This will complete my triumverate of "R.I.P. Braves" posts - the first being this one, followed by the unforgettable "Ballad of Marcus Giles." Yesterday afternoon the Mets hammered the final nails into the Braves' grave in a so-methodical-it-was-scary doubleheader sweep of the 14-time defending NL East Chumps, er, Champs. What we sensed in June, what we believed in July, and what we knew in August has now become a reality. The Braves are kaput. And children everywhere are pleased. Call it the Curse of Roger McDowell.
(1) Willie made some odd moves in game 1 that I'm going to hope are the result of the big lead and the expanded roster. Pulling Dave Williams after only 72 pitches of masterful work in the first game of a doubleheader, with Ollie Perez (who'd been brutal) going in the second game, and thus, needing to preserve the pen? Needing a lefy bat off the bench in a key spot with ducks on the pond, and turning not to your MVP candidate (who was obviously well enough to pinch hit, since he played friggin' centerfield in game 2), but to....Ricky Ledee? Baffling. But, I guess he gets a pass under the circumstances. I just don't like to give anything away against these bastards. Kill, kill, no mercy. Luckily we killed anyway.
(2) Day 3 of Puppy Watch was a resounding success. She survived several hours alone in the crate, and slept through the night until 5 a.m. without barking. (I consider that a success). Perhaps it was the Lunesta or the earplugs, but the Flitgirl and I both got decent nights' sleep. Huzzah!
(3) Good to see Shawn Green get in on the fun, especially because I have a new nickname for him: The Tribesman. Hopefully everyone gets that. (If you don't, then you're probably not part of the Tribe).
(4) I was very happy for the kid in Florida last night - I was lucky enough to see the last 3 outs live on ESPN when they cut away from the Boston game. But it got me to thinking about the 4 guys who've tossed no-no's for the Marlins: Al Leiter, A.J. Burnett, Kevin Brown and Anibal Sanchez. For those scoring at home, that's one future Met, one former Met farmhand, one Yankee hack, and one guy named "Anibal." And the Mets still have none. Fricking unbelievable.
(5) If I had told you yesterday morning that Ollie Perez would pitch a complete game shutout later that day, and that one pitcher from the NL East would throw a no-hitter that same day, you'd have sworn it would be him. And I would've been only one start off from my prediction of Ollie hurling the first Mets' no-no. Oh well. I still say he'll get it.
Finally, I read something very interesting in the Daily News today:
Williams credits improved health after a midseason minor-league trade with Cincinnati and an adjustment made by pitching coach Rick Peterson - moving him to the right side of the rubber - as reasons for his 3-0 record with the Mets.
You read that right. Rick Peterson fixed Dave Williams...in TEN MINUTES!!