Saturday night's game is a microcosm of Tom Glavine's season and the Mets fortunes this year. Glavine pitched a great game going into the 7th with a 3-1 lead, thanks to David Wright's 2 home runs.
Then came Guillermo Mota.
Why does Willie Randolph keep going to this guy in tight spots? Mota did what he does best, give up hits. Josh Willingham tatooed a ball to left field for a grand slam and a 5-3 lead.
But hope teased us in the bottom of the 7th. Milledge, who continues to impress everyone but his own manager, gets on. Castro gets on. Reyes bunts for a hit and Milledge scores on an error. Reyes steals second and Castillo knocks in Castro on a fielder's choice to second. Score tied.
David Wright gets up a hits a deep fly to right that I thought was destined to fall into the crowd, but it was caught. Reyes tags and beats the home, except for one problem. The ump calls him out.
My heart was broken, but little did I know the agony that was to come. Heilman enters in the 8th and gives up 2 runs.
In the ninth with 2 outs and Reyes on first, Willie made a foolish managerial move and pinch hit Beltran for Castillo. Everyone who has ever watched a Mets game knows that Beltran is "Mr. Anti-Clutch." As soon as he came onto the on deck circle, I turned to wife and said, "It's over. Beltran's striking out." Four pitches later, I was write.
Castillo is a great guy to have up in that situation. He'll slap a base hit and then guess what? David Wright would come up as the WINNING run. I guess I can't criticize Willie too much, but after Adam Wainwright last year there's no way I'm countin on Beltran to be clutch, let alone pinch hit in a tough situation.
The Marlins are a team the Mets have to beat. Now their lead is only 2.5 games in the NL East. There's no excuse for not winning the series against the Marlins, Pirates and Nationals.