Every now and again your baseball team goes on a run. Maybe it’s a good run, where the players look loose and up in the stands or out there on your couch you’re confident that they’ll keep cruising to victory or come back and win. Maybe it’s a great run, which is all of the above but intensified so that all involved feel like they’re walking on water. Maybe it’s even a not-for-decades run that just has everybody shaking their heads, and leaves you walking around with the dazed grin of a lottery winner.
I wouldn’t know about the last variety, but ask a Dodgers fan to tell you what it feels like.
There isn’t much shame in getting swept by this Dodgers club right now — it would be like considering yourself unworthy for being hurled skyward by a tornado or falling down in an earthquake or getting incinerated by a volcano. They’re that good, that lucky, that on the right side of a crazy statistical anomaly, that whatever you want to call it.
The funny thing is for a while there tonight it looked like we were seeing the Dodgers’ luck finally run out. In the fourth, a bad call on Carl Crawford and some lousy baserunning by Adrian Gonzalez meant L.A. had four hits in the inning but didn’t score, and you could hear the mutters of disbelief all around Dodger Stadium — wait a minute, we fell out of a boat and actually got wet!
But it was not to be, despite Marlon Byrd’s three-run shot (the 100th of his career), another terrific start by Dillon Gee and a strong performance from Andrew Brown, who really ought to get a chance to play now that Eric Young Jr. once again resembles Eric Young Jr. Andre Ethier, perhaps auditioning for a trade to the Mets, slammed a pinch-hit home run off LaTroy Hawkins with two outs to go, sending the Mets to the familiar trudge of extra innings and the inevitability we all knew was lurking out there somewhere.
That it came via Yasiel Puig wasn’t really a surprise either. Puig’s erasure of Byrd at third base in the second inning was good enough to spark a “Holy mackerel!” from Vin Scully and an “Oh my goodness” from Howie Rose. I just shook my head, amazed above all else that Puig didn’t really cock his arm to throw — he gunned Byrd down on what looked like a short-arm. In the 12th, Puig hit a little bounder with some spin up the middle. Omar Quintanilla would have been better off if he hadn’t just tipped it with his glove, causing the ball to die in the outfield grass as Juan Lagares sprinted in and Daniel Murphy signaled frantically. Too late — there was no way to get Puig. A Gonzalez shot down the line followed, and it was good night Mets and good luck everybody else.
Don’t pinch yourself, Dodgers fans. Because why would you want to wake up from this?