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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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Comeback Players of Other Years

Harry Truman trailed Thomas Dewey by five points in the final Gallup Poll of 1948. The New York Giants fell 13 games behind the Brooklyn Dodgers in the summer of 1951. I somehow passed geometry in ninth grade. Stories of extraordinary comebacks are woven lovingly into the American tapestry. A few stand out as legend. Y’know why? Because they don’t happen all the time.

On August 11, 2016, a former Speaker of the House invoked Truman ultimately defeating Dewey to suggest his favored presidential candidate of the moment isn’t necessarily in fatal electoral trouble. “Usually,” a trenchant Twitter observer countered, “the part of the campaign death rattle where partisans cite Truman & 1948 comes later.” That this extreme example emerged on the 65th anniversary of the sure-thing Dodgers expanding their lead over the Giants to its largest margin of the 1951 season may be an innocent coincidence or a harbinger of god-knows-what. That it also arrived on the very same day the Mets seemed to implicitly concede their 2016 campaign — or at least suspend active pursuit of the second National League Wild Card — perhaps reminds us how infrequently extraordinary comebacks come together.

I’m no geometrician, but the only angle I see that will connect the Mets to the playoffs is the line about it not being over till it’s over — which, conveniently, was drawn up in-house at Shea Stadium, so we have every right to cling to it. Again, though, that’s the stuff of legend. The stuff of legend doesn’t pop up every day.

You know who pops up every day? Met batters. They also strike out, ground out, fly out, and, if appearances are any indication, give up easily. I doubt they’re consciously throwing in the towel or waving the white flag, as both actions would require effort, but their collective demeanor does not inspire faithful fervor, let alone a modicum of confidence

On Thursday afternoon, the Mets lost to the Diamondbacks, 9-0. Noah Syndergaard wasn’t great. Jon Niese wasn’t good. The offense wasn’t present. I’d make the forfeit joke, but it’s been made already. I didn’t think we’d descend into are they even trying? territory in 2016, but their manager sort of went there in his postgame remarks, so we as mere fans don’t have to be overly polite.

The Mets looked beaten against the D’Backs the way lousy teams looked beaten against the Mets a year ago. Arizona, despite stealing away like the love child of Ron LeFlore and Robbie Dupree, is not roaring toward a Western Division title in case you were wondering. They reveled in a delightful (for them) three games at Citi Field, but otherwise they’ve endured a dreadful season. The Mets, meanwhile, front-loaded their joy into April and selected portions of May, June and earliest July. They’ve been nothing but dour since.

The “won” and “lost” columns contain absolutely equal quantities: 57 apiece. The Mets were nine games over .500 on July 7. They are nine games under .500 five weeks later. There’s a law of averages lurking somewhere inside those numbers, but a team that is 0-7 in its last seven one-run games seems determined to find a way to not win every chance it gets. They have famously not directly followed one win with another in more than a month and haven’t taken any of the past five series they’ve played.

Their relative proximity to the Wild Card — three games as of this writing with 48 to play (or ten games closer to Miami than old New York was to Brooklyn with 44 to go) — continues to tantalize, at least until you watch them conduct their on-field affairs for a month. The best that you can do between the moon and sullen Citi is attempt to conjure a scenario in which a procession of healed and hearty Mets march forth from the DL and into the lineup, proceeding to power themselves and their simultaneously rejuvenated teammates to heights the lot of them had forgotten they were capable of reaching. Reyes comes back, Cespedes comes back, Cabrera comes back, Wheeler comes back, the whole darn shootin’ match comes back. The Marlins, the Cardinals and the Pirates all find themselves stuck in the completive mud while the Mets hijack the first hovercraft they see and whoosh right by them.

It could happen. It could. It probably won’t, but it would be irresponsible of us not to entertain such a fantasy, just as it would be negligent of us to not consider that three out with 48 to play is simply another plot point on the downward graph that will have us six out with 42 to play, 10 out with 35 to play, whatever out with however many to play until sub-mediocrity lands upon its inevitable level.

