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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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Spring of Our Unshakable Content

After paying just enough attention to Spring Training to notice the hitters aren’t necessarily behind the pitchers anymore — guys in Mets unis lost 14-9 on Saturday but won 11-0 on Sunday — I realize my anxieties are lagging behind my capacity for calm. That’s a very unusual March alignment.

Starting shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera might miss Opening Night. I’m not worried.

Indefatigable utilityman and logical replacement Ruben Tejada might be traded. I’m not worried.

Kevin Plawecki might be sent down because the Mets would rather he play regularly and that a legitimate backup sit in his place. I’m not worried.

The Mets may not have a legitimate backup in-house for Travis d’Arnaud. I’m not worried.

David Wright is conserving his energy. I’m not worried.

Dilson Herrera fouled a ball off his knee and is disappearing himself to some WBC-qualifying nonsense. I’m not worried.

A vaguely familiar collection of vowels named Taijeron has driven in more runs than anybody in camp, yet is reportedly not under serious consideration for the 25-man roster. I’m not worried.

Goose Gossage said something silly about Yoenis Cespedes. I’m not worried.

Ken Davidoff wrote something sillier about Lucas Duda. I’m not worried.

And as for pitchers, the only one who worries me is Oliver Perez.

Oliver Perez, last seen in a Met uniform around this time of year in 2011? Why worry about him in the context of 2016 Mets Spring Training? Well, a Twitter movement was afoot the other day to infiltrate a Nationals promotion that encourages fans to choose who Washington should immortalize in bobblehead this season. They didn’t say which fans could have a say, so it was thought amusingly mischievous that Mets fans saddle Nats fans with good ol’ Ollie. Unofficial exit polls indicated we were winning the Perez caucuses.

That worried me. That’s unnecessary hubris, no matter how fun-loving. That’s asking for Oliver Perez to carry a 65-inning scoreless streak into a September showdown versus the Mets, a team that has not had so much as a walk, let alone a hit off the veteran lefty all year, I can just hear Gary Cohen telling me.

Let sleeping dogs who wouldn’t accept a demotion to Buffalo lie. Let the rest of March play out without major incident. Spring Training is, as usual, dragging, but it doesn’t seem to be piling up casualties. That, too, might be asking for it, but what can I tell ya? I’m not worried.

But don’t worry. There’s still time.

I had a real nice conversation about Amazin’ Again and some other Metsian items last week with the guys at the Rising Apple Report, which you can listen to here. And did I mention you can order a fresh copy of the only book celebrating the 2015 National League champions right here?

If you’d like to come on down (or up, depending on your locale) to beautiful Bergino Baseball Clubhouse on Thursday night, March 17, for my first event in support of Amazin’ Again, please RSVP to bergino@aol.com. Thank you.

11 comments to Spring of Our Unshakable Content

  • Art

    Greg, admit it. You (and I) have not felt this way since March of 1986. We know that, barring injury, a special season is just around the corner.
    Let’s just enjoy the ride.

  • dmg

    last month i realized that the last two playoff appearances, 2006 and 2015, were the only times i made it to spring training, so i pencilled in plans to head down for the games this weekend.
    those plans fell through, though; they’ll have to do it this year without me.

    i’m not worried.

  • Dennis

    Wake me up on April 3 when the real season begins.

  • Dave

    Hmm, Ollie is now one of those lefty specialists whose final stat line for the year is 68 games and 31 and one-third innings. Can’t make much of a difference if that’s all your employer can trust you to do. I’m not worried.

    • Dennis

      Apparently he’s getting $7 million for 2 years. Not a bad gig; maybe facing 1-2 batters a game every few days……I’d take that in a second!

  • Daniel Hall

    Content? Nah. Just when you thought this front office were a little less brain dead than before, they’re waiving Ruben Tejada, AFTER Asdrubal Cabrera messed up his knee, and AFTER they gave Ruben $3M AFTER they had already signed Cabrera. It’s not like the De Aza mess, where something better came along afterwards. It’s just a complete mind-blowing mess.

    Can’t believe it. I’m shuddering at the thought of Flores at short to start the season. And backing up third base: Eric Campbell.

    I. just. can’t…

    • Dennis

      Mind blowing mess is a bit of an overreaction when you’re talking about the release of a backup infielder. You do realize that they didn’t let Willie Mays go, right? And as far as the money…..they are only on the hook for $500,000 since he was let go 15 days before Opening Day.

      Funny……I didn’t hear too many “brain dead” comments about the front office last summer with the moves they made, or when they signed Cespedes this year.

      • Daniel Hall

        You do realize that they were first after Carlos Gomez before they acquired Cespedes in July, and that the impact of Johnson and Uribe was ultimately limited? Who knows who else they tried to get even before that. So, Ces was Plan B at best, and he’s now here on a 1-year deal basically to build value for another big money fishing campaign.

        And now Tejada. The mind blows.

        • Dennis

          Again……Tejada’s a backup infielder. If you’re worried about who’s backing up short or 3rd and not who’s starting, then times are good.

  • Pat

    I’ve heard speculation that Tejada was untradeable at $3m and that the Mets actually did him a backhanded favor by waiving him now, allowing the Cards or some other team to sign him for the year for somewhat less than that. He winds up with less cash but presumably a lot more playing time in 2016, and therefore a better shot at a decent free agency deal for 2017 and beyond, while the Mets get nothing back for him but save $2.5m in payroll expense. Tejada certainly had no future with the Mets beyond this contract, so that scenario is kind of plausible. And it would mean that all the Mets really did wrong, in retrospect, was to sign him for more than any potential trade partner would want to pay him.

  • Rochester John

    The timing of Tejada’s release, and the ultimate amount of money the move will save the Mets, make me a little nervous, still, about the Mets’ finances (I’m a Met fan…it’s in my blood). While it looks like we’re saving 2.5 mil, I would imagine that down the road, we would have been able to make a deal somewhere, maybe paying half of Tejada’s salary. We get something back for him, and we don’t have to pull the trigger until we know more about what’s going to happen with Cabrera. As it is, the possibility of giving significant playing time to either Campbell or Reynolds is OK with the Mets, in order to save, let’s say, 1.5 mil. Are we in such bad financial straits that 1.5 mil is worth giving up the amount of insurance Tejada provides? Heck, we could make that 1.5 mil back with a Tejada/Utley bobblehead giveaway.