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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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I Hold These Truths to be Self-Evident

Greg Gibson is bad. That’s all there is to it.

Clayton Kershaw is spectacular. That, too, is all there is to it.

If the Dodgers wanted to beat the Mets every game ever, they’d start Hong Chih-Kuo each time and never take him out.

The Mets can’t afford to play shoddy defense. Nobody can, obviously, but there’s a list somewhere that suggests during the current 15-day period retroactive to July 2, they have no margin for error.

The Dodger Stadium PA was playing “Miss You” during BP while Sandy Alderson explained Jose Reyes was headed to the DL.

Reyes has made four All-Star teams and injured himself in the week or two leading up to the game three times.

The Mets lost a 6-0 game in the same series they won a 6-0 game. I’m both very curious to know if that’s ever happened before and damned if I know why things like that make me very curious.

Dillon Gee’s probably going through a dead-arm or adjustment phase that besets all young pitchers. He’s not necessarily morphing into Matt Ginter or Jae Seo. He’s not. He’s not. He’s not.

Ruben Tejada stealing third with two out and the Mets down six as Carlos Beltran batted in the eighth was the epitome of “it’s a bad play even if he makes it.”

The girl that guy in the Caesars commercial picks up in the clothing store…she’s a pro, right?

I would have traded Bobby Parnell had I had the chance last year. I, of course, am not the general manager of the New York Mets, and sometimes I’m extra glad about that. I hope Parnell continues to justify my lack of faith in my occasionally hairtrigger judgments.

The Mets need to forget that the next six starters they are slated to face are, like Kershaw, All-Stars. They’re opposing pitchers, not demigods. Vogelsong, Lincecum, Cain and “those animals” from Philly already feels like a meme and a ready-made excuse.

Carlos Beltran, once assumed to benefit from the clubhouse cover provided by Carlos Delgado, has stepped into the sunlight of being The Man and has never looked more comfortable as a result. Funny how that goes.

I had a dream the other night/morning that Jason Bay changed his uniform number from 44 to 86 even though he had just gotten the winning hit in the Subway Series finale. He wanted Jason Isringhausen to have 44 back and, despite his success against the Whatchamacallits, he felt he could use the change of luck — and what could make him more popular with Mets fans than wearing 86? He may have even been sending his teammates a message that it’s time to win another championship.

Angel Pagan and Daniel Murphy will never not make me nervous.

Nick Evans should really use every ounce of whatever playing time he receives in the coming days to hit a ton, no matter who’s pitching (as if it’s that easy). On a team that keeps stitching together lineups from whoever’s not ailing, Evans and Fernando Martinez have demonstrated no sense of timing. Then again, they might have done exactly as much as Scott Hairston and Willie Harris have done had they been around all year.

Terry Collins may not win N.L. Manager of the Year, but he’s having the best season any Met skipper has had since Willie Randolph couldn’t help but have a wonderful one in 2006.

Having lapped up Mets Yearbook: 1979 during the half-innings I couldn’t bear to watch any more of Clayton Kershaw than I had to, I was reminded that the Mets of 32 summers ago were not only dismal, but everything about them was dirt cheap. They brought in second-rate celebrity softball players, as if the guy who portrayed Rossi on Lou Grant was a gate attraction; they stuck white tape over the names on the backs of the current team’s uniform tops and handed them to the 1969 old-timers, their only champions to date; they didn’t give the players’ kids baseball pants for the “fun” game against their fathers; a Chevette was parked in the visitors’ bullpen all year; and even that ridiculous mule looked undernourished. Also, why was Joe Torre — in a fancy suit, no less — giving us such a hard sell from behind a desk regarding the acquisition of Mark Bomback? I was worried Joe wasn’t going to let me out of his office until I bought a term life policy from him.

Honestly, I never thought the San Diego Chicken was that great. Or Alex Treviño.

I’ve hated the Dodgers for four days. I’m about to hate the Giants for three days.

24 comments to I Hold These Truths to be Self-Evident

  • Bruce Jin

    I like especially your last of the self evident truths. It is so true. The Yankees on the other hand I hate all season.

  • The girl that guy in the Caesars commercial picks up in the clothing store…she’s a pro, right?

    Nah. She’s just the best, most expensive date the guy ever had.

  • Ken K. from NJ

    (The girl that guy in the Caesars commercial picks up in the clothing store…she’s a pro, right?)

    One of the more annoying commercials. So, if he left everything but his bathrobe locked in his hotel room, how does he manage to buy a suit, buy drinks, and go to the movies??

    • Will in Central NJ

      Ken, The guy locked out of the room is assumed to be one of those wealthy, high-roller, regular gamblers who has an account with the casino and all shops/theaters/venues associated with the casino. Thus, he’s a “regular”, and everything’s charged to his account. Don’t ask me how I know, since I don’t gamble. I guess I read a lot.

