Well, that was a disturbing loss. But let's keep in mind the positives:
1) This team has become much more patient. 8 walks yesterday, right? They're taking lots of pitches and forcing the opposing pitchers to go deep in the count, and rack the pitches up.
2) More timely hitting. Yesterday was an example, but so was today -- 3-1 going into the top of the ninth is a position any home team would want to be in. We're getting better at it.
3) Middle-relief. Marmol was ON today. He faced seven and struck out four, I believe.
4) No injuries. All of those little dings -- Fukudome and Pie getting tackled in the basepaths, Soto getting run over by Fielder, Dome and Reed crashing into the walls -- they would have resulted in DL trips last year and the year before.
5) Hustle. Ramierez is running out of the box when he hits a big one. Reed keeps gutting out infield hits. Theriot is hitting the ball very hard. Soto has come back form his minislump. Fukudome is, of course, the poster child for hustle.
So, yes. Losing in the top of the ninth because Kerry blows a save really, really sucks. No one likes it when that happens. But this feeling is exactly what teams felt last year. Remember the september game against Cinci? Remember the game against the Brewers where Aram hit the walk-off? The worm MUST turn, and we're going to lose some of these.
But there's no need to get out the razor blades. This is a good team. They're putting it together. I really think -- and hope -- that this is the year.
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