The Miami Marlins are horrible.
Besides being a cautionary lesson to the next fanbase extorted into building a Xanadu for a sharp-elbowed gazillionaire owner (which is a fancy way of saying “an owner”), the Marlins have no hitters besides Giancarlo Stanton and Greg Dobbs, who wouldn’t count except we all know Greg Dobbs could still connect for a hit as a blind 80-year-old if it meant that hit would come at the expense of the Mets. Their relief corps features an excess of downy-cheeked youths who should still be enduring growing pains before 500-odd fans in a park with wooden bleachers. They run the bases like they’re drunk and/or asleep. And their fielders spent half the game looking askance at each other, pirouetting away from near-collisions or trying to fall down.
Unfortunately, at least for one night the Mets were horribler.
No, that’s not a word. But then it was a stretch to call what happened Friday night a ballgame, particularly the part that involved Mets.
Jeremy Hefner is excused from the critical fusillade. He was very good making his first start of the season, just as Dillon Gee was in the finale with the Padres, and like Gee that fine performance came to naught. We’ll also excuse Daniel Murphy, who blasted a three-run homer and made a couple of superb plays in the field that let the Mets creep back into the game, causing the end result to move up the Hierarchy of Suck from “Lipstick on a Pig” to “Sloppy, Aggravating and Doomed.”
The rest of the Mets, hmm. Lucas Duda just missed another Pepsi Porch homer, but he also more than just missed two catchable balls in left. Duda is trying his hardest, but it’s cruelty to put him anywhere besides first or DH — cruelty to the fans, the ERA of pitchers and most of all to Duda himself. Ruben Tejada, on the other hand, has no excuse for a night where he looked like he was playing shortstop with a meat cleaver. Greg Burke was victimized by his defense but also by himself. LaTroy Hawkins had nothing. Jordany Valdespin kept trying to get picked off first until he finally succeeded, which at least might quiet unnamed veterans sniping that he lacks perseverance. Bushelfuls of Mets reached base but nobody could drive them in.
You got an unhappy premonition of nights like this in the final innings of Matt Magnificent the other night, as porous defense gave the Padres too many cheap runs. It won’t be the last time, either: The Mets’ starters may wind up front and center this year, both for cheering us with their development and for becoming the poster children for FIP.
In the meantime, well, we’re .500 against two not very good teams. Small sample size and all — the ’11 and ’12 Mets had better starts than this, but who cares — but it was galling that the second loss was the first win for the Marlins, whose owner and front office thoroughly deserve to go 0-162. Somewhere in south Florida, Jeffrey Loria is fleecing a taxpayer by way of celebration. Should you find that way too harsh, seeing how it’s not like Jeffrey Loria is a war criminal, let me remind you that Loria’s never had the opportunity to be a war criminal. We all know he’d be great at it.