You will never see a more electric closer entrance than the one Edwin Diaz and SNY pulled off on Sunday
Edwin Diaz has been the best closer in baseball this season. Full stop. Not Clay Holmes, no matter what the Yankees stans across town might say. Not Josh Hader, who has been susceptible to the home run ball and was just shipped out of Milwaukee. It’s been Diaz—a former superstar turned flop turned back to superstar—who has posted 26 saves with a 1.39 ERA while hurling 91 strikeouts in 45 innings of work. That’s pretty good, for those of you who still remember how to divide.
But it’s more than just the stats. Like all iconic closers, from Mariano to Kimbrel, Diaz has also sharpened one of the important blades a shutdown arm can wield: spectacle. Each time Diaz enters the game, the conclusion already foregone, he trots out to the pulsing horns of “Narco,” sending the Flushing Faithful into delirium. On Sunday night, however, with Diaz entering a 5-2 game against the NL-East-rival Braves, looking to close out a 4-1 series victory and hand the division stranglehold right back to the Mets, things hit a whole new level of theatrical when the local SNY broadcast put a cameraman in the bullpen with Diaz to capture each and every step of his epic journey from pen to mound. The results, as it turned out, were incredible.
This is a 'True Detective' season 1 level tracking shot. Somewhere Christopher Nolan is taking notes. And best of all, Diaz paid it all off with another 1-2-3 inning, striking out Atlanta’s new big-money man Austin Riley looking—the Mets staff’s 19th K of the day—to send the Braves tomahawk chopping back to Georgia with a six-and-a-half game deficit to overcome. Stand clear of the closing doors, fellas.
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As for SNY, daps all around. Buoyed by the affable old-guy trident of Gary Cohen, Ron Darling, and Keith Hernandez in the booth, SNY has long been considered one of the best local baseball broadcasts in the country. The creativity and production value behind this shot on Sunday night only serves to bolster that reputation. For all their 8K cameras and Statcast clusters, ESPN’s MLB broadcasts look positively pedestrian by comparison (and the less said about Fox, the better). This is what baseball should look like—and, more importantly, should feel like—and when the copycats inevitably come rolling in, you won’t hear us complaining. Come one, come all. Sound those damn trumpets.