So I wanted to say a few quick words about the Marlins series.
More words? Okay.
First off, I'm not hopeful about R.A. Dickey's chances for Cy Young. Not because he doesn't deserve it after Friday's shutout, but because of this:
You know Dan Plesac from his work on MLB Network. If you're an old folk like me, you know him from his mound work with the Milwaukee Brewers and others. Point being, he's on the inside. And if he's hearing chatter about how Dickey shouldn't win the Cy Young because he's a knuckleballer, ignorant talk as it may be, then he has to be hearing it from insiders. And if he's hearing it from insiders, he's hearing it from voters. So really, if this chatter exists on the inside, what chance does Dickey have?
So I'm not going to go crazy about Dickey not winning the Cy Young as I did when he was kept off the mound in the first inning of the all-star game. If baseball lifers want to be ignorant, that's their problem. If they want to brush him aside because of his pitch or because his team is battling for third place instead of first, let 'em. Doesn't take away from the amazing season he's had, and it doesn't take away from Dickey's shutout on Friday, in which Ike Davis hit one into the part of the stadium inhabited only by Clint Eastwood's invisible friends.
On Saturday, the Mets should have been toast. Josh Johnson was dealing. He was at 105 pitches through the 8th inning, and he wasn't even working hard. You hear all the time that there are easy pitches and pitches with stress ... not a lot of those 105 pitches were stress filled. Keeping him in for the ninth inning was a no-brainer. A no-brainer.
Lucky for the Mets, Ozzie Guillen has no brain.
The only thing that would have been dumber than taking out Johnson would have been to bring in Heath Bell. But Steve Cishek turned out to be bad enough. After an ill advised bunt attempt by Ike Davis with runners on first and second, Duda singled, Torres walked, and then Justin Ruggiano showed why the Marlins wanted him on the all-star team by letting Kelly Shoppach's base hit get behind him to bring in the winning runs. But Ozzie Guillen, the ringleader of a Marlins circus that was so bad that Showtime cancelled The Franchise an episode early because they were so unwatchable, put the whole thing in motion by taking out his best pitcher.
And may I remind you that the Marlins traded actual players to get this guy.
And then, after Frangag Frantsisk had himself a 1-2-3 ninth, Sunday came and trashed the Marlins out again.
The 66 million dollar defensive replacement/pinch runner, had himself a grand slam in the first inning off Mark Buehrle after Giancarlo Stanton played a fly ball as if it were a meteor headed towards the earth. It was all the Mets needed in a 5-1 win. Jason Bay hitting grand slams creates two questions:
- Is this going to be the time of the year where Bay gets a couple of hits and the Mets use that as an excuse to be just a little bit hopeful about him as they were last season when Bay actually drove the ball in September? And ...
- The Marlins gave up a 394 foot grand slam to Jason Bay, and then couldn't so much as be bothered to hit Chris Young's 80 mph fastballs hard. Should the Marlins be contracted?
Would've been a damn shame for them if anybody was in that brand new lime green monstrosity to see it. I only wish that this sweep of the Marlins would have knocked them out of the pennant race. But demoralizing that disaster of a franchise is good enough for me. The Mets have their own issues. Plenty of them. But I'm willing to put them aside for the three days they face Miami. Nothing that's within reach this season makes me happier than to stomp them into the ground. For them ... to be swept by the Mets? Who got swept by the damn Colorado Sky Sox?