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Jason Fry and Greg Prince
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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And So It Blows

Congratulations to the 2009 American League champions. They invested well and they followed through. They made the Twins and Angels look like the Nationals and Mets. They earned what they've achieved to date.

That said, both World Series teams, particularly their fan bases, are loathsome, and I'd like to see both of them lose.

Of course I want the Yankees to lose more. Of course, of course, of course. If you went to Villanova or live in South Jersey, I understand if you feel differently. If you've had ultra-unpleasant experiences in the city of Philadelphia and all you want is for those people who inflicted them on you to feel disappointment, that's absolutely valid.

I have to confess I was surprised by the level of vehemence toward the Phillies vis-à-vis choosing sides in the comments accompanying Jason's call to arms. I was present for 2007 and 2008. I hated the Phillies a whole lot for taking what the Mets let them have. I wasn't crazy about them in 2009 either, but they won the National League pennant without our being much involved on their march. They're an abstraction in my Met life at this point.

The Yankees are omnipresent. Their fans are omnipresent. I'm a New Yorker and a Mets fan. That doesn't jibe with a desire to see the Yankees succeed. Not one I could possibly conjure anyway.

It wouldn't matter who they were playing: the '09 Phillies, the '99 Braves, a hypothetical grouping of '85 Cardinals and '69 Cubs…I hate the Yankees. I hate the Phillies, just not nearly as much and for not nearly as long. Someday the Phillies will suck again and we won't care about them any more than we care on a given day about any particular National League opponent. The Yankees will still be the Yankees.

Eternal beats transitory most every time.

Either way, the Mets lost 92 games. It's not our battle — just our headache for the next four to seven games and during whichever parade whose brass bands we're unfortunate enough to overhear.

36 comments to And So It Blows

  • Anonymous

    Several people in the comments to Jason's post noted that the Phillies are at least just a temporary foe – preceded by the Braves, and before them the Pirates, and before them.. etc etc; Whereas the Yankees have been a bane since before the time of the Mets – to the time of my father's and grandfather's days as Brooklyn Dodgers fans and so it goes.
    But beyond that, the Phillies are at least a foe that commands a degree of respect. As annoying as they may be, and as much stinging trash talk has been thrown around by the likes of Rollins et al – they are a team with $30M less in payroll than the Mets who have shown and proven with gritty play, smart moves and genuine talent to grind their way to the top. Meanwhile in the offseason, the Mets are sure to disgust me by further bloating their payroll, hoping to solve all their problems with money, by overpaying for whatever overrated free agents are available.
    It's no great mystery or coincidence why the Mets and Red Sox, the Yankees' key rivals, are the 2nd and 3rd highest payrolls in the league – they're impossibly trying to keep up with the joneses in the Bronx – for survival within their market, and within their divisions, respectively. That trend really ruins baseball for me by sullying wins, and making losses and seasons like the Mets' 2009 that much more embarassing. All that's left until the day that a salary cap is imposed (and unfortunately, it may take another Yanks championship or two to really force the mid-market and small-market teams to take a stand) is to root for the Davids over the Goliaths – and in this WS matchup at least, it's clear who is who.

  • Anonymous

    I saw Satan round the basepaths while the Yankmees engaged in post game, on field love fest. Anyone else ?

  • Anonymous

    Look, I'll always be a New Yorker first, so I'll always root for my city first over a rival city, even with its my team's local rival. Besides, it can be a lot of fun. What Jet fan didnt relish watching Brady get plastered by the Giants in the super bowl?
    Theres also something to be said about the tradition of baseball in the city. No matter what, the Yankees ARE baseball. They have the history behind them and they are the global ambassadors of the game. Do I like it? No, but it is the truth. A WS win by the Yanks keeps the championship in the city that I love.

