Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Don't Sweat the Sweep

Losing to the Yankees hurts.  No matter how much we downplay the Subway Series as an event gone stale, the minutes, hours, and even days after a Mets loss to our cross-town rivals are never fun.  Especially when it happens three times in one weekend.

But while most sweeps of the Mets bring on a sense of impending doom, particularly ones that come at the hands of the Yankees, this one didn't feel quite so bad. 

For one, these Mets are ridiculously over-matched by the Yankees roster.  A comparative look at the lineups for each game was almost comical; the Yankees started a current or former all-star at almost every position, while the Mets put out a number of guys that all but die-hard fans need to Google.  Nothing symbolizes this mismatch more than the words "Derek Jeter vs. Omar Quintanilla".

To make matters worse, Yankee stadium is tailor-made (literally) for the home team, and just about the  exact opposite for the Mets.  The joke of a right field porch is perfect for a Yankee team that lives and dies by home runs, Russel Martin's back breaking Yankee Stadium special in game 3 being the prime example.  For a Mets squad that that often needs three consecutive singles to produce a single run, even a little-league-sized outfield is of little use.  

Yet despite these personnel and stadium discrepancies, the Mets still could have won two of the three games.  A pitch thrown in a different spot here, a routine defensive play made there, and things could have been very different this weekend.  Yes, poor defense and even worse relief pitching are less excuses than signs of a very imperfect team, but the Mets once again showed off their solid starting pitching and ability to mount comebacks.

And that bounce-back ability is another reason why this sweep was not the end of the Mets world.  The Mets have responded well to adversity several times this season, and did so again by thrashing the tough Rays tonight.  Once NL-only play resumes, against teams who's number nine hitters are most unlikely to hit two homeruns, the Mets should be back in their element. 

Things will be different next weekend at Citi Field, where Russel Martin will look more like Rey Ordonez (or Jason Bay) than Babe Ruth.  The mighty Yankees might still win that series, and will likely be ahead of the Mets come season's end, but that won't matter much.

After all, we won't have to play them again until October.  



  1. Thank you for keeping the Kool Aid strong.

    Can't wait for the R.A Dickey post....