The National League has now increased its decade long All-Star Game winless streak, ensuring the Mets be required to win the World Series in 6 games if they decide it appealing to claim it in front of the home fans. So who's to blame for taking away our chance at doing so in even more dramatic fashion in a game 7?
First, before placing blame elsewhere let's analyze ourselves. Mets accounted for 5 of the NL's 9 hits and half of its runs, so clearly it is not the fault of the Mets hitters. What about our pitching however? Though Wagner didn't get the loss, he did give up runs # 4 and 5 which were decisive in the final score. We'll average out the positive factor of Mets hitters and the negative performance of Mets pitching and call it a wash.
Could it be Chris Young's fault? After all he was the losing pitcher of record. And he did go to Princeton, which is only the 2nd best school off of Route 1 in New Jersey (Rutgers!). The Padres, via Young, might make for a good scapegoat for the NL loss, but Trevor Hoffman NOT blowing it supremely this year and Jake Peavy not disgracing the starting spot barely gets them out of the hole.
How about the Cardinals? LaRussa was the manager after all, and the only NL player not to get in the game was Casey At The Bat Albert Pujols. Uh, career worst slump or not, wouldn't the bottom of the 9th with two outs and the bases loaded make for a fine time to give Albie a couple cuts? But alas, rather than blame someone who didn't play, let's blame someone who did, and because we don't like them in general...
THE PHILLIES. Chase Utley and Aaron "Not Even Close To As Tough As Lenny Dykstra's Manicurist" Rowand accounted for zero. Except for one shutout inning pitched, the Phillies just took up at bats and space. And Rowand, up in the stereotypical situation kids with whiffle ball bats dream about - 2 outs bottom of the 9th bases loaded down by 1 with a packed stadium on its feet around you - blew it. The worst team in the history of sports with their all-time loss count at 9,999 for tonight couldn't keep its crapulence to itself.