  • Anonymous

    Hi Greg,
    Will be rooting for New York City, not so much the Yankees. Cannot root for the Phillies under any situation.
    But unlike seasons past, I have to at least respect this bunch of over-priced pinstripes. They come to play as a team unlike previous over-priced editions with the likes of Randy Johnson, Jason Giambi, Kevin Brown, Gary (The Met) Shefield, etc. who played for individual accomplishment.
    Also, the Yankees should thank the Mets for getting to the world series anyhow.
    – If we didn't include Carlos Gomez in the Santana trade Minnesota would have scored that run in game two and won, so who knows?
    – If we didn't obtain Victor Zambrano from Tampa Bay in exchange for Scott Kazmir, a ball would have been tossed to first base instead of the first base stands following Kendrick's error on the previous bunt, so who knows?

  • Anonymous

    The way I see it, the pain I feel at Phillies success is directly tied to the pain I feel at the Mets failure. What Philly does is, and has always been, irrelevant. I contend that if the Mets hadn't failed, Philly would be nowhere. So of the four results:
    Yankees Win: Despair, hate ,agony.
    Yankees Lose: A bit of glee, talk about curse for knocking down Ruth's house.
    Phillies Win: Same level of despair over state of Mets. (And the desire to see them fail next year only revs up 2010 baseball season)
    Phillies Lose: Still won 3x divisions. Still made the WS. I don't get much, if any, joy of them not going all the way.
    Additionally, and this was kinda my stance in 1999(although I mostly tuned out, as I will this year) Was that you kinda want the team you lose to to be the best, because it implies you may be the second best. In 1999, if the Braves win, both the Yankees and Mets lose to the Braves. The Yankees, despite the Pennant aren't arguably better than the Mets. Obviously, we didn't “lose to” the Phillies this year, we lost to Jerry Manuel and the team doctors, but the premise is the same. The Mets get more props for winning the 2010 east division over 2x world champs.

  • Anonymous

    I'm a Jet fan who rooted without reservation for the Giants against the Patriots in the Super Bowl. But most Jets fans do not feel 1/10 the animosity toward the Giants that Mets fans feel toward the Yankees.

  • Anonymous

    Of course, in 1999, the ambivalence was also tinged with a sense that the Mets would have given the Yankees a far better Series than the Braves did. I'll always believe the 1999 Mets were better than the 2000 Mets (who didn't have to go through the Braves to get to the Yankees). The 2000 Mets ended up losing to a Yankee team almost as mediocre as the 2006 Cardinals.

  • Anonymous

    I'm rooting for the ground to open on Wednesday night and swallow up both teams. I root for only one baseball team THE NY METS.

  • Anonymous

    I can get behind this idea as well. Yankee Stadium is already cracking, maybe that's actually the gateway to hell opening up and come game 1 it'll suck in the entire place.

  • Anonymous

    I'm rooting against the Yankees so my tax dollars don't have to pay for another parade……
    dave nyc

  • Anonymous

    More than anything else, these fans deserve eachother. I'd love to be in attendance and incognito at one of these games to see it all go down.
    And, I'll say it again: go Phillies. You just know Fox is going to be gunning for the “Phillies can't beat the REAL New York team” signs in the crowd on Wednesday. Anything like that will make my blood boil, meanwhile a sign in Philly that might read “same city, same garbage, same result: Phillies win” would make me giggle with glee if it proves true.
    I love my native city, but there's so much about it that I hate–mainly the recent unending influx of rich, white collar transplants who buy the politicians and shoo away the locals to give themselves more legroom, meanwhile their stupid hipster kids are pompously gentrifying whatever neighborhoods remain from old New York. The symbol of this hatred? A pristine, brand new Yankee hat and all the bullshit self-righteousness that comes along with it. They represent everything that is wrong with New York.

  • Anonymous

    If they somehow resurrected the old Soviet Union, and the Central Red Army formed a baseball team, and that team came to be regarded as the pre-eminent team on earth, the very best evidence of the superiority and inevitable world domination of Communism, and that team played the Yankees?
    Look for me in my red “CCCP” baseball jersey, waving a pennant with the hammer and sickle on it.

  • Anonymous

    this is non-baseball related, but be careful what you wish for. Vladimir Putin is doing everything he can to bring back the Soviet days of yore.

  • Anonymous

    I made that mistake too. Not doing it again.

  • Anonymous

    Also agreed. The Giants are not evil, they're just not the Jets.
    Let's also not forget that we Jets fans already had plenty reason to root against the Patriots.

