There were seven no-hitters this past baseball season. However, one stood out more than the rest. There is one franchise who seems to have the worst luck and has become the laughing stock of the MLB. Who might I be talking about? New York’s other team, the New York Mets. This organization has constantly been ridiculed for its awful contracts and lackluster performance. However, the Mets did make one impressive trade when they traded prospects for the Cy Young winner, Johan Santana.
Santana was one of the most elite pitchers in the game. However, when he came over to New York he was constantly plagued by injuries and never returned to what he was in Minnesota. Except for one night in July when he was spectacular. It was a game that the Mets were hosting the reigning World Series Champions, the St. Louis Cardinals. It was already expected to be a big game because it was Carlos Beltran’s first game back to New York since being traded.
Santana was pitching brilliantly and the Mets were actually giving him run support. Once it got to the sixth,seventh inning, fans started noticing that Santana had yet to give up a hit. Being used to disappointment, Mets fans assumed that there was no way he was going to go all nine innings nor would manager Terry Collins allow his ace to be overworked.
Now the Mets get to the ninth inning. Still no hits have been given up, but Santana is up to 115 pitches and still has batters to face. What to do? Collins surely didn’t know, but knew he owed it to the Mets fans who have waited 8,020 games to see a pitcher go all the way. Two outs in the ninth. Matt Holiday steps into the box. Strike 1. Strike 2. Can this really happen? Can Johan Santana really accomplish something Tom Seaver, Nolan Ryan, Doc Gooden, and David Cone could not deliver to these fans? Strike 3, swinging at a change up! YES JOHAN SANTANA PITCHED THE FIRST NO-HITTER IN NEW YORK METS HISTORY!!!!! What an amazing feeling for the fans! Johan Santana, one of the most beloved Mets pitchers finally broke the curse. It was so emotional, Santana cried, Collins cried, and now I am tearing up thinking about it! It could not have happened to a better guy. What a great moment in sports!
Today was Game 7 of the NLCS to determine which team would face the Detroit Tigers in the World Series. One thing that appeared to be missing was the Cardinals ability to hit. The bats have gone silent over the past three games, while it appears that San Francisco has found their offensive stride.
Even for a team that has pulled off a miraculous comeback in big situations, an eight run deficit is hard to come back from with only two innings left. The Giants led the Cardinals 8-0 by the seventh inning. To add some insurance to their lead, Brandon Belt hit a bullet out of the park in the bottom of the eighth to make it a 9-0 lead. Everybody got in on the action of hitting with Pagan, Pence, Sandoval, Belt, Crawford, and even starting pitcher Matt Cain collecting RBIs.
In the ninth inning, when the Cardinals had their last opportunity, the baseball gods unleashed rain like no other. Most fans embraced it. There was two outs and the game was left up to Carlos Beltran once again. He has made the last out previously in 2006 with the Mets and last year with the Giants. However, he took a walk and there were two men on base for Matt Holliday. However, he popped up to Marco Scutaro to end the game.
It seems as though the Cardinal magic has vanished as San Francisco looks to face Detroit. The Cardinals who once led this series 3-1, have dropped the last three games. The Giants seemed to have gotten hot at the perfect time. They have been getting great pitching and great run support. Now the Tigers have had lots of time to rest, more importantly their pitchers are all well-rested while the Giants used their ace tonight. So it comes down to if the Giants can keep their hot streak alive or are the Tigers too tough being lead by triple crown leader Miguel Cabrera.
Maybe people in Flushing might not agree, but everyone has to give respect to center fielder Carlos Beltran for his heroics in the postseason. Once again last night, we say just why even Mets fans have to agree that Beltran is one of the best in crunch time. The Cardinals looked dead during last night’s do or die game against the Nationals after Adam Wainwright surrendered six runs in the first three innings. However, they cut the lead down to two in the ninth inning. Who started the rally? None other than Mr. Beltran himself. Beltran finished the night 3 for 3 with 2 walks.
The entire baseball world was stunned to watch the Cardinals rally with two outs in the ninth inning. Closer Drew Storen just could not shut the door as the 45,000 Washington fans fell silent for the first time all night. The Cardinals truly are a team that never gives up. There is something extremely commendable about a team that never gets nervous and plays the game until they are forced off the field. They have the heart to win a championship and show that a repeat could truly in the cards for St. Louis. Yes, this is a team that let Albert Pujols walk in the offseason by the way.
After being Chipper Jones for nineteen years, Larry Jones has finally reemerged in an extremely controversial way.
I am sure by now everyone has seen the infield fly called in the outfield. I think most people assumed that the NFL replacement refs had gotten lost and decided to ruin yet another big game. While the rule does say that it has to be a routine fall ball for the infielder and it MUST be called early, I am pretty sure that could have been seen as a routine fly ball for the outfielder and was called far too late. So how did outraged Atlanta Braves’ fans react? In a classy display of course by throwing everything they could find onto the field. I am surprised people didn’t try to throw themselves over when they ran out of garbage.
However, I do not think that it truly determined the outcome of the game. Did we forget the huge error Jones made on a routine double play ball that resulted in the Cardinals scoring three runs? Well regardless of his costly error, Jones is still one of the greatest players I have ever gotten the pleasure to witness and one of the those players that always played with respect for the game. The Braves will not be the same without their future hall of fame third baseman. One team I am sure who will not miss Chipper, is the New York Mets who Jones absolutely destroyed his entire career, but deep down I am sure they will just a little.
The St. Louis Cardinals, the team who beat the Braves, advances and will play the Washington Nationals on Sunday at 3:07pm.
NL one game Wild Card:
St. Louis Cardinals vs. Atlanta Braves
AL one game Wild Card:
Baltimore Orioles vs. Texas Rangers
The Washington National and the New York Yankees have clinched home-field advantage by having the best records in their respective leagues and will play the winners of the wild card game on Sunday October 7th.
The AL matchup begins with Detroit Tigers vs. Oakland A’s in Detroit on Saturday at 6:07pm.
The NL also begins on Saturday with the San Francisco Giants vs. Cincinnati Reds at 9:37pm in San Francisco.
Once those series are over, the ALCS and the NLCS begins on Saturday October 13th for the AL and Sunday October 14th for the NL.
Once that begins, the World Series finally starts on October 24th.
The weather is warmer. The sun is coming out longer. People are finally out of hibernation. This can only mean one thing. Baseball is back!!! America’s favorite past time is finally back on television and it is being kicked off with a great matchup. The reigning World Series Champions are in Miami to play in the brand new Miami Marlins stadium. However, both of these teams look much different from a year ago. The champs are with out a very key member of their squad. Who could that be? The one and only Albert Pujols who signed an obnoxiously large contract with the Los Angeles Angels in the offseason. That is clearly a huge blow for the Cardinals who really cannot replace all that Pujols did for that team. However, the home team looks like a whole new group of guys. The biggest change is that former New York Mets favorite, Jose Reyes, signed with the Marlins after not being given an offer by his former team. This is probably around the time that the fan’s hatred for the Wilpons was at its greatest. This huge signing forced the Marlins’ former shortstop Hanley Ramirez over to third base. Other notable signings for the Marlins include pitcher Mark Burhle, reliever Heath Bell, and of course new manager the ever unpredictable Ozzie Guillen. As I sit and watch the Marlins play for the first time together, I have to be honest, they appeared to be better without all the bells and fancy names. They are making mental errors that go back to knowing the fundamentals of the game. Hopefully, it is just a case of jitters and will not be a problem all season because they are in a tough division with some serious competition.