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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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Look What You've Done, Mets

THAT’S IT! The Mets have made me so mad that I’m leaving the country!

OK, while I actually am leaving the country for six days in Iceland, the trip doesn’t actually have anything to do with the sad JV version of our team’s and their somnambulant performances of late.

Still, it won’t exactly break my heart to play a Get Out of Unfun Baseball Free card for nearly a week if it means I miss games like the weekend’s grisly crapfests against the Brewers. I won’t mourn that I didn’t see our starters’ faces fall if they dared make a mistake pitch or looked up at the scoreboard and saw they’re two runs behind. I won’t be sad to miss watching Mets run the bases like they’ve prepared with an hour of the dizzy bat race, or fielding like their gloves have been replaced by lawn darts, or trying to do whatever it is I dimly recall players wearing blue and orange are supposed to do when they swing a bat.

The starting lineup has been much reduced by injuries — the latest news is the revelation that Michael Conforto is struggling with cartilage damage in his wrist, which means he’ll have to go on the DL for a few weeks grimly plow along as if nothing’s wrong. Add in David Wright‘s herniated disk, Neil Walker‘s back, Travis d’Arnaud‘s shoulder, Lucas Duda‘s back and Juan Lagares‘s thumb and you’ve got 2/3 of a lineup replaced with Mayberry-Muno irregulars, whose effectiveness you may remember from last June’s unwatchable baseball.

Granted, last summer turned out pretty OK — there’s a book about that. The Mets came disturbingly close to getting no-hit by Jameson Taillon Tuesday night, but in 2015 they got no-hit twice — oddly, I was in the house both nights — and were still allowed to go to the World Series. Now as then, as long as they can ride their solid starting pitching they ought to be able to hang around all season, and there are three playoff slots available to teams that can do that.

But the highlight films sensibly reduce the Summer of Loathe to a montage before getting to the good stuff; nobody wants to lovingly recall fidgeting as Clayton Kershaw dissected a Triple-A lineup. Since that’s what we’re back to, I’m OK with skipping a week of it.

23 comments to Look What You’ve Done, Mets

  • dmg

    take me with you. please.

  • Barry

    But last year the Gnats were the ones with injuries, and were dysfunctional to boot.
    This year, the Gnats aren’t going to implode, so even if the Mets manage to hang around .500 (like last year) it’s very unlikely they’ll catch the Gnats.

  • Matt in Richmond

    The last couple of weeks have featured more than their fair share of ugly ball, but oddly, I’m still pretty upbeat about this team. Despite the injuries, bad luck, and early season struggles by guys we depend on, we’re still holding a wild card spot and in sight of the division. Sounds like d’Arnaud will be back soon, there’s talk of possibly bringing up Nimmo, and I’m hopeful that the Walker/Lagares/Conforto injuries are minor. Meanwhile, our rotation is starting to look more and more like what most of us hoped entering the season, so it’s not like these guys need to slug like the 27 Yankees for us to win games. If we can just win enough to kind of keep our heads over water for the next couple weeks, I bet a hot streak will be coming soon.


  • Coincidentally, the Mets lineup is becoming known around the league as “Ice Land.”

  • Daniel Hall

    Woke up, showered, made a coffee, got up the box score, moaned briefly, then returned to my coffee.

    Hey, maybe they can catch the Braves for some fun anecdotes we’ll laugh about in a few years.

    • Jacobs27

      I also live in Europe, Daniel, and I’m starting to skip my morning routine of box-score and/or condensed game-checking.

      It’s that bad.

  • eric1973

    Jason, say hello to the Mets bats for me while you’re there.

    I’m going to the dentist today, which of late is less painful than watching these guys hit. Maybe I’ll run into Legares while I’m there.

    Saving grace of this team is the freakish SP, which keeps us in every game until they give up a couple of runs. Overlooked is the fantastic relief pitching, give or take a Bastardo. Not a mop-up man in the bunch. Great confidence in all of them.

  • kdbart

    Since the Ghost Met lineup is quite unwatchable these days, at least there are other things on TV to watch. The OJ 30 for 30 on ESPN this week has been quite remarkable

  • Dave

    Danny Muno…that’s who I keep having visions of. Just that this year his name is Matt Reynolds and Whoever Ty Kelly Is. John Mayberry Jr has been reincarnated as Alejandro De Aza.

    Injuries happen, Alderson should know that (and not like the guys on the DL were hitting when quasi-healthy). Yet we keep starting seasons with a bench acquired through dumpster diving.

    • Rob E.

