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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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Don't Get Me Rewrite

The game begins in the spring, when everything else begins again, and it blossoms in the summer, filling the afternoons and evenings, and then as soon as the chill rains come, it stops and leaves you to face the fall alone.

That, of course, is by Bart Giamatti, a sweet, sad salute that will be quoted as long as there are baseball fans. But there’s a wrinkle Giamatti didn’t cover. The transition from summer to fall feels a lot less elegiac when your team is spent and playing such horrible baseball that you’re either bored and infuriated.

When that happens — as it has been happening to the Mets for the last week — you want your team to cut it out already, to exit stage nearest as soon as possible. It’s time for football, or catching up on season box sets of shows you didn’t watch because 7:10 was taken, or whatever it is you do with the winter. You’ve known for a few weeks at least that they aren’t going to win, but now they’re playing out the string with all the intensity of a McDonald’s cashier, and you can no longer stand the sight of them.

You know you shouldn’t do this. You know these last few games are precious, that pretty soon you’ll be starving for the merest morsel of Mets news or opinion or rank speculation. But you can’t make yourself remember that, because right now if David Wright makes one more error or Angel Pagan takes one more bad route or Manny Acosta serves up one more meatball you really might slam your head into the desk or hurl the TV out the window or do some other rash thing.

The Mets just finished a 1-8 homestand that went awry pretty quickly, what with hatgate overshadowing a well-done 9/11 tribute, and ended with Terry Collins incandescent with rage. I wouldn’t be surprised to hear Terry decided to make his charges walk to Atlanta — they’re down around Trenton somewhere about now, rolling bags dragging. Terry is hoarse but still yelling. By limping to the finish line, the Mets are threatening to undo what had been a pretty good story of overachievement and resilience, marked by encouraging campaigns for a number of young, useful players.

There’s still time to correct that. But not a lot. And yesterday, even the weather seemed engineered for a grimmer tale. The day started off relatively warm and summery, and the Mets hung in there in the early innings. But then the rain came, and so did the Nationals’ bats, and when the wet weather trickled out it was cold and clammy and the Mets were beaten again and somehow it was fall.

13 comments to Don’t Get Me Rewrite

  • Frank

    Hey Jason. Great trooping with ya! In case u don’t remember I was the sandtrooper with you.
    Fun night indeed! I was upset they lost ,it would’ve made the night even more special. But these days you can’t count on the Mets. Hope next year is better and hope we can do this again!
    Hope to see you troop again! Unless you’re still in pain?

  • dak442

    Switched cable providers the other day, so I took this opportunity to miss some bad baseball and watch all the stuff that was still lingering on my DVR. (Boy, is Eraserhead stupid.)

  • kd bart

    I’ll be surprised if Angel Pagan is on this roster next spring. He’s the Poster Child for “Phoning It In”.

  • Joe D.

    Hi Jason,

    Now, what was it that so many were telling me last winter regarding the philosophy of focusing on sabermetric principles toward obtaining relatively undervalued players? They kept on hailing Sandy’s success in Oakland, failing to understand this philosophy had nothing to do with his success putting together the great championship teams but rather the dismal string of teams below .500 in his later years as G.M.

    And this was not Sandy’s fault. He was given no choice in 1995 after new ownership took over and demanded he cut the payroll.

    Today it is different owners but the same demands which forced Sandy to sign eleven players (representing 44% of the roster) that we were told were undervalued and would surprise us. Yet, the results were the same. Again,this futility is not Sandy’s fault either. He is still not being given a decent amount of chips to deal with.

    Those fed up with Omar pointed to his success at Oakland as a barometer, failing to notice the seasons and circumstances they were referring to. Very few GM’s can be succesful when told to shop at the bargain basement and for damaged goods (only Tampa Bay had been succesful being in the bottom third of payroll and since 2008 they have inched their way out of that category too).

    Focusing on sabermetric principles toward obtaining relatively undervalued players is really just a way of saying that the owners are not investing in improving the team on a major league level. Let’s hope Sandy is doing the job on the minor league level even though the fruits of his work won’t be seen for a few years, one way or another.

  • Florida Met Fan Rich

    I’ve got it!….We are tanking it for a better draft pick!

  • I think this team has a right to be fed up. Even though saddled will all the rumors regarding Madoff to the Einhorn nonsense to the speculation of who was being traded, who was staying, Reyes’ present and future status, injury after injury, and yet everyone kept playing hard and never gave up, even though management treated these guys like cattle. I think the 9/11 hat bullshit was the final straw where everyone on that team finally felt demoralized enough to say fuck it, I’ve had enough of this season, this team, this crappy stadium, these fickle fans and this front office and ownership who either don’t know what they’re doing or not telling anyone. I don’t blame them. It’s been a rough year.

    • March'62

      Are you kidding me? You think that one of the Buffalo Men, someone who is trying to make a major league roster for the first time, will stop trying because he doesn’t get to wear an NYPD cap? Or the veterans that are either playing for contracts (Reyes), or a spot in the rotation for next year (Dickey, Capuano), or to get their overall numbers higher so they don’t look like complete fools (Bay) would just stop trying? I don’t buy it. I think there’s not enough talent in certain roster spots and definitely a lack of leadership on the field (Wright). I still believe that Sandy and his henchman needed a season to see what’s wrong with the major league roster and will do what’s necessary. Ah, the hope of next year.