Isn't this just microcosmic of Jason Bay's year.
Sunday was Jason Bay Bobblehead Day at Citi Field.
Now, the trend has been that players happen to have big games the day their bobblehead is given away.
Not Bay. He was 0-for-15 in his career against Sunday's Braves starter, Derek Lowe.
So he sat on the day before the All Star break, while fans received his bobble-headed likeness.
And, wouldn't you know, without Bay, the Mets played their most complete game of the weekend against the Braves.
They were helped by another fantastic outing by Johan Santana, who went seven scoreless innings (5 hits, 3 walks, 5 strikeouts), and is now working on a 16-inning scoreless streak heading into the All Star break.
So with their 3-0 win Sunday, the Mets got back to within four games of the Braves in the division - which sounds a whole lot better right now than six games back. They halted their season-high 3-game home losing streak, and remain a half-game in front of Philadelphia, who incredibly swept a 4-game series from the Cincinnati Reds while the Mets struggled with the Braves. (I apologize for prematurely putting the Mets in third place at the end of the live blog Saturday - I was just so frustrated by the Mets' loss I counted it twice.)
The Mets also saw a couple of hot streaks continue:
-Josh Thole added another pinch-hit (RBI) single to his total - he's now hitting .529 (9-for-17) overall since his call-up.
-Angel Pagan closed out the series with a 3-for-5 effort. He is absolutely on fire, with Carlos Beltran's return imminent. (Pagan has already received word he will start Thursday night when Beltran and the Mets return to action in San Francisco. Pagan will be in right field and he will platoon with Jeff Francoeur.)
-An encouraging sign from Ike Davis, who had been slumping - he hit a bomb of a home run about 420-plus feet out over the center field wall. (A mammoth shot in Citi Field.) It was good to see because Davis was looking frustrated at the plate - throwing bat and helmet after his frequent strikeouts.
And so the Mets head to the All Star break in second place, 4 games out. Had you told me this would be the case in April, I would have signed up immediately. And San Francisco is not exactly firing on all cylinders right now, so there's a chance the Mets can start the second half hot.
Come back all during the break - I have lots of baseball stuff lined up for you over the next few days.