You can blame the manager, because managers are hired to be blamed. You can absolve the manager, because though the manager wears a uniform, he does not swing ineffectually, pitch without fluidity or forget to go through the motions of holding opposing baserunners on. It’s probably partly Terry Collins’s doing that the Mets have been avoiding awesomeness for weeks on end, though it was probably also probably partly Terry Collins’s doing that the Mets soared above most of the N.L. pack for a spell. I almost wish I could rub two rhetorical sticks together and offer you a flaming hot take on the matter. All I will tell you is I don’t take other people’s livelihoods lightly, thus I’m probably not temperamentally suited to lead a #FireTerry torch patrol. Then again, I’m not exactly prepared to go all Tiananmen Square in his defense.

If the Mets as currently constituted were good enough to not be swept soundly by the last-place Arizona Diamondbacks, any manager could have guided them to a 1-2 record in their past three games. They’re not that good. Maybe they will be before it gets too late. Truman caught Dewey. The Giants caught the Dodgers. I eked out a 70 on the New York State Geometry Regents of June 1978, which served as my adolescence’s veritable Shot Heard Round the World. I wasn’t a witness to the first two miracles, but I can assure you I wouldn’t have bet an isosceles nickel on myself with 48 days to go in that particular school year.

Yet here I am today, complaining about the Mets, just like I did in ninth grade. Yes, that Regents Diploma really took me a long way.

52 comments to Comeback Players of Other Years

  • Berdj Joseph Rassam

    Haven’t seen Ron LeFlore’s name in a posting in a long time!

  • Anderson

    It’s really the lack of effort. Down 3-0 and Curtis lolligaggerson pinch hits and he’s too busy chatting up the ladies instead of getting ready for his at bat, Collins should’ve went over there and smacked that fool in the face. Or when the gorilla Bruce didn’t hustle after the triple I would’ve removed him as well

  • eric1973

    Not to mention Robbie Dupree.

  • eric1973

    I’m sure we can all write books about this season (well, not really), but everything changed the day Ces got injured. We just did not realize it at the time, because he was still out there, on the field, and on the course. He was the heart and soul. Until then, we had all our starters in the lineup, were doing relatively well, without Duda/Wright/TDA, and were really in the hunt.

    Did Cabrera getting hurt dagger the season????
    Legares????
    As I recall, Cabrera was underachieving at the time, same as all the starters, except for Loney (very pleasant surprise). But maybe that was the straw that broke the camel’s back (landing it on the DL as well).

    The starting pitching (Thor/Matz) has sucked for a month (bone spurs), and the relievers have been super. Remember, Thor was probably going to start the All-Star game, and surely TC would have tried to get him a complete game there, too.

    TC yesterday going into fullblown Anaheim/Houston mode hopefully will shake these guys up, but our starting lineup is still intact —– just replacing Ces with Bruce. Legares was not a full-timer, and Grandy is out there now. It is TC’s choice to play various Kellys and/or Riveras, but he does not need to.

    Flores still has not gotten an every day, one-position shot, as he’s always being jerked around / getting injured, and, yes, playing uninspired-like, as well. If they’d only left him at 3B.

    TC drama changes daily, as he still manages the team while being on the mental DL sometimes. Does he really not know how fast (or slow) Jay Bruce is?

    Underachieving in May-Jun was a real killer. TDA/Conforto/Grandy true culprits in a year-long slump.

    That said, never once do I throw in the towel. 3 GB in 4th place (in the WC)? Even in 1979, I had hope until elimination day.

    Maybe that’s just the 1973 in me.

  • Harvey

    And the Yankees now have a better record. Oh the indignity!

  • kdbart

    Curtis Granderson. A 5.1 WAR in 2015. A 0.3 WAR to date in 2016. Except for hitting a bunch of leadoff homers, has done nothing all season. .137 with RISP. 2 for 38, .053, with 2 out and RISP.

