7/20/17

Peter Hyatt Final: Mets 3 Cardinals 2 Thursday, July 20th, 2017

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Citi Field is not Shea Stadium but I am aligned with those who, the past few years, have complimented the Mets in their old school design.  

It is beautiful. 

I miss Shea and had always thought it would have been renovated, and my school boy memories would always have a home.  When Shea was torn down, it bothered me but I knew, eventually, I'd make it to Citi Field.  

98 degrees in the sun, with a heat index from the humidity even higher, Citi Field made regular public announcements reminding the surprisingly large crowd to stay hydrated.  

Some observations:

Seth Lugo looked terrific.  He had good control and his fastball hit 95.  He looked like the surprise Seth Lugo from last year. 

Curtis Granderson hit a routine infield pop up in the 105 + heat index first inning.  By the time the ball was caught, he was closer to second than first.  At 36, this man never stops giving it his all. 

Michael Conforto is our best most natural hitter.  2 solid hits and 2 walks, he continues to get on base with almost .400 OBP   Though it is more modern, as a lead off hitter, he gets does on base but here he batted third. Conforto's hustle is like Grandy's and is incessant. His enthusiasm is exciting to watch. 

On the outfield play, the centerfielder needs to be in charge, but Cespedes, this time, went full bore after the ball.  I quickly turned on the radio to hear Howie's take and he was not happy.  He said "Conforto cannot predict when Yoenis Cespedes is going to go after a ball and when he will not.  This is Cespedes' fault..."  He went on to explain that there is "no way for Conforto to predict" what Cespedes will do and "it will be 240lbs barreling into him." 

Yoenis Cespedes   

I have never seen a player walk more slowly to and from his position.  At one point, I thought the umpire was going to intervene as it actually delayed the game (the clock is ticking).  Fans got on him  at one point for this and then later for striking out.  

Here was another first for me.  After call strike three,  Rene Rivera threw over the head of TJ Rivera in the around-the-horn, but Cespedes refused to get the ball, so a bat boy had to. Fans got on him for that (we were seated field box left field)  Cespedes' body language was "I could care less" about the game.  Unlike Granderson, who, had the pop up been dropped would have been on second, Cespedes literally walks, bat in hand, towards the dug out on a pop up.  

It was interesting to listen to fans complain about Cespedes' indifference.  A home run would have turned the mild booing into cheers.  If he does not start hitting soon, he can expect to get some much rougher treatment.  He is waving at pitches out of the strike zone.  

TJ Rivera and Jose Reyes looked, again, very weak defensively.  They made routine plays close. There is a distinct lack of confidence in the infield these days, and it is past time to have called up Amed Rosario.  Main stream media continues to predict August 1 and Alderson refers to Reyes' hot streak as if, a split series, makes up for the losses piled up early.  Reyes looked, for most of the game, like he was bored and way too casual with the glove, while TJ looks physically awkward at 3rd.  

Yet in one play, Reyes made a great backhand stop and threw out the runner and got a good ovation.  More importantly, he got a "thank you" from Seth Lugo.  It further illustrates the psychological impact on a pitcher when there is good defense behind him, just as it wears down the drive of a pitcher when routine plays are blown. 

TJ is struggling and looked lost at the plate. His shoulders drooped with his infield play and this may impact his bat. 

Rene Rivera looks awful at the plate.  This is sad to watch as he hit .306 in May, but .172 in June and now .214 in July.  He continues to keep runners honest and made a perfect throw to second.  With Travis not hitting nor throwing runners out, I still think Kevin Plaweki should see some action August 1st, at the latest.  Rivera busted his butt down the line, however, and made a great grab of a pop up.  He is struggling at the plate, but never stops giving his all.  

Luca Dudas home run was a line drive shot and I get the sense that the ovation from the NY fans is also a bit of a good bye to a good guy.  

The walk off win, by both Cardinal and Met fans echoed one theme in discussion:

How was this not e-1?

The pitcher watched the hard hit grounder nicely fielded at first before he broke for the bag.  The ball was hit hard (96mph) and no runner would beat it out.  It was simply that the pitcher did not cover so the delay gave us the win.  

Reyes hustled down the line which increased the pressure on the play.  He looked like the young version of himself.  

I do think Wilmer Flores' bat needs to be in the game.  He is slumping and with far too few at bats, he is not afforded the chance to work through it.  

I get that Cabrera must play to be show cased, but some whispers suggests that with Cabrera, it is not so much show casing for a trade, as everyone knows what he brings, but that the Mets do not want him infecting others worse than he has and that he remains BFFs with Cespedes and we all know that we can't let Cespedes be upset, right?  

I enjoyed some conversations with fans over Curtis Granderson.  All around me knew of the article in  the news in which Grandy talked about being "at peace" with the possible retirement.  He apparently does not want coaching, but possible player development. 

Granderson is a class act. 

Fans are acutely aware of Amed Rosario's future arrival and was surprised how fans even knew Dom Smith's stats.  

They may be two fun players to watch...

soon.  





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