Braves 8, Mets 3.
I know it's March.
I know our 10-20-1 record has all the permanence and hold on memory as a sand castle surrounded by already-wet beach.
If there's a cup for the Grapefruit League championship, I know it's never displayed.
I know Jon Adkins is ticketed for New Orleans or another club. (I'm gonna go out on a limb and say he didn't enhance his trade value today.)
But cripes. Jeebus. Fuckola.
Braves 8, Mets 3 isn't going to make me happy in October or in March or if I'm playing Strat-o-Matic in January with a bunch of cards from the 1970s someone found in a shoebox at a yard sale. 10-20-1 isn't going to make me holler, “Save some of that for the regular season!” 10-20-1 and daily ass kickings up and down the east coast of Florida makes you start thinking about stuff.
What kind of stuff? This kind of stuff:
* It makes you start thinking that jeez, that bullpen sure looks patched together.
* It makes you start thinking that Moises Alou plays the outfield like a blindfolded man.
* It makes you start thinking that Jose Valentin sure had a crappy second half and Damion Easley's never had a good half and Anderson Hernandez's never had much of anything except one good catch.
* It makes you start thinking that Shawn Green looks like a backup first baseman, only he's the right fielder and part of the starting lineup.
* It makes you start thinking that Julio Franco looks like a coach, only he's the backup first baseman.
* It makes you start thinking that a team that pulled Darren Oliver out of a hat in 2006 might be pushing it expecting Chan Ho Park and Aaron Sele to grow big ears in 2007.
* It makes you start thinking that Tom Glavine and Orlando Hernandez are awfully old.
* It makes you start thinking that Mike Pelfrey is awfully young.
* It makes you start thinking that Joe Smith is a nice story this year, but Henry Owens was a nice story last year.
At 20-10-1 or 16-14-1 or even 13-17-1 you don't think about this stuff. You think about veterans who know how to prepare and youngsters who have said and done all the right things and will build on that, and from there you think about green grass and hot dogs and summer nights and then from there you think (with all the required propitiation to the baseball gods) about the possibility of fall nights and bunting and packed houses and all the marbles. But you don't think that at 10-20-1. At 10-20-1 every glass is half-empty (or two-thirds empty, in the case of this particular glass of cloudy, acidic suck), every rookie is raw and every vet is over the hill and every box score is filled with bad portents.
Even at 13-17-1, you just want it to be April and Opening Day, even if it will be the Cardinals with the banners and the rings and the red and the Mex and the guarantee that even if we win, we'll all be mildly pissed off about it.
10-20-1 is different. At 10-20-1, you don't want it to be April and finally Opening Day. You need it to be April and Opening Day.
Braves 8, Mets 3.