    Michael Conforto. Hit .365 in April. Has hit .161 since May 1st.

    Travis d’Arnaud. Has an -0.8 WAR for the season. He’s been a sub-replacement level player this season. Catcher has been a real sink hole for the Mets this season.

    That’s a Trio of Utter Failure this season. There are other that you can add but those three position players have really disappointed.

  • Dave

    You’re absolutely right, Greg, it could happen, and it would be disloyal to the first F in FAFIF for us to disregard that fact. Of course, it’s becoming more and more akin to buying a lottery ticket or playing the slots in Atlantic City, but still. At least we can hope for a turnaround to 2016 without losing lots of money.

    And kdbart is right…injuries alone haven’t killed this team. There have been some serious underachieving and backwards steps, leaving serious uncertainty about some players’ 2017 roles.

  • Brad

    This team was never ever any good. That was evident early on. They have had occasional flashes — but only that — and those have become scarcer lately. Collins does not seem to have a feel for this team. When he first came up, Nemmo gave this team a spark but management can’t seem to recognize that and when Granderson was ready they sat Nemmo down; Collins went back to his automoton moves.

    Everyone cites injuries but the Cardinals have had numerous injuries this year and are still competitive.

    It’s over and let’s not pretend otherwise.

    At what point do you shut down Matz and Syndergaard so they can have their surgeries.

  • Steve D

    Three somewhat rhetorical points:

    1) You now have clear insight as to what this year would have been like without signing Cespedes.

    2) It must be in Collins’ job description (to borrow from the other NY manager) to sit down with Sandy from time to time and say things like “Sandy, we can’t throw out a snail…I need some help.” Maybe he did that and it couldn’t happen, but from his speech yesterday it seems he is going to be more assertive.

    3) The impact of having a true dominant ace, like Harvey briefly was, cannot be overstated. It gives the team a totally different aura. To me Syndegaard and deGrom are more like number 2 starters…Koosmen to a needed Seaver.

  • Mikey

    I think in my mind I wasn’t even thinking about Reyes, Cespedes and Cabrera returning…and Wheeler. but as soon as you said it, I had visions of extended win streaks again…..fleeting visions, but visions. it could happen. still, there are black holes on the team and Walker may revert to sucking again. but there is no doubt this is still possible. LGM!

  • Ken K. in NJ

    Terry Collins’ post-game tirade struck me as bizarre. Who was he talking about when he said there was a room full of players in Las Vegas looking to be here. Eric Campbell? Last time I looked, most of that room full of players were already here or have already been here, and none of ’em looked much different from the rest of the Mets.

    And that business of Neil Walker being already past 2d base on a fly ball. It brought back memories of being like in the 4th grade, with our teacher lecturing us that the whole class is misbehaving except, you know, Neil Walker. Which served no purpose except to make Neil Walker feel uncomfortable, and perhaps get beaten up after school.

    Last point. Why isn’t Dan Warthen getting blamed for any of this? Somehow “The Greatest Pitching Rotation Ever” hasn’t learned a damn thing about holding runners on base and is currently a mess, unable to even put away .220 hitters.

  • sturock

    Again, what is the plan? This is not a lost season if we figure out what we have in Brandon Nimmo, if Michael Conforto learns how to re-adjust when the league adjusts to him, if Wilmer Flores finally finds a position and a role beyond Fifth Infielder. It’s not a lost season if Matz and Syndergaard learn how to pitch through injuries and fatigue as deGrom has. Or even if the decision is made to shut those guys down or have them skip a start or two.

    It’s not a lost season if (one can only hope) Zack Wheeler comes back and pitches effectively.

    It’s this flailing and flying by the seat of their pants than drives me crazy.

    The question remains: Are the Mets developing players in their farm system who can eventually come up and play in the major leagues? Where are these guys and why aren’t they being given every chance to succeed?

