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August 15, 2007
  
Daily Mets Recap: August 15th, 2007
by: David Simons, Howard Megdal and Eric Simon on Aug 15, 2007 9:31 AM | Filed under: Articles

The Game

“Doctors tell me I have the body of a 30-year-old. I know I have the brain of a 15-year-old. If you have both, you can play baseball” – Pete Rose, age 44

The first-place Mets outlasted the last-place Pirates last night, sweating out a squeaker and surviving 5 to 4. New York scratched out runs against a tough starting pitcher, rallied late against a shaky Pittsburgh bullpen, and dodged about 50 bullets along the way. Shiver me timbers, indeed.

The game ball goes to Orlando Hernandez, even though he didn’t get the win; the Mets are determined to keep his Cy Young season as quiet as possible. Don’t look now, but El Duque is posting the best ERA of his career and is a shutout away from cracking the league’s top five. New York is 14-6 in his starts this year, but he’s only around to get the decision half the time. He’s the anti-Tim Wakefield.

It looked like Orlando was going to leave real early last night – he was shaky from the get-go and could have been knocked out of the box at any time. It took him about 90 pitches just to get out of the first inning, which started with a four-pitch walk, a double, and an RBI single before the microwave popcorn was even ready. Meltdown imminent, threat level midnight, El Duque knuckled down to strike out Jason Bay and Jose Bautista back to back. The inning ended with the Bucs up by two, or about four runs fewer than they would have gotten off Oliver Perez.

Meanwhile, Pittsburgh’s Ian Snell was putting on a clinic of his own, pounding the bottom of the zone with a darting fastball that hit 94 on the gun. He struck out three of the first four he faced, and a dispiriting shutout seemed possible. But the Mets got in touch with their inner scrappy, scraping out single runs in the third, fourth and sixth. Lastings Milledge hit a 110-foot blooper and hustled it into a double; Mike DiFelice hit a more legitimate double to bring him home. Carlos Beltran took to his position in the cleanup spot nicely, lining a fastball halfway to the Alleghany for a solo homer. And Luis Castillo bunted his way aboard, taking third on a single and scoring on a botched DP. Game tied at three after six.

Starters departed, New York won the battle of the bullpens. The Pirates trotted out three separate relievers in the eighth, none of them useful. With two aboard, Carlos Delgado fell behind Damaso Marte 0-2 before reaching on a walk; someone needs to tell Marte that the hitter only chases the 0-2 if it’s in the same hemisphere as the strike zone. Bases loaded for Moises Alou, who rips a first-pitch fastball from Shawn Chacon to drive home the two winning runs. Like trying to sneak sunshine past a rooster, buddy.

Needless to say, the Met bullpen was as reliable as ever. Billy Wagner clocked a 1-2-3 ninth, preserving the win for Jorge Sosa, his second in as many games. Sosa’s been dominant since being shifted to the pen, finding new life for the second time this year. He did get touched for a run in the eighth, prompting Willie Randolph to tempt fate and bring in Scott Schoeneweis to face pinch-hitter Josh Phelps with two out. Phelps hit a bullet to right that Milledge somehow reeled in while falling down on the track; Shawn Green would have turned it into a game-losing triple. Enjoy your new life as a pinch-hitter, Greenie.

 

The Haiku

Di-Felicitous!
Backup’s backup smacks two hits
Moises breaks the tie

 

The Boxscore

NY Mets AB R H RBI BB SO LOB AVG
Reyes, SS 5 0 0 0 0 1 3 .303
Castillo, 2B 5 1 1 0 0 1 3 .305
Wright, 3B 4 1 2 0 0 0 0 .307
Beltran, CF 4 2 2 2 0 1 1 .261
Delgado, 1B 3 0 1 0 1 2 0 .252
Alou, LF 4 0 1 2 0 1 2 .310
Milledge, RF 4 1 1 0 0 1 2 .307
DiFelice, C 4 0 2 1 0 0 2 .429
Hernandez, P 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 .171
  a-Gotay, PH 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 .348
  Sosa, P 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .208
  Schoeneweis, P 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000
  b-Anderson, PH 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 .246
  Wagner, P 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000
Totals 36 5 11 5 1 7 13  

a-Doubled for Hernandez in the 7th. b-Popped out for Schoeneweis in the 9th.

