Yesterday's loss says more about the Mets team than just the fact that they lost. They lost a game I expected them to win. They lost on a day that Tom Glavine was going for his 300th win. They shouldn't have lost.
When he left the game after six innings, Glavine had limited Milwaukee to just a run on two hits even though he didn't have pinpoint control: He gave up five walks and threw 95 pitches, 48 of which were balls. He showed heart.
I saw a photo of Glavine in the dugout after he was pulled. I don't know at what point the photo wasn't taken, but disappointment has bent over his body and tensed his face. This was a game he deserved to win.
What concerns me is his teammates failure to win the game for him.
In the bottom of the eighth, after James Hardy singled off Heilman, Pedro Feliciano entered the game. He hit Cecil Fielder with a pitch. Guillermo Mota entered the game to face Bill Hall. Righty against righty. Hall's hitting .272 for the season, but .292 over his last seven games. On paper it looked like a good match-up. In five previous meetings Hall had gone hitless against Mota, striking out twice. But in yesterday's meeting, Hall won. He hit a ground-rule double to left. Game tied. Glavine could no longer get the win.
Guillermo Mota, the man with the 5.29 ERA, couldn't preserve the lead.
Mota isn't the only one responsible for Glavine's failure to gain his 300th. The hitters failed too.
Against seven Brewer relievers in 6.2 innings, Mets batters got just two hits and no runs while striking out five times. Six Mets failed to get the job done when at bat with two outs and runners in scoring position: Delgado, Green, Wright (twice), Easley, Milledge (who went 0-6), and new Met, Luis Castillo, who left four men on base.
Were the hitters outpitched? Willie outmanaged? Both?
And then, in the 13th, the coup de grâce. In his third inning of work, Aaron Sele couldn't get an out. Worse, he gave up a double and then a home run to the first two batters he faced. Game over.
Season over? I'm losing confidence in the Mets ability to win the games they need to win. They lack something. Heart? Fight?
Glavine has it. But one's not enough.
Tonight's game will be an indicator of how the rest of the season will go.