“I take positives out of negatives all the time,” David Wright once said. I’ll try to channel that sentiment here, because if we’re honest, there’s not a whole lot that the Mets did wrong today, and there’s even less that the Braves did right.
The Braves scored three runs, all wholly undeserved in true Atlantean spirit. The runs came on a home run from Mallex Smith, which came on one of the least powerful swings I can remember seeing, an A.J. Pierzinski double, which frankly shouldn’t count anymore given how much of an absolute turd A.J. Pierzinski is, and a wild pitch, that somehow snuck under Plawecki’s glove despite the fact that the glove was on the ground, which allowed Pierzinski to score from third, after he’d gone to third on a sacrifice fly, which, again, will almost certainly not happen again this millennium.
Fuck the Braves, honestly. They deserve nothing; tonight, they got everything. They deserve 19 losses in 19 tries against us this year; it seems we’ll have to settle for 18 out of 19.
Because losing a series to the Braves? That’s just not something we’re going to do.
Everything was conspiring, today, to turn the game in the Braves’ favor. You could tell from the outset, with Grandy lining out to Freeman, the captain lining out to Smith, Conforto walking, and Cespedes making an out. It just wasn’t going our way.
If we’re honest, Harvey didn’t even have that bad a game. No, he didn’t look good, but he also allowed his runs in the most undeserved fashion that I can possibly imagine. His velocity was down, but until he got tired, he was fine. In fact, he was sick, according to rumors before the game — he was hitting 95 on the gun in the third and fourth innings. Being the optimist that I am, I’ll go ahead and say that the fifth is when the sickness kicked in.
Harvey, after all, had been improving prior to this start, and we’ve seen, in the past, that sickness has diminished his capabilities. Is it any wonder, given the luck he’s had over his career, that his sickness just happened to coincide with his period of improvement? He’ll be back and he’ll be better when he takes the mound in five days; you can take that to the bank.
But really, the forces conspiring to give the game to the Braves were hard to fathom. Gary Cohen mentioned, at one point, that Matt Wisler, who was one-hitting the Mets despite allowing line drives that, well, whistled past his head every other batter, had worked over the offseason on his changeup. He’d been instructed by Tom Glav!ne.
Seriously, Tom Fucking Glav!ne. As if the Braves needed another reminder of all the luck they’d once had.
Wisler’s performance was referred to as “spectacular” or “brilliant” or some variant thereof by the SNY booth roughly once a batter, and frankly, they should have known better. This wasn’t a stunning display of pitching any more than Ruben Tejada’s improbable inside-the-park home run last year was a stunning demonstration of power. Wisler had four — count ‘em, four — strikeouts. He barely threw more strikes than balls. He gave up about twelve line drives that should EASILY have gone for hits. Our BABIP, today, was low enough to shock: namely, it was one over however many balls we put in play. Our line drive percentage, meanwhile, not to mention our hard-hit rate, was off the charts.
So how do you take a positive from a negative here? It’s not hard; we’ve got the Braves again tomorrow, and 13 more times after that. Today, we earned about 13 wins worth of luck against the Braves going forward. Combine that with the fact that the Braves have one of the worst teams of all time, and you’ve got a recipe for continued success against the Braves going forward, especially when we face Matt Wisler once again and serve him up a reminder that line drives, as a matter of course, don’t usually find opposing mitts.
That’s another great thing about this team: it’s hard to get down. We’ve got Matz tomorrow; he’s great. Then we’ve got deGrom; he’s damn good as well. Then Thor; we all know he’s mighty fine.
They’re the Braves. They suck. Let’s go win the series tomorrow, when luck turns back our way. ‘Nuff said.