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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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Larger Than Life Character

“Hey, do any of you guys know a pitcher named Bartolo Colon?”
“I know Bartolo Colon! I saw him drive a run in for the Angels off Mike DeJean in 2005! It was his last hit in the majors, and he’s still playing today!”
I was at that game! Kaz Ishii struck out the side in the top of the first and had 8 K’s through five yet didn’t make it out of the sixth!”
“Colon won 12-2, and the next night Marlon Anderson pinch-hit a game-tying inside-the-park home run off Frankie Rodriguez in the ninth inning!”
Cliff Floyd won that game in the eleventh with a home run! The next day the home plate umpire threw out Mike Piazza for questioning a strike call…in the first inning!”
“Colon won 20 games and the Cy Young that year!”
“To Bartolo Colon!”

Did somebody mention Bartolo Colon’s name?

“You guys talking about Bartolo Colon? I listened to a game where he went toe to toe with Shawn Estes in Montreal in 2002!”
“I heard that game! Colon scattered 13 hits and went the distance to beat the Mets, 2-1!”
“He stranded the bases loaded in the ninth inning when he grounded out Edgardo Alfonzo!”
“I thought the Mets had a chance for the Wild Card but they fell apart within a few weeks and Bobby Valentine got fired!”
“The Expos were about to go out of business, but Omar Minaya traded three future stars for him anyway!”
“Colon won 10 games for the Indians before the trade and 10 games for the Expos after, which made him a two-team, two-league 20-game winner!”
“To Bartolo Colon!”

“Bartolo Colon won 18 games at the age of 40 in 2013!”
“He played in a stadium that was mostly empty seats and raw sewage!”
“He was on the seventh team of a career that began in 1997!”
“He made the All-Star team a year after being suspended because of PEDs and started the first game of the playoffs for the A’s three years after not pitching at all!”
“Colon was a teammate of Dwight Gooden’s, struck out Mo Vaughn and pitched versus Pete Schourek all in the same postseason series!”
“I hear Colon gets his blood spun in a revolutionary but controversial fashion at a clinic somewhere in Boca Raton, Florida!”
“To Bartolo Colon!”

“Bartolo Colon is considered one of the most effective control pitchers in baseball!”
“Only David Price walked fewer batters in the American League last year than Bartolo Colon!”
“Only Anibal Sanchez had a lower earned run average in the American League last year than Bartolo Colon!”
“Only Max Scherzer won more games in the American League last year than Bartolo Colon!”
“Colon threw three complete games last year and every one of them was a shutout!”
“To Bartolo Colon!”

“Bartolo Colon is listed at 265 pounds but is generally believed to tip the scales at something a lot closer to 300!”
“Colon will be 41 years old next season!”
“On the day Bartolo Colon was born, the Mets beat the Dodgers in 19 innings in a game that ended at 4:47 in the morning New York time!”
I remember that game! Chris Cannizzaro pinch-hit for the Dodgers, and he was an Original Met!”
“Did I mention Colon’s like 300 pounds? And gonna be 41?”
“Most guys his age and size would be long retired by now! But not Bartolo Colon! Colon just got $20 million for two years from a team that’s supposed to be hamstrung by limited resources!”
“Colon was considered a real catch at the Winter Meetings and it was the Mets who caught him!”
“The Mets got Colon the day after they introduced Curtis Granderson, who they’re giving $60 million to over four years — and Granderson missed more than a hundred games last year!”
“The Mets haven’t signed a pitcher for a lot of money since Oliver Perez, and they bid against themselves to sign him!”
“Oliver Perez refused to go to the minors when he deteriorated beyond repair in 2010 and wound up getting released with a year left on his deal!”
“Perez became a decent reliever with Seattle and was on the market this year, but the Mets signed Colon!”
“To Bartolo Colon!”

“Bartolo Colon’s gonna pitch for the Mets next year because they won’t have Matt Harvey!”
“Matt Harvey dates a supermodel and posed naked in a magazine!”
Harvey was the best pitcher in the National League until he hurt his elbow in August, and he was only 24 when his season ended. Colon was 40 yet kept pitching and winning while Harvey was trying to avoid Tommy John surgery!”
“Tommy John started that 19-inning game against the Mets the day Colon was born!”
George Stone won that game for the Mets! If Yogi Berra had started Stone in the World Series, the Mets would’ve beaten the A’s!”
“Colon’s gonna have to be at least pretty close to what he was for Oakland last year to justify his contract!”
“If the Mets didn’t get Colon, they’d have to figure out a way to hold on to a Harang or a Dice-K or rush one of their minor league pitchers!”
“It still seems like a risk to commit that much money to Bartolo Colon, though it could also work out if he stabilizes an otherwise young rotation!”
“Bartolo Colon may be older than Scott Atchison and Bartolo Colon may be bigger than Mickey Lolich but Bartolo Colon can really pitch!”

“Did somebody mention my name?”
“To Bartolo Colon!”

10 comments to Larger Than Life Character

  • mikeL

    great piece!
    i was caught-by-surprise stoked at the news yesterday evening.
    your take Greg has me downright giddy.
    to Bartolo Colon indeed!

  • Dave

    Colon might make Sid Fernandez look like he had the body of a decathalon gold medalist, but I’ll take him. Add me to the giddy list…any FA signing is a gamble, but Sandy has finally started playing at the big money table instead of the penny slots.

  • kjs

    If this PED colon makes anyone giddy, we’ve really hit the utter skids of Desolation Row.

    The $20M could have been used to lure decent scouts from other organizations.

    This game bas become a corrupt farce. $20M to an ancient cheat. Putrid.

  • FL Met Fan Rich

    We are applauding the signing of a 40 year old, morbidly obese fat “Roid Boy”…for 20 million?


  • Dave

    Well, could have called Marlon Byrd a cheater when they signed him, and I think most of us were glad we had him. LaTroy Hawkins was the same age and we were glad we had him. And if a pitcher wins 18 games with an ERA well under 3, I don’t care if he has to buy his suits in the Portly aisle. If he had those stats and was in his early 30’s he would have cost at least $80M for 5 years if not more.

    • kjs

      Byrd was and still is a cheater. I was ecstatic when we dumped him off. “Shortened my swing” my ass. There is zero accountability for the corrupt in society. That courtesy has now been extended to the game of baseball as brought to you by Bud Selig.

  • open the gates

    It’s a decent amount of money, but two years is not a very long-term commitment. If Colon keeps the Mets respectable as they wait for Syndegaard to come up and Harvey to come back, it’s money well-spent. And if he does well and some of the kid pitchers are ready ahead of schedule, the Mets could clean up sending him as a Rent-an-Ace to a team on the verge of the postseason. It’s not an earth-shattering deal, but it has possibilities.

  • March'62

    At least we get to keep Rusty this time.

  • […] does it matter to me? Because aces oughta give me the impression they are or can be larger than life, and not just in the Bartolo Colon sense. Our ace of aces was and is the gentleman whose name […]