Before I even start this thread, allow me to begin with a quote my father told me once. He looked at me deep in the eyes during a 10 year old softball game that he was guest coaching while the coach took another player to the ER. He took a sip of his beer, and as the drops rolled down the hair on his lip and chin, he said "Nick. I know someone has said something motivational to you at some point in your life. Remember that now."
So, you've been warned. Take my dad's advice to heart now.
So ... I deserve this. I damn well know I deserve to blog this game. Because I decided to talk the largest amount of smack that has ever been talked to a former Soccar Hooligan :).
What can I say about this game? Nothing looks good. The lines? Umm, Pedro owns while the Manatee blows. Pedro has been nothing short of dominant in his career against AZ : 28IP, 1.29 ERA, and just over 8K's per 9IP. And we counter with Russ Ortiz.
Ahh, Russ Ortiz. Russ Ortiz, as a free agent he joined his new club last season, just like Pedro, should come in with the chance of putting up respectable numbers, right? Umm ... Sure. Why not? Russ has been pwned against the Met's, dating back to the ATL days (see, I got to use ATL again, that's a good omen). The plus side? He does have a winning percentage over .500 against them (9-6), but, he did have the advantage of those 2 pitcher friendly parks out on the East Coast before. I've been trying to dig up Ground Ball vs. Fly Ball ratio, but couldn't find one ... but, Russ has the following keys to the game to win this one:
#1 - Keep the ball tight to the batter. These Met batters have been lighting fire against us, and I just feel that keeping it tight is gonna prevent them from knocking it around the bleachers and the corners.
#2 - Keep the ball at the letters, but don't be afraid to drop it down. You keep it high on these guys, and it's gone faster then a slice of meatball pizza at Lombardo's at 2 AM. Which, Russ knows something about ...
#3 - Get Pedro to stand between you and the BBQ Cocktail weenies at the pre-game mixer. Hopefully, you can knock the wind out of him and down him in the sweet tangy BBQ sauce that those delicious tooth pick speared pork products soak in.
Ummmm ... Pork.