Record: 58-68. Change on last year: +19
"It doesn't matter how many wins you have. Whoever wins the division will be remembered for it. There's a lot of talk about futility, how it's not worth winning the division. All that garbage is bull. Win the division, and you've accomplished something. Period."
-- The Tao of Bob, #611
There was something depressing about the entire game yesterday. As soon as New York took a two-run lead in the first inning, on a double by Floyd, it was if someone opened a valve and let all the fight out of the Diamondbacks. We managed only seven base-runners all night, two of whom were erased on double-plays, and just one run scored, on a double by Green, who had two of our five hits.
Not that Webb was bad - three runs on five hits and three walks over eight innings. But he was slow out of the gate, with Floyd providing all the offense New York would need. Webb has now lost four straight to the Mets, since shutting them out in his career debut, back in April 2003.
No, it's more that our offense was totally ineffective. At least it wasn't the usual failure with RISP, albeit simply because we didn't have many RISP - Glavine kept us from reaching second base until the seventh innings. He said, "Tonight was probably the best distribution I've had of all my pitches in one game." He seems to love starting at BOB, with a career record of 8-1 and a miniscule 1.37 ERA.
In particular, according to Glavine, "There's something about that stripe from the mound to home plate that locks me in, makes me feel good about my target...I just might have them cut that stripe at Shea." So much for home-field advantage, eh? Maybe next time we face Glavine, we should instruct the groundsman to shave the strip so it points out of the strike zone?
We seemed to have an understanding of the theory required: said Melvin, "Take the ball in and make him get the ball up. That's what we talked about before the game, try to get the ball up, don't try to get too greedy off him. Stay in the middle of the diamond and take your singles." It was the execution that was the problem: 16 ground-outs, 10 when hitters tried to pull the ball, and all our hits came up the middle or the opposite way. Just not enough of them.
Thanks to andrew, Devin and icecoldmo for commenting, which is more than I managed; a combination of work and apathy striking this one down. As I wrote the above line, in another window, Random Fandom was opening, and what do I see? "My virus is apathy -- and it's catching." Thanks, Stefan... ;-) A-TISH-oo!
But ten games below .500 we may be - and don't stop me if you've heard this one before - the Dodgers and Padres both lost, leaving the NL West as adrift and rudderless as it was. No team is above 5-5 for the past ten, and both us and the Padres sit at 3-7: the Dodgers are a game behind of us, and the Giants one further back. Any of those four teams could still win it, and it's not going to take much more than .500 ball the rest of the way.
Amusing piece in the Banana today, headlined "Adjustment may aid Ortiz. Apparently, his left foot was landing about five - not four, not six! - inches too far to the right last time out. And what about the eight games before that, Russ? Pitching coach Mark Davis added. "We're trying to get him a little more on line so he's throwing the ball toward his target."
Well, that would help... I don't know about you, but I have visions of Russ Ortiz being wheeled out there on rollers, and Davis popping out there before the start of an innings to make sure he's properly calibrated. Hey, if that image brings a smile to your face, I've done my job for the day.