I won't go as far to say that last night was some kind of call to arms by Johan Santana, but it's good to see that has possibly threw down a challenge to the rest of this meandering Mets team, and possibly make one last big run to prove they are relevant and that they will not go quietly into the early abyss of a August where the games no longer matter. Johan pitched 5 2/3 innings of no hit baseball against our arch rival Phillies, until Ben Francisco hit a b b straight up the middle to end Johan's shot at immortality. But Johan buckled down and lasted into the eighth inning, when Jerry Manuel actually made a bold move. With runners on first and second with one man out , Jerry sensing that he needed a win in the worst way - bypassed his middle relief core and put the game into the hands of our closer Francisco Rodriguez. Frankie was excellent, shutting down the Philths for the next five outs. But for the second time this week we owe Jeff Francouer, our much maligned first pitch swinging machine, who is either feast or famine for securing the sole run off a fastball by reliever Chad Durbin. If it wasn't for Frenchie we probably would be 0-5 on this road-trip instead of 2-3 ! Maybe this has something to do with the call up of Fernando Martinez, but if that is the case, it is better late than never that a fire has been lit under Frenchie's ass ! And for those of you who think that Carlos Beltran is passionless, check out his explosion of emotion durin the game. He is as frustrated as we are, and I think pretty soon there might be some balls that will get the brunt of his ire ( I hope) ! Kudos's also go out to the recently promoted Ruben Tejada, who has replaced the recently released Alex Cora ( Alex you are a good man - I wish you all the luck in the world as a manager). Tejada didn't wow us with his bat, but he definitely saved at least two runs from scoring yesterday.Look I read the standings everyday and my head tells me that there is no way we will comeback from a eight game deficit. But the heart of a Mets fan is very strange. It leads you to believe that the impossible can happen. It leads you to think that Aregenis Reyes or Ruben Gotay is the solution to second base, it wills you to feel that a .500 win team can win 92 games. It is strange but I will take the stance that until the Mets are mathematically eliminated from contention that they still are in it ! Damn why am I such a fool ?!?Because I am a Mets fan !!!                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     " He is the   man !" And with that said.... HERE COMES THE INFAMY !!!Happy Birthday wishes go out to one of the best power hitters that have ever lived , Frank Howard (1936). Frank was the hitting coach from '82- '83 under then manager George Bamberger. He became the Mets tenth manager when Bamberger was relived of his duties in late '83.Middle reliever from the ''98 team,John Hudek is 44 (1966).New York Mets traded pitcher, Frank Lary to the Milwaukee Braves for pitcher,Dennis Ribant on August 8, 1964.New York Mets traded minor league outfielder,Rob Katzaroff to the San Francisco Giants for washed up outfielder,Kevin Bass on August 8, 1992.New York Mets traded outfielder,Lance Johnson, pitcher, Mark Clark and infielder, Manny Alexander to the Chicago Cubs for middle reliever,Turk Wendell, closer,Mel Rojas and outfielder, Brian McRae on August 8, 1997. It wasn't a good trade for the Mets, but at least we got Turk Wendell- one of the looniest men to ever don a Mets uniform !Mo Vaughn was in attendance for the Phillies game last night , and He beat the Phillie Phanatic in a Dance off !! Actually Mo sat on the Phanatic until he crushed the mucous green mascots spleen burst !