Today's game seemed like an instant replay of yesterday's game. Once again, the Mets had a few chances to score, but could not take advantage of them. Once again, their starting pitcher gave a nice effort that was good enough to win. And once again, the bullpen allowed the Cubs to mount an insurmountable lead.
The difference, of course, is that yesterday the Mets were coming off an emotional series with their chief rivals. They had arrived in Chicago after 3:00 in the morning. They were facing one of the top 5 pitchers in the league in Carlos Zambrano.
Today, they were facing a struggling starter in Ted Lilly. Carlos Delgado's vapor lock in not covering first base could not be blamed on lack of sleep. Jorge Sosa allowing another big blast late in the game cannot be blamed on an emotional letdown.
The problem the Mets face is that many fans are still angry about last year's collapse. Any little lull in their play is met with concern and doubts. They need to build some collateral with the fans again. The 5 game winning streak that just ended 3 games ago seems like the distant past. Like a betrayed lover, it will take a while to rebuild trust.
Lucky the Mets get the Nationals next. So far, this year they have been the tonic for all that ails.
WHAT DROVE US BANANAS
A continued inability to get the big hit. The Mets had so many chances to get back in this game.
Carlos Delgado's lack of focus. After last year's "We're so good we get bored" comment, Delgado can't afford to get caught being lazy or he risks the fan's wrath.
Another fat pitch from Jorge Sosa. Maybe he is the guy who goes when Matt Wise is ready.