David Wright, while not in any way an objectionable name, is one of those names that makes people want to do dumb stuff to it. Like start ad campaigns that say “The Wright Stuff.” And print headlines that say, “He’s Got the Wright Stuff.” And flash messages on the scoreboard that say, “The Wright Stuff.” I think you get the point. Not his fault, but exceptionally stupid and cloying, nonetheless. So where someone less original than me might say of last night’s performance that D. Dubs (that’s what I call him) had “the Wright stuff”—and wrightfully so—I’m just going to say that he did good. Wright about when he was due.
There can be no doubt that D. Dubs has been struggling lately. So much so that Jerry Manuel considered giving him yesterday’s game off. In addition to the fatal error and the botched base running, Dubs had been one for nineteen in the games prior to Wednesday’s. Just as we were starting to doubt him, to worry that the bags beneath those baby browns were beginning to sully his boyish good looks, he hit a game-winning two-run dinger last night. Not to mention the fact that he is batting .500 his last ten at-bats. So I think it’s safe to cautiously prediction that he is on the verge of turning the beat around.
And what a relief. Because Dubs is the Met we love to love. Show me a Mets fan—man, woman or child—who doesn’t have a crush on The Dubs, and I’ll show you a person who has actually heard of Giuseppe Franco. Hell, when Cliff Floyd was playing for the Mets, even he seemed to have a crush on The Dubs, and that guy’s no pushover. And why not? Dubs is cute, he loves his momma, and he walks the fine line between not-so-smart and charming that only a Southerner can. Not to mention the fact that, on the field, when he’s not in a slump, the guy's got, well, he’s got the goods. (Please. You didn’t really think I’d go there, did you?)
So why can’t I have a crush on Dubskis? Of course, leaving aside the obvious reason that I don’t like to follow the flock because I’ve got an edge. I can’t have a crush on the Dubs because I can’t shake the image of him all dressed up in a straw hat and tattered overalls in the manner of Tom Sawyer. Why he’s dressed like this, I can’t be quite sure. But I sort of think it has something to do with community theater. Or maybe The Ice Capades. I’m actually leaning more towards community theater because there’s some kind of crazy dance involved where he grabs his overall straps by the thumb and clicks his heels together in the air. He’s really good at it, by the way. In my mind. Like just as good as he is at baseball. And this is why I can’t have a crush on D. Dubs. Because when I picture him in my mind, this is the image I conjure. Him on a fake raft with a cheesed out backdrop singing about how freeing it can be to float on down the river. OK. So I guess it must be Huck Finn and not Tom Sawyer. But you get the point. It’s weird. And, well, quite frankly, it’s Wrong.
On a less creepy note, the Moose collected his fifteenth victory last night after pitching seven lights out innings. Lot of double plays, but he pitched for a lot of ground balls. It may be a long shot—like Olympic record breaking long—but I’d like to see Moose get the CY. Lee’s still the obvious choice, but Moose is tightening the belt on that ERA like nobody’s business.
Let me digress for a moment. In 2005, when Bubba Crosby hit a walk off home run to bring the Yanks within a half a game of first in the AL East, A-Rod had this to say about it: “The last thing you're thinking is home run. Nothing against Bubba, but you're hoping for a walk, hit by pitch, base hit, bunt single—then he hits the ball like Darryl Strawberry." A-Rod. That guy’s all class. I know it would have been too much to expect the same kind of response we got out of Joe Torre, who said, “I was so elated, not only for the team, but for this kid who we've shuttled back and forth to Columbus I don't know how many times over the last two years…I have a lot of confidence in him.” But I guess for Frost Tip even something like, “The kid did good,” was just too much to muster.
Well, nothing against A-Rod, but when he comes up to bat these days, you’re hoping for a walk, hit by pitch, base hit, bunt single, strike out, fielder’s choice, pop fly, pinch hitter, rain out, whatever—you’re just praying he doesn’t ground into a double play. Oh, well. He did make that pretty amazing diving catch in the fifth, which almost compensates for the fact that he went 0-14 in the series. Um, no, actually, nothing against A-Rod, but it really doesn't.
Here’s the problem with sitting in birthday cake. With being a comedic genius in general. It’s inevitable that some Einstein is always going to wants to one-up you but won’t get the nuance and thought that goes into your craft. So, there’s only so long a guy like Lyle can go running around sitting in birthday cake before someone decides it’s time to out-prank the prankster. Turns out that someone ended up being teammate Ron Swoboda, who somehow got the idea that it would be hilariously clever to take Sparky’s birthday cake one year and have a Renteria on it. That’s actually not funny. It’s disgusting. The only time it might make sense and actually be hysterical is if the person who is having the birthday is turning eight. There’s a sort of brilliance to going number eight on a birthday cake bearing a candle shaped like the same number. The only problem there is that eight-year-olds tend to have a pretty weak sense of humor. A lot of them wouldn't get it. Some might even cry. So, the only other occasion I can think of that might be appropriate to give this one a try would would be Coco Crisp’s birthday. I know we'd all love a chance to go number eight on that cake. I mean nothing against Coco Crisp, but you suck Coco Crisp.