      Their bench coming out of spring training was Plawecki, Flores, Lagares, De Aza, and Campbell. That’s two ex-starters in Flores & Lagares, a good prospect in Plawecki, and for all the hate, de Aza went .262/.333/.422 in 114 games last year. I’d hardly call that dumpster-diving. I know it’s become cool to hate Eric Campbell, but he IS the 25th man on the roster. Every team has a guy like that. Every team DOESN’T lose 3/8 of their lineup and have two other guys playing while compromised (Walker & Conforto).

      That being said, they are not executing AT ALL. They are giving away too many easy runs. But it’s everyone, not just the fill-ins. They don’t steal bases, they don’t move guys over, they never bunt, they don’t hit sacrifice flies, they don’t hit with two outs…none of the little things that help win when you’re NOT hitting home runs.

      • Daniel Hall

        I think sitting for the entirety of April and May has completely ruined De Aza, so now that he’s needed (leadoff?? really??) he can’t hit anymore, since he’s colder than a frozen lake in Siberia. De Aza didn’t come out of the trash can, but he sure made his way into it.

      • Greg Mitchell

        I’ve seen this cliche a dozen times lately. Campbell is horrid “but every team has a 25th guy.” Yes, technically, every team has 25 guys and one of them has to be the worst. But few teams have someone hitting .160 with no power (and plenty of ABs). You can look it up. And if they exist, they are usually backup catchers who have other attributes (some power or throwing arm, see: Rivera,Rene).

  • Greg Mitchell

    Also Terry seems to be the only Mets fan in NY who doesn’t realize that Jim Henderson definitely can NOT pitch more than one inning at a time.

    They need a youthful spark: Herrera and Nimmo for a week each? See if one catches fire? If not, then they know they need to make another big deal in July.

  • Mikey

    it’s definitely hard to watch lately. is Jung ho Kang hitting like .700 against us? and looking like Arenado in the field? are young pitchers like Taillon and Zach Davies dominating our shitty lineup? yes. Except Kang is probably just hitting .500.

    it’s such a luxury to have the pitching we do, but they are stressed every game. Still, they do need to throw more strikes and try to keep their pitch counts down. Every Mets pitcher seems to hit 100 pitches by the 5th or 6th inning. and our hitters are constantly behind in the count and then hitting weak grounders, striking out or hitting lame pop flies.

    I do see this turning around soon though. a few guys can get healthy and the home runs should start up again. and that’s our game.

  • Have a great trip, Iceland is in the thick of their first European soccer tournament now so you get to see the Viking madness that is not unlike our Thor.

  • Kevin from Flushing

    September 2014, the day after the Mets were eliminated, I flew to Europe. A few days later when the Yankees were eliminated, I flew to Munich and participated in Oktoberfest. Good times.

    Enjoy yourself Jace, I’m jealous! (Mostly for the Iceland visiting, partly for the get out of baseball card)

  • Matt in Richmond

    Couldn’t agree more Rob E. The Mets depth was actually a strength going into the year. No team could lose as many starters as we did in such a short period of time and not struggle to some degree. de Aza is not as bad as he’s looked recently, unless he just suddenly forgot how to play, he’s always been a productive hitter. The hitting with runners in scoring position will improve, it almost has to by default. The no team speed will be a problem all year, but we should excel in enough other areas to make up for it.

    Regarding Henderson; he had just thrown 5 pitches, FIVE!!!! in the previous inning. And coming off an off day. If you can’t go back out for a second inning in that scenario then I don’t know what to say. I would probably just say that Kang has been hitting well against every one and he caught one. Nothing to do with the “second inning” nonsense.

  • Dave

    Sorry, lousy bench (except for Lagares), that’s my story and I’m sticking to it. I had no confidence that Flores would produce in that role and he did not (only woke up when he started playing regularly), Plawecki has yet to show any signs of being able to hit at this level, and the less said about De Aza and especially Campbell the better. Then we got a nearly 30 year old minor leaguer in Ty Kelly and Matt Reynolds, who was hitting .230 playing in a stadium where freaking Ty Kelly can hit .380.

    A bench needs versatile veterans like Uribe and Johnson (whose names, taken together, have taken on new meaning apparently).

  • Matt in Richmond

    5 pitches Greg. 5 pitches.

  • Eric

    I’ve started tracking the wildcard standings.

  • Mike

    FAFIF. Was read AND now maybe even written (?) from Iceland. Maybe you can bring back some elvish magic for the Mets. Wishing you safe travels.

    Btw, after a little practice Eyjafallajokull rolls off the tongue a lot like Syndergaard.