    • Steve D

      In 55 years, the Mets have internally developed the following all-star type hitters:

      Cleon Jones
      Lee Mazzilli
      Darryl Strawberry
      Edgardo Alfonzo
      Jose Reyes
      David Wright

      Only Wright really was the face of the team, stayed with the team and had some longevity. He has 1746 hits. I would have to say this is the worst franchise in history for developing hitters. Assume there are no guys coming.

      • Dave

        Very true, Steve. One could maybe add a small handful who were traded early on and became very good major league hitters (Amos Otis, Ken Singleton, Joey Bats), you could argue for Mookie, Brooks or Hundley, but it’s always seemed as though the Mets’ “pitching first” mindset has been at the expense of developing hitters, as though it’s a zero-sum game of some kind. There’s just never been any kind of top to bottom hitting philosophy with this organization.

        • Steve D

          Dave,

          Glad you are giving my list a sanity check. The guys they traded early on shouldn’t count, because the Mets didn’t even know what they had, thus proving they have never known how to develop hitters.

          I thought about adding guys like Mookie and Hubie, but let’s face facts…we are too accepting of mediocrity. Mookie had 1112 hits for the Mets over 10 years. Hundley hit .234 for his career and had one steroid fueled great year.

          I mean the Brewers, Padres, Astros, Royals, teams with about the same number of seasons as the Mets have guys with 3000 hits…our guy has 1746.

    • Jacobs27

      Mets Front Office: I thought flailing and flying by the seat of our pants was a plan…

  • Mikey

    John Jay is on the DL! I repeat, John Jay is on the DL!

    However, that thorny thorn Derek Norris is not on the DL. His Metsian .191 batting average is deceiving as he is hitting .455 against us. small sample size, but last year he hit .250 on the season and .412 against us. Get used to hearing his name often this weekend guys!

    • Guy K.

      “However, that thorny thorn Derek Norris is not on the DL. His Metsian .191 batting average is deceiving as he is hitting .455 against us. small sample size, but last year he hit .250 on the season and .412 against us.”

      Derek Norris has got nothing on Tuffy Gosewich.

  • eric1973

    Line of the year, Steve D.:

    “Very apropos that the score was 9-0, because that is the score recorded if you don’t show up at all.”

  • Guy K.

    I was about to say, just watch, both Robbie Ray and Braden Shipley will each give up 5 runs in their next starts …until I realized that each of them will make their next starts against the Mets.

    • Jacobs27

      Here’s a modest–you would think–goal for the remainder of the season. Can the Mets as a team steal more bases than Thor individually allows?

      Let’s see, Noah’s allowed 36 so far, now. The Mets have swiped a grand total of 27, so… oh, never mind.

  • Pat

    The offense has clearly already checked out. So why waste the pitching?

    If the Mets can’t reverse gear and run off a big bunch of wins by the end of the month (and it sure looks like they can’t), Terry should think about cutting way, way back on the workload for Syndergaard, De Grom and Matz — perhaps even shutting them down completely — and letting September callups eat innings the rest of the way.

    With all the injury issues this team has had, it would be foolish not to save the wear and tear on crucial pieces of the team’s hopes for 2017.

    • sturock

      That’s a really good point as I think the extended workload may have hurt the starters this season. deGrom mentioned it in a recent TV interview, that it was harder to get untracked in spring training because he was off his usual routine in the off-season. Jacob managed to work through it but it may still be affecting the other two guys and, who knows, it may have led to Harvey’s current situation.

  • Rob E.

    I’m kind of surprised at all the comments regarding limiting innings on these guys. If they are risking injury, then yes, shut them down. But in the case of Syndergaard and Matz, how are they going to work through their issues if they don’t pitch? In deGrom’s case, he’s at 126 innings after pitching 191 last year. How are these guys going to build up endurance if you keep limiting them? Madison Bumgarner didn’t become MadBum by pitching five innings and hitting the shower…they are all still in the development curve.

