- Faith and Fear in Flushing - https://www.faithandfearinflushing.com -

I’d Rather Not Have What He’s Having

It’s not quite “LFGM” — that was both snappier and happier — but Pete Alonso [1] added to his book of quotations once Thursday night’s game against the Cubs had mercifully ended, telling the assembled scribes that “getting swept feels like eating a shit sandwich, to be honest with you.”

I can’t say and I hope the Polar Bear can’t either, but the last three nights of baseball certainly weren’t pleasant. The Mets lost because of a brief spasm of ineptitude, lost because that ineptitude turned chronic, and then lost a game where the ineptitude was so all-consuming that neither team deserved a W, except it’s inarguable that the Mets deserved one slightly less.

Do we really want the details? I suppose that’s why we have recaps, so fine. Joey Lucchesi [2] continued the Mets’ recent maddening pattern of looking somewhere between effective and untouchable before falling apart. The relief corps was pretty good — particularly new import Sean Reid-Foley [3], who lowers his torso and stares forward to get the catcher’s sign, looking a bit like a homeowner who’s pretty sure he’s going to discover that wasps have built a nest right under the deck. On the other hand, let’s not get too excited about Reid-Foley’s debut: new export Trevor Hildenberger [4] looked pretty good when he arrived and he’s now departed, because middle relievers. The Mets got their runs in a brief flurry of solid hitting, but left a bad taste in your mouth (that thing I just did is called foreshadowing) by following said barrage with a waste of a no-out, runner-on-second situation. Oh, and there was Kevin Pillar [5] and Michael Conforto [6] collaborating on not catching a pop-up that hung in the air for approximately 15 minutes, a misplay that seemed to mesmerize Javier Baez [7] into nearly getting tagged out while lollygagging back into first. (He was safe because Alonso swipe-tagged him with his forearm and not the ball, completing a sequence best set to “Yakety Sax.”)

Aaron Loup [8] and Miguel Castro [9] somehow stranded a leadoff Cubs triple, but in hindsight that might have been because the Mets and Cubs had both decided to change the baseball rules and take turns trying not to win. (Who knows, maybe that rule will be foisted on some poor indy circuit before Rob Manfred is finally invited to find a new hobby.) Having won high marks from the judges for their ineptitude, the Cubs gave the Mets their chance in the 10th: Pillar started on second as the free runner, dramatically increasing the chances of his doing something actually useful, and moved to third on a wild pitch.

Normally, I’d take the odds on Jeff McNeil [10] at least hitting a ball to an outfielder, but McNeil can’t get out of his own way right now and swung at a pitch above the strike zone. I had more confidence in Luis Guillorme [11], who walked. So did Francisco Lindor [12]. Up came Dom Smith, who actually connected — right into a double play. With the Mets having failed, Baez was the Cubs’ free runner and soon scored on a Jason Heyward [13] single through the infield after a bunch of stuff I no longer care to recall [14].

Honestly, this was a deeply stupid baseball game, nearly as miserable as it was to watch as I’m sure it was to play. If the best baseball games are chess matches, this was watching two blindfolded children screaming and flinging checkers at each other. It’s the first game of the season that left me fuming and muttering how much I hate baseball and saying all the usual stupid things I say about now when there’s inevitably a stupid hateful game like this.

So yeah, my views are just about the same as Pete’s. This restaurant gets zero stars. Someone give me a toothbrush, a bottle of Scope, and a new day on the calendar.