-1. Carlos Ruiz has been incredible for the Phillies and he played a big role in their 5-4 victory over the Pirates. The only other team to lose was the Marlins, who continue to tumble in the standings. They fell 5-2 to the Cardinals, thanks to a 5-run first inning perpetrated by Jose Reyes and Carlos Zambrano errors. Just for kicks, Ozzie Guillen got tossed late in this one. Surprisingly, it was his first ejection of the year.
Around the Majors
Zack Greinke is awesome at pitching. The 2012 Brewers are not all that awesome at baseball. Greinke is a free agent at season's end and it looks like the Brew Crew may shop him around if they can't re-sign him.
Veteran shortstop Omar Vizquel says that he's planning to retire after this season and is hoping to become a coach or manager in the future.
Former Phillies outfielder Lenny Dykstra has entered a plea deal with prosecutors. Dykstra declared bankruptcy and then looted his $18 million mansion.
President Obama spoke in Boston and at the end of his speech, he thanked the crowd for Kevin Youkilis, which elicited plenty of boos. Oh yeah...NO POLITICS!