  • Inside Pitcher

    The girl that guy in the Caesars commercial picks up in the clothing store…she’s a pro, right?

    I’ve been saying that for ages.

  • mikeL

    Haha that uber-repeated ad has annoyed for months! Either she’s a pro or he wakes up poolside and realizes that he’s been dreaming snd there’s drool on his chin. Woman in blue dresss alone w/o plans hitting on a guy in robe and matching slippers in the clothing store? She also seems mildy retarded fwiw.

    • If she’s not a pro, he’s an idiot for leaving her in the hallway to reconsider while he goes to get a new key card from the front desk — which is what any normal person would have done two minutes after getting locked out in the first place.

      • nestornajwa

        I miss Ben Hur Movers. I REALLY miss Guiseppe Franco hugging Gary Busey. No manager in the major leagues is doing a better job than Terry Collins. Look at Mattingly flounder in a similar situation. Maybe the Wilpons’ mess isn’t quite as bad as the Dodgers ownership, but the Mets have dealt with a stupid number of injuries.

  • Joe D.

    Hi Greg,

    What truths?

    Last night when Sandy Alderson spent a few innings in the television booth with Gary and Ron and regarding Jose Reyes, he said that last Sunday the doctors told him that though there was a chance, it was highly unlikely one that Jose’s injury could heal in seven to ten days and that it would most probably take a few weeks. And even when he’s eligible to return, Sandy told us Jose might not be ready to return, even then.

    That is not what Sandy told reporters on Sunday, remember? At that time we were told that it was a day to day thing and most likely would not require a stint on the disabled list.

    This time Sandy got caught telling us two different stories. He did not lie to the media but manipulated information by emphasizing the “chance” that Jose could return in seven to ten days and downplaying the possibility of going on the disabled list while he knew much better. If this isn’t additional proof that the organization cannot be trusted for being honest with the fans, I don’t know what is.

    I’m giving Sandy a pass on this, for I don’t think the decision on what to say publicly last Sunday was in his court, just as it wasn’t in Omar’s. Why ownership feels the need to resort to such tactics, I can only guess. But doesn’t it seem so ludicrous that they even feel the need to do so in the first place? What do they perceive they have to gain by delaying the bad news – selling a few more advance tickets since fans think they’d be seeing Jose play when returning from the road trip?

    It’s just stupid and does nothing to help reverse the Wilpons lack of credibility.

    • March'62

      I don’t get the sense at all that the Mets were ‘hiding’ something in the Reyes announcements. I believe they were honestly hoping that he would be ready for the Philly series after the break and therefore didn’t want him on the DL. They were willing to play a man short to keep that hope alive. They were able to put Reyes on retroactively so it doesn’t hurt them other than playing short (no pun intended – wait check that, intended) for a few games. Nope! I don’t see a conspiracy theory here.

      • Joe D.

        What Sandy said about Sunday was completely opposite to what he said on Sunday. Not being open with the fans has happened so many times before that it’s hard not to conclude the Mets were again trying to cover-up the true extent of an injury, for reasons unknown other than a possible paranoia about it’s affect on ticket sales and television ratings.

        Agree, they were waiting to see if there was that slight chance that Jose would recover quickly but we were led to believe the chances of that were way more than just slight.

        • Matt from Woodside

          I think it’s unfair to blame Alderson or ownership here. It wouldn’t make much sense to lie to fans about this injury, anyway. They’re on the West Coast, so every game is on super late. That’s going to have much more of an impact on viewership and ad rates than the possibility of Reyes coming back early. Then there’s the all-star break, then they’re playing the Phillies in a weekend series at home. Fans of both teams would have packed Citifield for that series regardless of Reyes (one of the few times you could say that about a Citifield series this season, IMHO). It’s one series where it’s tough to argue that they might have sold more tickets by keeping fans guessing. I just don’t see a clear motive for lying.

          Alderson was told by a doctor that Jose had the mildest possible hamstring strain. So, they kept him off the DL in hopes that he could sit on the bench for a few days, but still play in the All-Star Game and be ready for the Phillies series.

          That’s what I remember hearing at the first press conference. Only Reyes didn’t improve. He was still feeling like he couldn’t run. They got a second opinion, and everyone agreed that it’s probably best to just put him on the DL, retroactive to July 3. Last night, Alderson just repeated what the doctors had told him the second time around–that it’s probably going to be a couple of weeks.

          Honestly, compared to the past few years, I think it seems like Collins and the front office are approaching injuries with an abundance of caution.

          • Joe D.

            Again, what Sandy said last night was that they were told on Sunday there was only a slight chance the injury could heal in seven to ten days but most likely it would be much longer. I’m fine with that and agree with the decision to wait and see if the hamstring did heal quicker despite the medical doubts.

            What I’m not fine with is another press conference like Sunday when Sandy instead said it was likely Jose would be out just a few days and unlikely he would need to go on the disabled list. We were also told there was a chance he could be back in the lineup as early as Tuesday.

