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Monday, April 13, 2009

New park, same old Mets

Opening Night at Citi Field turned out to be a bust, but at least there were a few memorable firsts.

First strike: This time, Tom Seaver didn't bounce the ball when he delivered the ceremonial pitch to Mike Piazza.

First pitcher to fall over while on the mound: Mike Pelfrey. Unfortunately, also a metaphor for his season so far.

First Met to overshoot the base on a headfirst slide: Jose Reyes, out in the third trying to stretch a single into a double.

First animal: The cat who ran onto the field. Squawker Lisa wants to rename the park "Kitty Field" and replace "Sweet Caroline" with "Stray Cat Strut."

First Met to get booed during a game: Pedro Feliciano after he balked in what would prove to be the winning run. Oliver Perez, who already achieved this distinction during last week's exhibition against Boston, was similarly acknowledged during the introductions.

First Met not to throw his teammate under the bus when the winning run reaches base after the outfielder lets the ball go off his glove: A two-fer for Pedro Feliciano. Then again, it's hard to blame Ryan Church for letting the ball drop for a three-base error when you balk him home.

Worst Met first: The first Met run at Citi Field was scored by noted tablesetter Brian Schneider and driven home by famed RBI machine Luis Castillo.

Worst Citi Field first: The first homer was hit by Jody Gerut. Here's one area where Shea has Citi beat - the first homer at Shea was hit by Willie Stargell. But Gerut later appeared to become the first outfielder to position himself after pulling written notes from his pocket.

At least David Wright got the first Met hit and hit the first Met homer. And at least it was not Gary Sheffield.

I found the new apple to be a bit of a letdown after all the buildup. But maybe it was the straight-on camera angle. It looked a little more impressive from a later overhead shot.

But the biggest letdown so far is this Met team - 3-4 so far after playing mostly mediocre competition.

And Wednesday, the Mets try to get to .500 with Ollie Perez on the mound and Gary Sheffield attempting to play right field.

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