As befits a game won in the eighth and
then again in the ninth , the portion of the sold-out crowd that was ambling happily down the
ramps leading to Gate D was giddy as all get out Saturday. Given that
it was the sixth consecutive win for its team, there was bound to be
more than just an extra bounce to its step.
First, there was a generally joyful noise that contained no discernible words. Then several hearty rounds of “LET'S GO METS!” Then a brief digression into “YANKEES SUCK!” Then more “LET'S GO METS!”
I'd been caught up in post-win chants before. They rule. As I left a game in July '84 after Keith Hernandez beat Neil Allen in the tenth  and increased the Mets' lead on the second-place Cubs, there was no containing the mass glee. “WE'RE NUMBER ONE!” alternated with “STEINBRENNER SUCKS!” back
then. I had just returned to New York from a summer semester in
college, desperately following the Mets' rise through box scores and
Sports Phone calls. If anything told me that what I'd imagined from
afar was happening for real, it was the chanting that continued that
night long after the winning run was scored.
So Saturday's refusal to stop cheering just because the game was over
and we were no longer looking at a field wasn't unprecedented. But this
was: As we streamed out of Gate D, a 7 train rolled by, heading west.
Unprompted but all at once, the mass of fans that emerged into the
sunshine shrieked and waved every pair of arms it had toward the
For anybody who figured they'd beat the crowd and jump on that first 7 out of Dodge, we had a message:
WE WON AGAIN!
WE BEAT THE MARLINS!
WHAT A GAME!
WE CAME FROM BEHIND!
WE DIDN'T LOSE TO LEITER!
AL PITCHED GREAT!
BUT PEDRO PITCHED AWESOME!
WE WERE LOSING ALL DAY!
BUT WE DIDN'T LOSE!
WOODY PLAYED LEFT!
HE'S AN INFIELDER!
HE MADE A LEAPING, LUNGING CATCH!
THEN HE DOUBLED PIERRE OFF FIRST!
IN THE EIGHTH!
WE CAME BACK!
IN THE BOTTOM OF THE INNING!
BELTRAN TIED IT ON HIS THIRD HIT!
MIKE SMOKED A GROUND-RULE DOUBLE!
THAT PUT US AHEAD!
BRADEN NEARLY BLEW IT!
BUT WE WERE SAVED BY A CALL AT HOME!
WE NEVER GET A CALL ANYWHERE!
BUT TODAY WE DID!
VICTOR DIAZ CAME UP IN THE NINTH!
AND VICTOR DOUBLED!
VICTOR ALWAYS DOES SOMETHING!
RAMON CASTRO WAS UP NEXT!
WILLIE HAD DOUBLE-SWITCHED HIM IN!
WILLIE'S A GENIUS!
RAMON SINGLED VICTOR HOME!
WITH THE RUNNING RUN!
AGAINST GUILLERMO MOTA!
TAKE THAT MOTA!
TAKE THAT MARLINS!
SIXTH IN A ROW!
WE'RE OVER .500!
NEXT STOP, FIRST PLACE!
AND 111TH STREET!
The train, thus informed, rumbled onward and we all went our separate
ways to spread the word in relatively quieter, somewhat less