  • Anonymous

    Starting to have a change of heart, rethinking that my support of New York City has to be related to having to root for the Yankees.
    Why? Well, we all know the Yankees actually purchased this pennant – even Mike Francesca admits the flag is diminished because the Yankees have an economic advantage with at least double the revenue of any other team in baseball being in New York and having the YES network. They were able to snatch Sabathia from Milwaukee by simplying waiting for the Brewers to offer him a multi-million multi-year deal that was great on it's own and then added how many multi-millions more to the pot to intice him to come to the Bronx.
    So maybe I should root for the Phillies for I'm so much against teams buying a pennant. But then, I hate the Phillies for their arrogant, public put downs of the Mets (for all their swagger no Met ever made a public comment putting down any other team).
    Wish the Japanese World Series was being televised so I could watch that instead and ignore the one stateside.

  • Anonymous

    I support your consideration of switching to the National League for this one. Personally, I rooted against the Braves in 1996 and have regretted it ever since. I won't make the same mistake again.

  • Anonymous

    Base ball?

  • Anonymous

    Sounds like my reasoning.

  • Anonymous

    Still not sure who I'll be rooting for. It will either be the Yomiuri Giants or Hokicaido Nippon Ham Fighters.

  • Anonymous

    Being a Mets fan in this endless 2009 baseball season is like being force-fed a six-foot s**t sandwich every day for eight months.

  • Anonymous

    How else could this annus horibilis have possibly ended? I mean, our whole team gets hurt, the guys who manage to stick around are terrible at baseball, we're out of it by August, we're subject to months of ineptitude and embarrassing gaffes, our GM loses it in a press conference while explaining why he fired his idiot buddy. Of course our perpetual nemesis and current bete noire meet in the championship. No matter what happens, people we hate will be happy in a week or two, and we'll just sit quietly dreading next year.

  • Anonymous

    I'm just going to go into an alcohol induced coma for the duration of the series.

  • Anonymous

    Wow, did you purposely pick the Yankees of Japan vs Bobby's nemesis team here? If you did, well played. If not, it's a STUNNING coincidence.

  • Anonymous

    Holy shit! I didn't realize you were serious! This is fucking incredible! It's legitimately the Japanese version of our World Series!!!

  • Anonymous

    Terribly sorry to triple post on this one, but I can't get over it. Anyway, like here in the States, I'm anti-Yankees. Go Fighters! Cheer on Yu Darvish before the real Yankees buy him for 275 million in a few years (you heard it here first). I can't sing this guy's praises enough.

  • Anonymous

    Way back in the day, my best friend (and the only other non-closeted Met fan in my neighborhood) and I would often discuss all things Met-related (still do BTW). One day the topic was: what would be the absolute worst thing that could happen in the Mets universe? It was unanimously agreed that losing the World Series to the other NY team would be the worst possible thing that could theoretically happen.
    Then it did happen and it was every bit as dreadful as I could have imagined. It was actually worse, in fact. The experience was profoundly depressing, it took me a few seasons to really get over it and feel the old enthusiasm again. Watching that ghoulish mayor yuk it up with those bat-throwing scumbags as they celebrated yet another soon-to-be-forgotten title on OUR FIELD was the low point of my Met fandom. They swooped down like vultures and tore up the carcass of what was, up to that point, one of the most fun periods in Mets history. They crushed our dreams, ruined our season and defiled our ballpark all at once. After that, I stopped merely disliking them intensely while ignoring them. My hatred was permanently cemented that day and I have actively rooted against them in every possible way ever since. There is no scenario in which they'd be anything but a sworn enemy.
    So yeah, I hate 'em. Hate the Phillies too, sure. But the Phils are sad-sack losers on a real roll for the last few years. They're not the Evil Empire.

  • Anonymous

    Really, I hadn't thought there would be much, if any, debate over this:
    Phils win, the cheers are in another CITY.
    Skanks win, the front-running braying and loudmouth preening that pass for skankfandom will suffocate us all. The toxic flumes from sportstalk radio — think of the lineup you're talking about empowering, from Francesca to Kay to Sterling to Waldman — will irradiate the entire community, sowing the seeds of another generation of lockstep Skanklust. a Skanks win will unleash what little braggadacio the few sentient Skankfans had held back during all these ringless years, baby.
    Does any Mets fan really want this? Better that the Skanks should extend their lead in the one number they curiously don't publicize: most World Series LOST — they lead with 13; let's root unreservedly for No. 14. Do it for Gil.

