What a wild game the Mets sixth win in a row turned out to be. It was a pitcher’s duel through seven, the Nationals clinging to a 2-1 lead. Then all hell broke loose.
With one out in the eighth, Jose Reyes hit a long drive to deep center field. He flew around second base as Rick Ankiel picked up the ball and fired a rocket to third. Reyes slid in head first — safe. But no! The umpire said Reyes’s hand came off the base and he was out. Reyes flipped out, slamming his helmet to the ground, his dreadlocks flying about. Chip Hale and Terry Collins did a great job keeping him away from the umpire, who must have been fearing for his life. I can’t remember the last time I saw a player go that nuts.
The thing is, Reyes was absolutely right. Replays showed his hand never came off the base. Even the homer Nationals announcers (I couldn’t get the Mets feed) admitted the umpire blew the call.
Instead of curling into a fetal position and quietly losing the game, the Mets fought back. The next batter, pinch hitter Daniel Murphy (who needs to be in the starting lineup every day) homered to tie the game at two.
Then in the bottom of the inning, Pedro Beato allowed an unearned run, courtesy of a double that Jason Bay couldn’t catch on a sliding attempt, a passed ball, and a sacrifice fly.
Once again, the old Mets would have gone quietly into the night. But they fought back again for four runs, capped off by a Murphy two-run double, and the Mets won 6-3.
I wonder if the blown call on Reyes and his reaction sparked the Mets. If so, that’s a good thing. The team has really had no emotion the past couple of seasons. If this keeps up, things could get pretty interesting in Flushing this summer.