I wanted a split, and I wanted the Yanks to beat Oliver Perez. I got the split. Perez didn't throw a three-hitter as I feared, it was a two-hitter. Seven innings. And he didn't walk a batter. Believe that. Eight K's too. The Mets' southpaw, fighting to remain in the rotation, was brilliant on Sunday as the Mets shut the Yankees down, 3-1. The Yanks had four hits on the afternoon.
The best moment of the game came in the fourth with Derek Jeter on second and the Mets ahead, 2-0. Perez fell behind Alex Rodriguez 3-0, and then Rodriguez destroyed the 3-1 pitch, high and foul to left field. So close... The TV cut to the blimp angle which showed lightning cracking through the New York sky--it started raining but the game wasn't delayed. Perez fired two more fastballs and Rodriguez put good swings on them but could only foul them back. Another fastball, foul tip. I kept waiting for him to go to the slider. But Perez challenged Rodriguez with another fastball, right in Rodriguez's kitchen. Rodriguez swung and missed it. It was a Junior Miss Bob Welch-Reggie scene (Rodriguez just missed all day long; in his next at-bat, he skied a pop-out two miles in the air, and in the ninth, he narrowly missed a homer against Billy Wagner).
Darrell Rasner did okay; Jose Reyes had another lapse in form, as he threw down his glove in anger after making a throwing error in the eighth inning (a ball first baseman Carlos Delgado should have caught), but the Mets got a much-needed win all the same. Delgado had a solo homer, Bill Wagner got the save.