Guardians, Phillies, Mariners, Padres get Ws

New York Mets ace Max Scherzer

Mad Max had a day to forget, but the Mets aren’t out yet
Image: Getty Images

Every bottom seed except Tampa won on the opening day of the 2022 MLB playoffs. The Guardians, Phillies, Mariners and Padres all hold 1-0 advantages and could send their opponents fishing today with another W.

The new playoff format has that store-out smell, but it still feels good in large part because three-game playoffs make up the bulk of the regular season. A random bad day from an ace or a ninth-inning meltdown didn’t leave Mets or Cardinals fans distraught. Stop threatening to mutilate New Yorkers, and don’t cry over Albert Pujols, St. Louis yet. Today is a new day, and there surely won’t be another jerk waiting to kick your ass. (Cut to Mets fans shouting, “Have you ever watched us!?”)

New York’s 101-win season didn’t end as Max Scherzer allowed seven runs in four and two-thirds. Jacob deGrom has the opportunity to try and force a third game, and… well, fuck it.

I can’t keep this optimism. It’s impossible to shake the feeling of dread once you’ve embraced the pessimism — and I’m not even a Mets fan. Try preaching a ‘clean slate’ to the ball club that has ruled the NL East for most of the season. The team didn’t pop bottles when they clinched a playoff spot because they wanted to keep it for the division crown.

Scherzer allowed San Diego four home runs, including a two-run shot in the first, solo homers in the second and fifth, as well as a three-run dinger in the fifth. It was the fourth time in his career that he allowed four home runs in a game, which is also the most home runs he has given up in a single outing.

If you think deGrom is going to save the day, he hasn’t gone more than six innings in his last four starts and hasn’t allowed less than three runs in any of them. Why even show up? Someone gives Buck Showalter the green light to forfeit. A bunch of dummies, strangling artists, gutless, spineless, fat, smelly, goddamn whores! Alleluia! … Where is the Tylenol?

Let’s check with Canadian comedian Nathan Fielder who is definitely at least five minutes behind this appearance on the Jumbotron.

I don’t know anything about him so I’m not going to comment on the validity of his schtick. All I know is he looks like a teenager eating at a Burger King with his parents.

Can I offer a benefit though? A tiny, tiny, sliver of silver lining? If it was last year, this abysmal game would have been it. Under the previous, non-COVID format, the Mets and Padres would have gone head-to-head in a win-win game, and the giddy crowd would have been sent into a fetal position — or the nearest establishment that serves hard liquor.

“There’s Always Next Year” hasn’t happened yet, so stop looking like a cavalcade of just-dumped 16-year-olds heading for the exits. At the very least, don’t give Yankees fans the satisfaction of watching you sulk.

Here’s an Obi Toppin dunk to help Mets fans forget about the Mets loss

The Knicks played their second preseason game on Friday, and instead of delving into Jalen Brunson’s 4-12 night, I thought we’d end on a high.

If Tom Thibodeau does not play Toppin for more than 17 minutes per game this season, MSG will revolt.

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