Just one day after David became the all-time hits leader in New York Mets history, he hit the most important home run in R.A. Dickey‘s chase for twenty wins, and a subsequent Cy Young Award. Dickey is now the first New York Met pitcher to win twenty games in a season since Frank Viola did it in 1990. But it didn’t come without it’s usual drama from the bullpen.
What a great treat for the Mets fans, to have Dickey get his twentieth win in front of the home crowd at Citi Field. It may not have been a packed house, but there was a buzz in the crowd, as the fans were well aware that they had a chance to witness something special today. The fans were excited, and many had very creative signs showing their appreciation for all Dickey has done this year. For a short time, as the Mets were trailing 3-2 in the fourth inning, it felt as if maybe this wasn’t the day Dickey would get his twentieth win. Then, in the bottom of the fifth inning, David Wright took an outside fastball offering for a long ride over the right-center field fence for a three-run homerun. Dickey must have breathed a sigh of relief.
Up three runs, it seemed like Dickey was sure to get his twentieth win now. The crowd began to sense the twentieth win was getting closer to becoming a reality. They started giving Dickey standing ovations any time he stepped out of the dugout, and chanting R-A-Dickey…R.A. Dickey! Twenty wins seemed like a sure thing. After all, he has only given up more than three earned six times in 2012. Three runs is a safe lead right? Unfortunately, for the Mets bullpen, three run leads are another story.
The bullpen nearly cost R.A. Dickey his twentieth win of the season. Jon Rauch seemed to be fired up. He obviously recognized the significance of the situation he was in, and seemed to be putting a little extra on his fastballs to try and lock down Dickey’s twentieth win. With one out in the ninth, Rauch gave up a two-run home run that cut the Mets lead to just one run. Luckily, Parnell was able to come into the game, clean up the mess, and shut the door on the Pirates, preserving the lead, and giving Dickey his twentieth win of the year.
Thousands of Mets fans across the country were on the edge of their seats, all united with Dickey in that dugout, as he sat hopelessly watching, and probably praying to himself, that his bullpen would close this game out. As Mets fans were running out of finger nails to chew, the bullpen finally did close out the win for Dickey. Mets fans haven’t had much to smile about in 2012, but they were all smiling ear to ear when Mike Baxter squeezed that third out in the ninth inning.
R.A. Dickey has earned a lot of respect for his feats in 2012. Now the question is, will Dickey getting to twenty wins be enough to bring him a Cy Young Award?