And yet another surprising win for the Amazins' - beating the Marlins and Dontrelle Willis 6-1...with Kaz 'close your eyes and pray it finds the strikezone' Ishii on the mound. Mike Piazza actually got three RBIs off of two opposite field hits, meaning he probably won't bat in any more runs for at least 2 weeks. Good pitching, timely hitting, the 2005 Mets can be formidable when everybody elects to do their job.
Being at my childhood home in Connecticut for the weekend allows for several distractions that can't be found in my East Village (Stuytown actually...) apartment. Like the "VH1 Hits" and "MTV Hits" channels, which aren't on Time Warner Cable and actually play nothing but videos, sans commercials. I got to see the new Kelly Clarkson and Backstreet Boys videos back to back. While not nearly as strong as "Since You've Been Gone," "Behind Hazel Eyes" is wonderfully bombastic in all the right places, and is still far better than it has any right to be; even if this time her around band comes closer to biting Evanescence than Interpol. I can't remember the name of the new Backstreet song, but it's the epitome of a 'mature' comeback ballad--overcooked with somber piano pounding and a huge string section. Lots of fire and car scenes in the video too. Meh.
And then there's the X Box; something that you think you'd be more likely to find in the apartment of a 25 year old than at his parents' house, but Dad sure does like his sports video games. MVP Baseball 2005 is the latest incarnation of the popular EA Sports franchise, and it's tons of fun, and quite weird in a variety of ways. Firstly, it comes packed with "EA Trax," so you're constantly being fed lame mainstream indie songs from the likes of Hot Hot Heat, The Zutons, Bravery, and Dropkick Murphys (did Gammons have a hand in this?). Strangely enough, the misogynist swill of Louis XIV's "Finding Out True Love Is Blind" actually sounds kind of decent when it's accompanied by Carlos Beltran going yard against Miguel Tejada in Home Run Derby.
Even stranger, there's batting 'mini games' where you can tee off against pitchers and earn points by hitting targets and hitting the ball to the proper field. Before you do this, you can choose the delivery of the pitcher you're up against, and you're given the option of a variety of well known arms with recognizable wind-ups like Kevin Brown, Pedro Martinez, Dontrelle Willis, Derek Lowe, and the like. Maybe about 25 in all. Fair enough. Would you believe that one of these supposedly famous pitchers is Jae Seo? Wonder what wiseass Mets fan slipped that one past the beta testers? They utilize his 2004 wind-up; the deliberate one where he swings his arms over his head en route to giving up tons of runs. He's still way better than Victor Zambrano this year, and he's still languishing in AAA. Bummer.