  • Anonymous

    This isn't a series I'm getting too much in a tizzy over. I'm indifferent to the other 29 teams in MLB I just root for the orange and blue. All teams have ignorant fans. I'll just watch it because I'm a baseball fan and don't really care for other sports. Neither team can be called a fluke team that got on a hot streak and we haven't seen that in the world series in a number of years. So it promises to be a good competive series.
    We need to worry about what we need to do to get back to a world title.The Mets don't need anymore bad contracts. I'd take Lackey over Matt Holliday if I had to choose but that doesn't look like the direction management is going in.
    As for a salary cap please just so mizers like Carl Pohlad, Kevin McClatchy, Jeffrey Loria can pocket more money they stole from competent profit making organizations like the Yankees. I don't expect them to have a $200 Million payroll but if you own a professional baseball team and intend on increasing profitabilty winning helps. If you own a professional baseball team your not going on a breadline any time soon so invest in your product. Oh lets not forget about collusion on salaries and signing bonuses for most of these players first contract is probably their only one so take whatever you can.

  • Anonymous

    me 2…oh what a mistake. Yanks are a constant hate. Braves…Phils…..back in the day Pirates….Cardinals…..Cubs…..those are interchangeable.
    After spending the day reading different views I seriously considered changing from rooting for Phils…to rooting for Yanks…But then 10 mins of listening to WFAN reaffirmed every reason why I will never root for the Yankees. Phone call after phone call with entitled Yanks fans…”Hey Mike, great to have the Yankees back in the World Series, WHERE THEY BELONG” Aye. So there you go….cannot root for that. I'll take the trash talk from the Phils as it won't be everlasting and won't be within earshot…

  • Anonymous

    To some of us, the Yankees were a team we never played in a game that counted until we'd been fans for 20 years. The league-vs.-league rivalry, frankly, always felt a bit forced unless Roger Clemens was involved. And as for the Davids vs. Goliaths, Philadelphia's a larger TV market than Boston. Just because the Phillies acted like a small market team back when Bill Giles and Ed Wade were running the show doesn't doesn't mean they've ever really been one.
    I miss the pre-strike, pre-1996-Yankees mentality of Mets fans, back when we refused to behave like anybody's kid brother. The Mets have owned this town before, and if they win, they'll own it again. Put it in the books!

  • Anonymous

    Spend five minutes in Philadelphia (or anywhere in the Delaware Valley) and you'll change your mind in no time. Trust me on this.

  • Anonymous

    Philadelphia is only 90 miles away. And when they chose to make their world series victory parade an orgy of Mets-bashing last year, I, for one, heard every word.

  • Anonymous

    I can very easily avoid Philly fans from 90 miles away. I can not open my newspaper, turn on my TV, listen to my radio, venture outside, or even look out my front window without being assaulted by Yankeeness. The braying, the punctuating every idiotic sentence with “Baby!”, the brand-new pink hats, the hypocrisy (they sure love A-Roid now, huh?)… Lets go Phils!!

  • Anonymous

    It's a horrible choice. But I have to root for the Phillies. If the Yankees win, we have all the usual crowing, chest-beating smugness from the minions of The Varsity. Not that we don't have that already, but 27 is 3.8% more than 26. HOWEVER… the fact that we're used to it — and the Mets ownership and management is used to it — means it's less likely to force hands or drive home a point.
    A win by the Phillies is a win for NL baseball, a win against the Evil Empire, and a consecutive World Series win for the Mets' divisional rival. I think it's that last point that may be the most important: nothing can underline the Mets' management and personnel shortcomings like seeing such unequivocal success from a divisional archrival. If you've ever been frustrated that the Mets don't seem to appreciate their predicament or show the motivation to make meaningful changes, you should hope for yet another Phillies championship to help drive home the point. If that doesn't, then nothing will.