Can a whole week of good will be undone by one loss?
If you're the Mets, yes it can.
But for me, I go back and forth on it. On the one hand, losses like this happen all the time in baseball, and they happen to teams that are much better than the current Met incarnation. I remember the Mets going on a 9-1 road trip in 2006 and then coming back to Shea and losing twice to the Baltimore Orioles, who were 30-38 and would wind up winning 70 games that season. Seemed odd, but those kind of Hangover games do happen. And if they could happen to the 97 win 2006 Mets, you could be damn sure they could happen to this current crew.
Plus, there isn't a lot of shame in losing to a good pitcher when your pitcher is pitching his ass off but getting blooped and bled all over the place for the four runs he gave up. Shaun Marcum wasn't bad on Friday … in fact he was very good. He still doesn't have a win but he was very good. They just hit 'em where they ain't. Sucks, but that's baseball. And as for Jacob Turner? Kid had a good night. And he's a legit prospect … it's not like the Mets lost to John Gast or any of the multitude of 49th round draft picks that they have lost to.
I have to admit I had a little "uh-oh" moment when Gary Cohen pointed out that the Mets celebrated hard on the airplane ride to Miami. Showed to me a sign of a team that gets too high after big wins, and conversely, too low after losses. That tag has seemed to fit the Mets at times over the last six plus seasons. But even I'm willing to have some perspective on that. (Shocking, I know.) First off, blowing off a little steam isn't the worst thing in the world. Second, the bar was set long ago on celebratory plane rides. Anything that isn't at the level of the '86 NLCS plane ride is acceptable after beating the Yankees four straight games.
But it was what Keith Hernandez said when asked by Cohen how a team can avoid these "hangover games". Keith simply replied: "You have to be a good team." It was then that I thought: "Damn. We're screwed." And once again I was right. The Mets, despite what you may have heard over the past week, aren't a very good team. Teams that aren't good lose these games. The problem, of course, is that these are the damn Marlins and nobody should be losing to the damn Marlins, who have 14 wins over the course of the season, and four of them against your New York Mets. (They also won only their fourth game of the year by more than three runs.) That's disgusting. And since Terry Collins said that the plane ride wasn't a factor because they got extra rest before coming to the park, whether he's covering for them or not that lowers the excuse meter to zero. So, "not a very good team" is the right answer.
But while a five game winning streak and a sweep of the Yankees shouldn't be overblown, neither should a loss to the horrible, putrid, sorry sack of hammers Marlins. So I'm going to behave and not call for everyone to be traded, released, fired or lowered into a shark pit … yet. Besides, we as Met fans have something to be happy about:
Cole Hamels is on pace to go 3-27.