The nine-game bubble burst, not in gut-wrenching style but an old-fashioned whooping.
Aided by three Phillies errors in the first three innings, the Mets scored 10 times in those innings to coast to a 13-4 victory.
Only consolation for the Phillies, it only counts as one loss. Odds were against the Phillies going 31-0 this month.
The Mets’ early explosion took the 30,269 Phillies fans out of the game. Yes, there were occasional noises from New York fans. Which brings up one of Mike Schmidt’s great lines, “Why do Mets fans say, ‘Let’s go Mets’ and the Phillies fans say, ‘booooo?’”
Five hours before game time, the ballpark was rather quiet and empty, except for some activity on the field. Aaron Rowan and Shane Victorino were racing remote control, all-terrain vehicles in the outfield grass. Boys will be boys. Shortly thereafter, four Mets came out for early hitting. Three members of the ground crew were hosing down the center field fence. Pollen or dust or both.
Major League Baseball regulations state that clubhouses shall open to the media three and one-half hours prior to game time (3:35 p.m. for a 7:05 night game). As has been the case during this home stand, there were plenty of writers, broadcasters and TV crews. They all made a beeline to Ryan Madson’s locker to get his reaction about going back to the bullpen.
The first locker inside the clubhouse door on the right side was empty. The red and white nameplate said #35 Cole Hamels. In order to make it convenient for Cole and the media, the media was informed that he would be available to the masses at 6 o’clock in the media room.
Hamels walked into a big league clubhouse for the first time at 3:44 p.m. and TV cameras focused on him as he dropped his equipment bag and began to open it. “Get a haircut,” blurted Brett Myers. Other teammates followed with the same needle. After a few minutes, TV camera crews were asked to allow Cole to get dressed. Stretching on the field began at 4:20. A rookie should never be late.