Mets’ Game One Starter— Maine + Bullpen

Namaththe_guarantee_1 Alright Mets’ fans- no Pedro, no El Duque, but it’s also no time to panic. When the going gets tough champions do not panic, they WIN! And that is exactly what the Mets are going to do today. Some of you might feel a bit skittish about having a rookie take the mound for Game 1, but I am here to reinstill confidence in you. I am taking a page from Joe Namath and guaranteeing a Mets’ victory this afternoon. It might mean us throwing 8 pitchers out there, but we will win! Don’t think of this game as just Derek Lowe vs John Maine, this game is as much about the Mets bullpen as any game we have played this season. If there is one clear advantage the Mets have over the Dodgers it is their bullpen. So, with no other choice, it is time to exploit the strength of our team.


Here’s my Cabbie Game 1 Pitching Plan:

John Maine (3 IP)— All
he’s got to do is get through the Dodgers’ lineup once. Give us nine
outs and the bullpen can take it from there. If Maine is hot, Willie
can let him go four or five. This is a job I feel the utmost confidence
Mr. Maine can handle.

Chad Bradford (2 IP)—
Once we hit the fourth or fifth inning, we can call on our sidearm
slinger to befuddle the Dodgers’ hitters for a couple of innings. By
the time they figure him out, he’ll be out of there.

Roberto Hernandez, Pedro Feliciano, and Royce Ring (1 IP)—
The sixth inning might be a long one, but it will be successful if
Willie is patient. Depending on the order of the lefthanded and
righthanded hitters due up, we mix and match. Hernandez is still murder
on righthanded hitters (.219 vs RH). Feliciano is murder on lefthanded
hitters (.231 vs LH). Ditto for Ring (.150 vs LH).

Guillermo Mota (1 IP)—
In the seventh we rev up the Mota and throw some serious gas, turning
the Dodgers’ lineup into La La Palooza. Mota has been dynamite since he
joined the Mets giving up only two runs in 18 innings (1.00 ERA, 0.83
WHIP, and a .159 BAA).

Aaron Heilman (1 IP)— The eigth inning is Heilman’s country.

Billy Wagner (1 IP)— In the ninth, "Enter Sandman". Wags strikes out the side and the Mets win, Mets win, hallelujah!








    my god! it happened almost exactly as you described. You will be a great manager’s Don Zimmer one day.


    Maine was solid and could have gone inning for inning, toe to toe with Lowe.

    “I wanted to stick with him through,” the Mets’ manager said, “but I just kind of had a gut feeling that it was time to go to the bullpen. … I just felt like we’re real rested. Our strength is our bullpen.” (from The Journal News)

    Cabbie prediction: correct

    So Feliciano came in and got the lefty. (Cabbie prediction: correct). Bradford got Nomar to ground out (Cabbie prediction: confuse batters: correct). Two runners stranded, and Maine’s postseason E.R.A. respectably intact.

    Then Mota came in and blew them away. It was like 2002 watching K Rod (the Angel). But having him bat was like, what the . . ?

    “I felt good about Mota,” Randolph said. “I thought the prior inning he threw the ball well. I thought if he can get me through that (seventh) or maybe he and Aaron (Heilman) can share that next inning and go from there.”

    Well. Fine. And did Willie give Mota the green light to swing on the first pitch too? At best Willie was trying to imitate the shake-and-bake (-and choke) coaching style of Mangini. But Baseball is the least forgiving of all sports to dumb risk taking. There’s a way of doing things, and pitchers don’t bat with bases loaded PERIOD.

    Heilman worked a perfect eigth (cabbie prediction: correct). Wagner struck out two (not three – cabbie prediction: incorrect) in the ninth.

    Mets win (Cabbie guarantee good).

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