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Greg Prince and Jason Fry
Faith and Fear in Flushing made its debut on Feb. 16, 2005, the brainchild of two longtime friends and lifelong Met fans.

Greg Prince discovered the Mets when he was 6, during the magical summer of 1969. He is a Long Island-based writer, editor and communications consultant. Contact him here.

Jason Fry is a Brooklyn writer whose first memories include his mom leaping up and down cheering for Rusty Staub. Check out his other writing here.

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Natural Chemistry

Didja notice the advertising sign behind home plate in the top of the first? It advertised swimming pool enzymes, something, judging by what they build over their right field walls, that they apparently use a lot of in Arizona. The brand name?

Natural Chemistry. On the off chance Jason Grimsley was watching his most recent former teammates soldier on without him, he must have turned off his set right there.

Without knowing what or if anybody was using, the Mets sure seemed to have natural chemistry going for them Friday night. The batters drove each other in. The pitchers picked one another up. The standings aligned beautifully.

A tip of the cap to the tied-for-third Washington Nationals who defeated the second-place Philadelphia Phillies in twelve innings and dragged the Atlanta Braves down to their level in the process. The Braves were losing again to the Astros. They're nine behind us. They're closer to last than they are to Lastings.

Roofs were retracted all over the Southwest Friday night. Houston rolled back its ceiling and allowed more air to escape from the Braves' sagging balloon. Arizona allowed us a glimpse of the desert sky, and passing spacecrafts a gander of Met might, particularly that of Carlos Beltran — 4-for-5 with two big bangs. If you chalk up last year as a $17 million practice round, the guy may wind up being worth every penny we're paying him over the next 5-2/3 years.

Think the 'Stros are still smug about replacing Beltran with Willy Taveras? And, on a side note, whose press conference from January 11, 2005 seems like a better idea now: Carlos Beltan's or Randy Johnson's?

The other Carlos hit two out as well. He seems to have a lot to write about in his diary again. And we have plenty of reasons to not doze off despite these ill-conceived 10ish starts and 1ish conclusions. The West Coast and nearby environs are still a pain in the patoot for the nodding fan, but the 2006 Mets make us wanna stay up late.

Heck, any time's a good time to play at the erstwhile BOB. We've got a friend at Chase Maricopa…an accommodating one. Do you realize we've taken eight in a row in Phoenix? It's some kind of Turned Inside Out Field for us. We go there and the home team is cursed. Brandon Webb could change all that Saturday night, given that we didn't touch him at Shea, but we didn't touch Miguel Batista there last week either. Yet Friday night, his pitching lacked poetry. He couldn't even beat Steve Trachsel who was at his most disturbingly prosaic.

I don't know about sweeps or road records or anything. I just recognize a good foot and an available throat when I see it. No soft bigotry of low expectations for these Mets. Keep winning, fellas. Distance from Shea isn't killing you and a little more distance between you and the Phillies wouldn't hurt.

4 comments to Natural Chemistry

  • Anonymous

    i tell you what, i do feel bad about kaz. a lot of people will say “he was a bum,” “i don't feel sorry for a guy making 8 mil a year,” etc. i say to them only that i feel bad for kaz because he never gave up. i feel bad that he came here full of hope and has soldiered on through his three nightmarish seasons in new york without throwing anyone under the bus or lashing out at the media. honestly, show me an american ballplayer in this situation who would conduct themselves with a tenth of kaz's class and dignity. he always talked about how he was not pleased with his lack of performance and how he would try harder, which by all accounts he did. okay, so he turned out to be a bad investment in terms of on-field production. is this the first time that has happened? did he do anything to earn the vitriol that would normally be reserved for braves or yankees? no, all he did was fail to live up to hype. what a bastard. maybe i'm in the minority on this one, but i will miss him. mired in an awful slump, he's among the first mets at the top of the dugout stairs to congratulate a teammate. being benched for not producing, he takes it with a team-first attitude. maybe what i see in him is someone from a culture that still expects to see its people carry themselves with honor in all that they do. i wish more americans cared enough or had enough character to conduct themselves the way kaz did during his time with the mets. i don't care what he did or didn't do on the field. he did the mets and their fans proud as a person, and he is the rockies' gain now. good luck, kaz, i wish you nothing but the best. we weren't all booing you.

  • Anonymous

    i agree. kaz was, in his own way, the very essence of the striver and teammate that the mets at their best embody. it wasn't his fault that he was given an enormous contract — that was the fault of mets management, which should have known better. and since we can't boo management, we take it out on the player. such class.
    nor is kaz the only example of fans judging performance exclusively on paycheck, as our centerfielder might remind us. again, it's at least as much a function of management overpromise and media hype.
    over the years, i have seen a distressing rise in our fan base to buy into the same steinbrenneresque metrics that at their core are one of the most loathsome elements of skank fans: win now, win huge, win arrogantly. make no mistake, i'm loving this season, loving each of these wins, but you gotta ask yourself sometimes, what are we — the fans, not the team (the team has a lovely natural chemistry right now, as greg notes) — becoming?

  • Anonymous

    Exactly right, guys. I spoke to those issue on the previous post. We live on the edge of a Black Hole in the Bronx, and we've gotta be careful not to get sucked in, 'cause we won't recognize ourselves on the other side.

  • Anonymous

    Call it Natural Chemistry. Call it Carlos Carnage. Puerto Rican Power. Stunning Synergy. Whatever you call it, Delgado did his best, but it wasn't enough. What am I talking about? Didn't we win? We sure did. What Delgado failed to accomplish was maintaining his avg. lead over Mike Jacobs. Yup, you heard me, after his four-hit day yesterday, Jakey is batting a cool .260, nine points ahead of our slumping-no-more clean-up hitter. Let's hope they both stay hot.
    And for those of you who couldn't care less what Mike Jacobs is doing with the Marlins or Mariners or wherever he went, realize that he was hitting under .200 a month ago, and if he can bring his average back up to .260, so can Cliff Floyd, and that would make our line up pretty damn stacked.