With his team facing a 24-run deficit, the veteran infielder stepped up to the mound and tossed a 54-mph curveball. The pitch beaned the batter perilously close to the derrière, prompting him to fake a charge at the mound before giggling as he made his way to first base.
You might think this is an elaborate parody scene concocted by a bored sportswriter, but alas. It is a factual description of the New York Mets' Tuesday night:
Jose Reyes hit Ryan Zimmerman with a 54-mph pitch while losing 25-1.
Zimmerman's reaction? pic.twitter.com/YTlGKZ29MO
— ESPN (@espn) August 1, 2018
The Mets, it can be said, are in a bit of a tailspin. But on Tuesday night, their 25-4 loss to the Washington Nationals in the nation's capital marked a low point — and one with impeccable comedic timing, given the game was played just hours after the Mets chose to largely stand pat at the MLB trade deadline, signaling an apparent belief that they're within contention range. Meanwhile, SNY's Michael Avallone notes that the 25 runs the Mets gave up to the Nats is the second-highest run total allowed in franchise history, just one shy of the record 26 coughed up to the Philadelphia Phillies back in 1985.
Infielder Jose Reyes, in case you were wondering, threw 48 pitches Tuesday and allowed six runs — which The Wall Street Journal's Daniel Nasaw cheekily notes really wasn't the problem. Now, after a season that started 11-1, the Mets are 44-60 and staring down the back half of a season that Kristie Ackert of the New York Daily News described as a "recurring nightmare."
But if you're a sucker for watching position players pitch, or for good old-fashioned clubhouse dysfunction, stay tuned. And for tips on how to enjoy the MLB season when your team really sucks, Tim O'Donnell has you covered here at The Week. Kimberly Alters