The Good, Bad and Ugly of New York's Baseball Weekend

Derek Jeter and Jon Niese keep on cooking

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    It was 42's for everyone on Sunday.

    Losing 8-2 to a team that has spent the last five years dominating the NL East because your bullpen and defense imploded normally isn't something that leaves you feeling good about yourself.

    The Mets might not have been smiling after getting whupped by the Phillies on Sunday, but they weren't shedding any tears, either. They won two of three in Philly over the weekend, a nice turnaround from the final two games of the Nationals series when it looked like the same old Mets were rearing their ugly heads.

    David Wright's injury isn't too serious, Ike Davis finally hit some balls hard and even Jason Bay hit a home run. Jumping to conclusions based on two games last week was a mistake and the Mets aren't turning into a pumpkin just yet.

    Now, on to the rest of the Good, Bad and Ugly of our local baseball weekend.

    GOOD: Derek Jeter's making a lot of people erase those "Is he too old?" columns they had prewritten for April with one of the best starts of his career, including a 5-14 weekend against the Angels. Luckily, those people had also prewritten "Is Jeter going to break Pete Rose's hit record?" columns as well.

    GOOD: Does someone have the name of the surgeon who shaved down Jon Niese's nose this offseason? Unscientific research shows a direct correlation between Niese's smaller proboscis and two great starts to get the season rolling.

    BAD: The worst part of Sunday's loss by the Mets is that they wasted a good start by Mike Pelfrey, which is not a recipe for success unless Pelfrey magically became Tom Seaver. It wouldn't be a good idea even if that were true, but at least you could feel relatively confident that more good starts were coming.

    UGLY: Phil Hughes turned the clock back to April 2011 on Saturday which was a lot less enjoyable than the nostalgia provided by Jorge Posada's first pitch on Friday. It's one bad start, but Hughes' rope is only slightly longer with management than it is with fans who spent a sunny Saturday cursing his name.

    GOOD: Raul Ibanez's presence isn't something that's been cheered too much to this point in his Yankee tenure, but he hit quite a home run on Sunday night. Were this still a time when you got a meal during a flight, we'd make the joke that they served a meal on that flight.

    GOOD: The sentiment behind every player in the major leagues wearing number 42 on their backs to celebrate Jackie Robinson once a season. There's no more fitting tribute to those banned from the field unfairly than having every field filled with the memory of the man who shattered the color line.

    BAD: Turning your head away from the game on April 15th and then trying to figure out who is on second or who is hitting since everyone wears the same number. Small price to pay, but it is still a price.

    GOOD, BAD and UGLY: Any response to Yankee Stadium responding to Tim Tebow's presence with more boos than cheers works because it was just a reminder that he's as polarizing a sports presence as there has ever been. It doesn't help that he was palling around with Dwyane Wade a few hours after the Heat beat the Knicks.

    GOOD: The vipers coming after Hiroki Kuroda after his first start was New York kneejerk reaction at its very worst. That made his brilliant performance on Friday all the more enjoyable, unless you were already penning another hit piece an eyeblink into the baseball season.  

    Josh Alper is a writer living in New York City. You can follow him on Twitter and he is also a contributor to Pro Football Talk.