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Nasty Boy

I’m still kvelling from Jacob deGrom [1] in the All-Star Game last night [2]. Seriously. I should be more upset that the National League did not uphold the honor of the essentially meaningless midseason exhibition (home field, schmome field; Mets in five), but p’shaw! to that. A decision for Jacob would have been swell and an MVP trophy would have been sparkling, but we have something better than any of that.

We have a legend [3]. We’ll be talking about that time Jacob deGrom blew away the American League on ten pitches for three strikeouts in the sixth inning of the 2015 All-Star Game in the runup to every All-Star Game for the next couple of generations. There may not have been a Ruth, Gehrig or Foxx [4] — or even a Parrish, Lemon or Davis [5] — among the hapless trio of Stephen Vogt [6], Jason Kipnis [7] and Jose Iglesias [8], but that’s who the junior circuit offered up as its best, and deGrom overmatched each of them.

When you’re wandering the desert from the last game before the break to the first game after the break, about the only thing that makes life worth living is when your team’s lone representative enters the only game in between. Jacob simply taking the mound would have more or less satisfied me. Instead we got way more. We got a little extra dose of franchise history to go with our recent run of high-maintenance pitchers homering once and sub-Mendoza bench players homering thrice, and we got it with the whole baseball world watching.

As Met All-Star moments go, this rivaled Lee Mazzilli [9] taking Jim Kern [10] deep and walking with the bases loaded versus Ron Guidry [11]. In 1979, I was upset Mazz got jobbed out of the MVP by Dave Parker [12]’s cannon of an arm. Thirty-six years later, I find the performance to be its own reward. Man, I must be maturing.

I’ve never called any pitcher “filthy” or “dirty,” mostly because I don’t talk like a anchor candidate SNY deemed too lame to host SportsNite, but for the first time Tuesday night, I was moved to blurt out, “THAT WAS NASTY!” to the television. I mean such a nice boy, but such nasty stuff. “LOOK! LOOK AT WHAT HE’S DOING!” I advised Stephanie, who was already pretty charmed by Jacob’s cameo in the Fox promo that featured youthful All-Stars who didn’t know what to make of old technology. Our youngster held a rotary phone and expressed total bafflement [13] with what it was for.

Yet when he got the call, he really knew how to dial it up.