Sunday, September 9, 2007

You Sweep, We Sweep

I've been traveling again, this time it's back to Los Angeles for a wedding and other bits of business. I have some thoughts about traveling, especially about driving and drivers, but will leave those for when I return to wine country.

Right now, I want to talk about baseball. I know I practically wrote off my Mets last week. Despite their recent turn-around, I still wonder if they have what it takes to make a serious World Series run. Still, I'm feeling pretty good right now.

Last we spoke, the Mets had lost four straight to the Phillies, the NL East's second-place team. The Mets win two of those four and the race is all but over but instead, they leave Philly beaten and embarrassed and only two games back. Worse, they were about to face the Braves, their nemesis. The same Braves who had won every series from the Mets so far this year.

Well, the ship seems to have been righted. Pedro's back and Endy's back and so, it seems, are the Mets who went into Atlanta and swept those bad boys and did it convincingly. And after taking the first two against the mediocre Reds in Cinci, put together their first five-game winning streak of the season. Whew. If that weren't enough, they came back to New York and swept the lowly Astros.

Say what you will about all three clubs, but during this streak of winning eight-of-nine games, the Mets beat John Smoltz, Tim Hudson, Aaron Harang and Roy Oswalt, not a push-over in that bunch, no sir. You tell me if it's a coincidence that Pedro Martinez returned and won both of his starts, his first two victories since last season.

Ah, but there is no rest for the weary. Six games ahead against those same Phillies and Braves. The Mets can bury them with a strong showing, putting their focus on the postseason instead of a down-to-the-wire race.

We're about to see really what Mets team is for real this season and whether the newfound confidence is an illusion or the start of something big.

Stay tuned ...

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