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Sunday, July 22, 2007

Bullpen At The Breaking Point: Mets 5, Dodgers 4 (10 Innings)

We may safely say that the Dodgers' bullpen is slightly exhausted, and that this was predictable after Thursday's rout; Grady Little telegraphed his desperation with the move of calling in off-day starter Derek Lowe, not coincidentally the last Dodger pitcher to go unscored against. Grady's love affair with Roberto Hernandez needs to come to an brief end, and from D.J. Houlton, no one should have expected him to go 1-2-3 against the top of the Mets' order. The bad news multiplies, even after the game; Diamond Leung writes that Takashi Saito will have an MRI on Monday, and he could be headed to the DL with shoulder tightness.

Bullpen aside, Eric Stults did about as well as anyone could expect or hope, tossing five scoreless frames and getting tagged for two runs, allowing a leadoff triple to Jose Reyes, and one more when Lastings Milledge, who drove in Reyes on an RBI double, crossed the plate on a David Wright single off reliever Rudy Seanez. The offense wasn't terrible, and in fact threatened unto the last, but never quite got a hit with runners in scoring position, particularly in the dramatic 10th. Such are the memories of championship years, and those that end up nearly so.

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