The news last night that Pedro Martinez was a goner reminded me of one of my late aunt’s favorite sayings, one she used whenever we ran to her and said someone had done us wrong. “Well,” she said. “Now you know.”
Now the Mets know what they’ve suspected for weeks: The Savior who got them there will not be able to take them to the Promised Land. Martinez’ new tear in his left calf (not the previously injured right one) will keep the Mets’ ace in the dugout for the entire postseason. But take heart, Mets fans. This is not necessarily the death knell for the team’s season of promise. In fact it just may be the jolt Willie Randolph’s boys need to shake them from their recent funk and offer a rallying point for their World Series dreams. This is the truth: The Mets went 29-19 during Martinez’ two stints on the DL this season. They’re third in the NL in runs scored, and third in overall ERA (4.20).
Though his record was ordinary (9-8), Pedro no doubt led the Mets to their success this season. He set the tone early in the season with key victories and was the fire to Tom Glavine’s ice on the staff. Now Glavine, Orlando Hernandez (named the Game 1 starter yesterday, just as I, ahem, suggested), Steve Trachsel, rookie flamer John Maine and others will rely in the Mets’ bats to carry them through. Reaching the World Series will be harder than it looked this summer, but not impossible.
Win the Series? Not happenin’.
As for my Cardinals (long-time PTW readers know I grew up in Tulsa, home of the Cardinals’ then-AAA team, the Oilers), reaching the playoffs is looking less possible every day after what is shaping up to be one of baseball’s most historic collapses. On Sept 20, the Cards held an 8 1/2-game lead over the third-place Astros. This morning that lead is just a 1/2 game after the Cards lost their eighth in nine games last night, to the pitiful Brewers, and the ‘Stros won their ninth straight ion Pittsburgh. The 1964 Phillies lost a 6 1/2-game lead with 12 to play.