Friday, April 09, 2004
Who was out on the field last night; the 2003 bumbling Mets that could not catch a ball or the new and improved 2004 Mets who Art Howe, before a single regular season game was even played, anointed as the best defensive team in baseball? While you could chalk up Wednesday nights debacle up as being a fluke and try your hardest to forget about it, last night's 10 to 8 loss was different. Thursday night's game was different because the team made mental and execution mistakes that were the hallmark of the 2003 Mets that finished last in fielding percentage in the NL. Errors were charged to Mike Cameron, Kaz Matsui and Karim Garcia. Using The Hot Corner error system, additional errors would have been charged to Kaz Matsui for not turning a routine DP (I'm thoroughly unimpressed with his arm at this point), Mike Cameron for having a fly ball bounce off his glove (if you can get a glove on it, you should catch it) and Cliff Floyd for lackadaisically catching a fly ball in left and allowing a runner to tag from first base. This team is supposed to be built around solid defense. If the defensive stars like Cameron and Matsui can't make the routine plays, combined with the always less than stellar play of Wigginton, Floyd and whatever is playing first, then we can expect many more games like last night.