BATTING
2B: Milledge (8, Snell), DiFelice (1, Snell), Gotay (9, Snell), Beltran (22, Torres).
HR: Beltran (21, 4th inning off Snell, 0 on, 1 out).
TB: Castillo; Wright 2; Beltran 6; Delgado; Alou; Milledge 2; DiFelice 3; Gotay 2.
RBI: DiFelice (1), Beltran 2 (67), Alou 2 (25).
Runners left in scoring position, 2 out: Castillo 3; Alou.
S: Hernandez.
GIDP: DiFelice.
Team LOB: 6.

 
Pittsburgh AB R H RBI BB SO LOB AVG
McLouth, CF 2 2 1 1 2 1 0 .242
  b-Phelps, PH 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 .287
  Capps, P 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1.000
Sanchez, 2B 4 1 2 0 1 1 1 .307
LaRoche, 1B 3 0 1 1 2 1 0 .251
Bay, LF 5 0 0 0 0 2 6 .251
Bautista, RF-CF 3 0 0 0 0 3 2 .258
Castillo, 3B 4 1 2 1 0 1 3 .265
Paulino, C 4 0 1 0 0 0 5 .241
Wilson, SS 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 .266
Snell, P 3 0 0 0 0 1 0 .103
  Torres, P 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000
  Marte, P 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000
  Chacon, P 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .273
  a-Nady, PH 1 0 0 1 0 0 1 .288
  Kata, RF 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .194
Totals 33 4 7 4 5 10 19  

a-Grounded out for Chacon in the 8th. b-Flied out for McLouth in the 8th.

BATTING
2B: Sanchez (31, Hernandez), Castillo (15, Hernandez).
HR: McLouth (6, 4th inning off Hernandez, 0 on, 2 out).
TB: McLouth 4; Sanchez 3; LaRoche; Castillo 3; Paulino.
RBI: LaRoche (66), Castillo (17), McLouth (21), Nady (60).
2-out RBI: Castillo; McLouth.
Runners left in scoring position, 2 out: Paulino 4; Bay; Phelps.
S: Wilson.
Team LOB: 9.

FIELDING
DP: (Wilson-Sanchez-LaRoche).

 
NY Mets IP H R ER BB SO HR ERA
Hernandez 6.0 5 3 3 5 8 1 3.12
Sosa (W, 9-6) 1.2 2 1 1 0 1 0 4.15
Schoeneweis (H, 9) 0.1 0 0 0 0 0 0 5.06
Wagner (S, 27) 1.0 0 0 0 0 1 0 1.55
 
Pittsburgh IP H R ER BB SO HR ERA
Snell 7.0 8 3 3 0 7 1 3.87
Torres (L, 1-4) 0.0 2 2 2 0 0 0 5.53
Marte 0.0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1.47
Chacon 1.0 1 0 0 0 0 0 3.89
Capps 1.0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2.44

Torres pitched to 2 batters in the 8th.
Marte pitched to 1 batter in the 8th.

HBP: Bautista (by Hernandez).
Pitches-strikes: Hernandez 130-70, Sosa 17-13, Schoeneweis 1-1, Wagner 13-8, Snell 111-74, Torres 4-2, Marte 7-3, Chacon 10-8, Capps 6-6.
Ground outs-fly outs: Hernandez 3-7, Sosa 2-2, Schoeneweis 0-1, Wagner 0-2, Snell 9-5, Torres 0-0, Marte 0-0, Chacon 3-0, Capps 1-2.
Batters faced: Hernandez 29, Sosa 7, Schoeneweis 1, Wagner 3, Snell 29, Torres 2, Marte 1, Chacon 3, Capps 3.
Inherited runners-scored: Schoeneweis 1-0, Marte 2-0, Chacon 3-2.
Umpires: HP: Brian Gorman. 1B: Paul Nauert. 2B: Chad Fairchild. 3B: Gerry Davis.
Weather: 78 degrees, clear.
Wind: 7 mph, In from RF.
T: 3:04.
Att: 25,277.

Box score official statistics approved by Major League Baseball Office of the Commissioner

 

The Credits

Recap by David Simons
Haiku by Howard Megdal


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