            I know it doesn’t make sense to try and cover up something like this, however, recall over the winter we were told one thing about Santana while Johann told us something completely different. And the winter before that we were told to expect Carlos Beltran back early in the season before Carlos then needed surgery that kept him out most all of the season.

            Just like the Wilpons told us the Madoff situation had no effect on the financial dealings of the New York Mets and we later find out that was far from the case. Or that it was Omar who had a sudden change of mind after telling Willie Randolf to board that plane to Los Angeles.

            This is the way the Wilpons run the organization and it’s relationship with the media and public. Again, I don’t know why they do it bud we all know that this they indeed do.

          • Matt from Woodside

            You’re definitely right about this team releasing bad news in a very weird, fragmentary way during the past few years. It has often seemed like no two people have the story straight, and given the level of media scrutiny New York teams are constantly under, it often ends up sounding like someone is hiding something or outright lying.

            But, in the Wilpons’ defense, they said that the Madoff situation would not affect the Mets about a year before they got sued by Irving Picard. They lost $500 million to Madoff, but still had enough money to run the team. If Picard somehow manages to take another $500 million (or more) from them, then they will no longer have the money to run the team.

            And, with injuries, I just expect to see them handled well. Don’t make Ryan Church fly all over the place when he just had a concussion. Don’t make Reyes bat from one side of the plate because he’s got an oblique injury. I’m glad to see the team finally being more cautious. Because it doesn’t make much sense to bring someone back early just to end their season because they weren’t ready.

            In terms of reporting injuries to the press and fans, I think we’ve got to give them more slack. Those situations are so fluid. On-field trainers make a quick diagnosis that may be wrong, MRIs may reveal something else, doctors may disagree on test results, some players recover from injury more quickly than others, etc. Those are always situations that evolve, and while the Mets have often seemed particularly inept at explaining the situation to fans, I don’t blame Alderson for giving the most optimistic prognosis on Reyes Sunday and then breaking the bad news after getting a second opinion.

  • Tom in Sunnyside

    She may be a pro, but the relevant question is whether she’s comp-ed.

    On another note, Mary Hart was back again. Did she distract that ump on the horrible call at the plate?

    • Maybe they should tell the story from her point of view. Maybe she got locked out of her room in a similar way, went to one of Caesars’ adjacent ladies’ clothing stores and was cutting through the men’s shop on her way to the front desk to get that pesky key card when suddenly…a man in a terrycloth robe appeared like a vision.

      As plausible as anything else Caesars is selling.

  • Will in Central NJ

    Greg, re: Mets Yearbook 1979: Did anyone else notice that Pete Falcone, who actually was a big part of the 1979 rotation, barely got three seconds of screen time?

    I also cracked I smile when I saw the San Diego Chicken hand the ball to none other than Dock Ellis, a Met for half a season.

    • The fleeting glimpse of No. 33 made me wonder, hey, who’s that? Why it’s the only Met pitcher besides Johan Santana to homer in a game in which he threw a shutout!

      That did seem weird. He got as much as incidental screen time as Richie Hebner, traded by the time the film was produced, therefore ceasing to exists (which was fine by me).

      • Will in Central NJ

        I was hoping we’d also see a glimpse of two other southpaw pitchers from that summer of ’79: the veteran Andy Hassler (for a chuckle) and rookie Jesse Orosco (for a glimpse of better things to come).

        • Very Pravadesque production in terms of disappearing those who no longer help the state as 1980 dawns. Orosco (and Scott) didn’t stick around at the ML level, so they don’t exist. Hassler leaves, doesn’t exist. Kranepool let go, doesn’t exist despite being the star of last resort of every other highlight film that precedes this one.

          Glimpse of Dock Ellis was fun, though.

  • Dave

    Best indicator of what that year was like is that there was no mention of the actual 1979 Mets until nearly 10 minutes into the show. We heard a blurb from Jim McAndrew’s resume before we saw Lee Mazzilli.

    • I was kind of hoping Torre would hire some of those 1969 Mets for his Allstate agency or whatever it is Joe was running out in the back in that suit.

      Seriously, Torre suddenly bursting into the segment about hot pitching prospects as he did really freaked me out. I think I’d forgotten how much the face of the franchise he was back then.

  • Joe D.

    At first I thought we were seeing the missing footage from the 1969 edition of Mets Yearbook.

  • Andee

    Well, I guess we can put this TRAYD REYASS stuff to rest finally, can’t we? I never actually thought they’d do it anyway, but now they’re really not going to.

    It did sound kind of hinky that Sandy said one thing when Jose was first injured, and then said, “What they originally told us was (something he didn’t say at the time).” But based on stuff that’s happened under various GMs working for the Pons, I would guess that is more on Jeffco than Sandy, since Jeffco has always been loath to admit that a player could be out for more than a few days.