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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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Graduation Season

Steven Matz graduates to the big time on Sunday. Or the Met time, at any rate. The efficacy of Sandy Alderson’s doctoral thesis in mathematics — the GM contends six starters will fit snugly into five slots — remains to be seen, but official confirmation that the last lavishly hyped pitching prospect of the current generation is indeed on the cusp of arriving atop a major league mound was cause for joyous celebration Friday night.

So we celebrated. And it was joyous.

To be fair, Matz’s impending promotion served primarily as happy coincidental backdrop for the real reason festiveness was in the air at Citi Field. Steven Matz was on the way and Noah Syndergaard was on the hill, but center stage belonged to another young star: Melanie Spector. Someday you’ll find Melanie in your program at the Met, her budding vocal talents having been honed at the Manhattan School of Music, an institution that will be fortunate to number her among its ranks come fall. Until then, you can find this freshly minted graduate of Leonia (N.J.) High School at the Mets.

Talk about having your priorities straight!

Talk about having your priorities straight!

Melanie’s been a Mets fan since birth. I’ve seen the pictures. I’ve seen her in action. I’ve seen her keep score. I’ve seen her repurpose the rituals of prom night and put them to vivid use for Harvey Day. And now I’ve seen how she puts a bow on her high school career.

Steven Matz leaving Las Vegas has nothing on Melanie Spector taking Manhattan.

Friday night, Stephanie and I were honored to attend Melanie’s graduation party, which of course took place at Citi Field — she and her parents Garry and Susan wouldn’t be anywhere else on an evening the Mets are home (assuming there’s no conflict with the Metropolitan Opera, where Susan plays oboe and Melanie takes copious notes). The occasion called for a grand setting, so they booked an Empire Suite. Actually, any spot in the ballpark is grand when it’s chock full of Spectors, but the suite was an excellent touch. It was right behind home plate; it came with a buffet from which Shake Shack burgers let forth a siren song of fierce temptation; and premier cultural icon Mr. Met dropped by to say hello, albeit extremely sotto voce. Mr. Met, like our hosts, demonstrates excellent taste.

The Mets provided only two hits against their Red nemeses, but one of them was a leadoff home run from Curtis Granderson and the other was a catalytic triple from Dilson Herrera. The three-bagger, legged out in the fifth, led to the quintessential June 2015 Mets rally: a two-out walk followed by a two-out walk followed by a two-out walk. Three good eyes, twelve helpful balls and one additional run. Staked to an enormous 2-1 lead, Syndergaard protected its honor through the eight before Jeurys Familia closed the production with equal dollops of verve and panache.

Bravo for the Mets! Brava for Melanie! Our thanks to her for thinking to include us on such a special night. She is destined to experience many special nights ahead in whatever venue she chooses. We were truly tickled to have been a part of this one.

8 comments to Graduation Season

  • Dave

    As a former Manhattan School of Music employee (long before this young lady was born), I say good for her. If you know a young’un who wants to be a serious opera singer, that is the place to go, although suffice to say it’s not much of a sports or sports fan school. But back in the day there was club-level hockey. Juilliard stopped playing against MSM because they were too rough and were probably taking aim at pianists’ fingers or something. Maybe Melanie sings the National Anthem at Citi one day.

    As far as last night’s game goes…2 hits and hope for the opposing pitcher who normally has very good control to start walking everyone, then our pitcher give up one run tops. Good sustainable game plan there. Now I see why we have not only a hitting coach but also an assistant hitting coach.

  • Ken K. in NJ

    I get it: Harvey, Matz, Niese, Colon, DeGrom, Syndergaard and pray for no rain.

    Ooops, it’s raining right now, on Six Man Rotation Day One (Take 3).

  • Eric

    Who got sent down to make room for Matz? Which is to say, short bench or short bullpen?

    With an elongated rotation, I wonder if the starters can be made regularly available for post-season-style relief work in between starts.

  • eric1973

    “Verve and Panche” — You make Felix proud!

    Eric is wondering who got sent down? Better question is who got put on the DL?

  • Ken ralst ok n

    They don’t need to make a roster move bc you can carry a 26th man for a double header

  • eric1973

    But this may not be technically considered a doubleheader (?)

  • Eric

    The Mets indeed were allowed to carry 26 for the practical double-header.

    Leathersich for Matz, with another move (Campbell or Herrera) when Murphy comes off the DL on Tuesday.