Thursday, April 21, 2011

I love it when a plan comes together

It was just one win.

Changed a five to a six in the win column, and snapped a seven-game home losing streak, but it still counted as just one win.

But it felt like much more, didn't it?

I picked a good game to go to with my son, and I was hoping for the Mets to finally win if only so he could tell his Little League teammates all about it at their game on Friday. But we got more than just a victory.

This was a laugher, much-needed and well-deserved.

Despite chilly temperatures and a stiff wind blowing in from left field that one expected would turn cavernous Citi Field into something Grand Canyonesque, the Mets hit three home runs. Chris Capuano was close to brilliant, giving the Astros fits all night. The Mets played solid defense.

And, oh yeah, Jason Bay was back in the starting lineup, and not only doubled for his first hit, but touched them all on the extremely rare four-base error when Hunter Pence booted a pop-up down the right field line into the corner.

It was the kind of play we'd expect the Mets to make, but on this night the tables were turned. Was it coincidence that this happened on the night Bay returned? On the night when Terry Collins finally snapped on a botched foul-tip ruling on the second batter of the game, getting tossed as Mets fans cheered him on? On a night when the Mets looked to fashion to shake things up, wearing the black caps and undergarments with the snow whites?

Whatever it was, it all came together and the game felt like a turning point. David Wright ended his 0-for-20 with a homer to deep left. Mike Nickeas blasted his first career tater to left, and Ike Davis hit his second of the season 430 feet to dead center.

(Of course, it wouldn't be a Mets game without some bad news. Angel Pagan, who didn't get hurt in a collision with Justin Turner Overdrive, did hurt his side on a swing and is day-to-day. Can we ever have a complete lineup in place for more than one game?!)

My son and I couldn't have had a better time. We had great seats behind first base, saw a couple of foul balls come close, warmed up for an inning in the Caesar's Club, and he hit some ropes in the kids' batting cages out in the center field plaza. Throw in some Cracker Jacks, pretzels and cotton candy and he was in his glory.

As was I. A perfect night at the ballpark, in April, with the Mets.

Who'da thunk it?

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