Thursday, June 02, 2005

Zambrano gets it done. Offense still comatose.

Not bad, Victor. Not bad 'tall.

Would it be nice to see the fellas put the occasional crooked number up on the Shea Stadium scoreboard? Certainly, but Brandon Webb is one of the better pitchers in the league, and a win's a win.

For his part, Victor "our"/"the other"/"the lesser" Zambrano still does not rank as one of the best pitchers in the league, or even on his team, but last night he was on top of his game. He struck out only five, and walked three, but kept the Snakes off-balance and induced a ton (13 to be exact) of ground balls. Chris Snyder mustered their only extra base hit on a bloop double to left.

The offense, as implied earlier, was about as powerful as an Adam Sandler movie. Piazza had a couple of hits, but it's becoming increasingly difficult to see nights like these as the sign of a return to Cooperstown form. He's still hitting .249/.314/.432, still not walking at anywhere near his usual clip, and of course he's still 36 years old.

Reyes had three singles, and successfully stole second each time. That's a great night, and I can't deny it's fun to watch the little guy rope the ball into the gap and haul ass to third. Still, being unable and unwilling to look past his other personal highlight reel (that of godawful can-you-even-see-the-ball? hacks), I'd diagnose my case of Jose Reyes Fever as mild at worst.

For all the scorn and ridicule that Kazuo Matsui has had to endure, it's troubling that charismatic good 'ol boy Doug Mientkiewicz seems to be getting a pass. Tom Seaver, to his credit, has been vocal in pointing out that no amount of first base defense can excuse a total absence of hitting from that position.

Too many commentators have been telling us to try to focus on the defense. [Bleep] that. YOU focus on the defense ("Hey, another putout!"). I'm going to look at Carlos Delgado's numbers and weep.

A 650 OPS from a first baseman is less a statistic than a cry for help, even if that help has to take the overgrown leprechauny form of Brian Daubauch, who has spent the season taking out his major league frustrations on minor league pitching.

In any case, Pedro gets the ball tonight, which usually bodes well, but I'd like to see the home team score a few runs just to be on the safe side.


For more on last night's game, Jaap at ABA has a good recap, which includes both the phrases "ohmic resistance" and "squishy fart."

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