    It’s never as bad (or as good) as it seems. Injuries….sophomore regression…bad situational stats….there’s nothing historically abhorrent here. They were in a pennant race TWO WEEKS ago, and if this was 2014, everyone would be thrilled. There is nothing devastating long-term here. I know someone is going to say if Cespedes and Walker leave, if d’Arnaud and Duda turn out to suck, if Harvey’s career is over, and if Syndergaard and Matz need Tommy John surgery, that’s devastating. Well, YES, that would be. But that didn’t happen yet, and the likelihood of ALL of that happening is very, very slight. They are a good team having a down year. Some of it is their fault, and some of it is not. Have faith or don’t have faith, it’s always something how quick Met fans turn on their own team. They were in the LAST World Series!! That’s WITH Terry Collins managing, Sandy Alderson GM-ing, and the Wilpons owning. They’re not perfect for sure, but they deserve some slack!

    • sturock

      Remember, Rob, Met fans are ALWAYS waiting for the other shoe to drop! ;)

    • Jacobs27

      Yes, Rob E., I think sturock’s take on the significance their being in the last World Series (see his comment on yesterday’s post) is a good one.

      It’s not in spite of their being in the WS last year, but because of it that many people so upset and negative (including myself). At least in my own case, the exasperation is part disappointment, part defense mechanism. It’s a sense of wasted opportunity and an attempt to diffuse the regret that comes with that.

      What does having faith mean for Mets fans? It’s fraught question. Mainly I think it involves being unable to stop watching and hoping against hope. But it’s a faith that’s always been compatible with criticism of the team and entertaining worst case scenarios. For good reason, really. With the exception of ’86 (and arguably ’06) the Mets are generally a pretty flawed team in one way or another, even when they’re good overall. That’s part of what makes them underdogs. And they’ve also been prone both to great collapses and would-be dynasties that never materialize. There’s a lot of deep-rooted disappointment and frustration that comes with the territory of Metsfandom.

      You think they’re basically a good team having a down year. I’m sure they’re better than they appear at the moment. But are they in fact a good team? That seemed like a lock the first month of the season and in the wake of last year’s magic. Now, I think there a growing body of reasons to doubt it, that is to doubt whether the team is well-constructed, whether they have the parts to succeed. It’s not that hard to make the case that they’re basically a .500 team that occasionally looks much better when everything goes their way.

      As sturock was saying, on the offensive side of things, there is no young core that we can count on or whose potential (still) seems exciting. Both defensive positioning and line-up construction are full of question marks and pieces that don’t fit together. The pitching staff’s projected dominance has not materialized except for deGrom.

      You’re absolutely right that they may get healthy and figure it out. Perhaps in 2017 a more polished deGrom, Thor, Matz, even Harvey and Wheeler (fingers crossed) will pitch together like we all dream that can.

      But even then, without at least a league average-type offense (as opposed to league worst) I expect the team will struggle. And for the moment at least, that kind of offense seems like a best-case scenario. That’s one of the things that has been so frustrating with the Mets this season, they seem to be continually banking on a best-case scenario with little or inadequate plans for anything else.

  • Pete In Iowa

    “They’re a good team having a down year..” Meh, not so sure about that Rob.
    As I mentioned yesterday, this club has had three truly good (regular season) months over the past two seasons. The rest of the time a .500 team (this disgusting month excepted, of course). Sadly, I think the great philosopher Bill Parcells was right when he famously said “You are what you’re record says you are..”
    Look, I’ve loved the Mets for over 50 years now, and therefore, will always have hope. But the more I keep hearing about the virtues of Flores, Lagares, Cabrera, Duda and d’Arnaud I just have to wonder. Are we really pinning our hopes on a bunch of .240, or so, hitters who consistently are inconsistent and don’t come through in the clutch? Doesn’t really seem like a recipe for consistent, long-term success to me.
    We can all grouse over poor managing, a bad front office, sickening ownership, players hurt, youngsters who have fizzled, bad knees, thumbs, necks, quads and backs but it is all white noise. We’re just not very good. Period.
    This club hasn’t won two straight in almost six weeks. Think about that. Really, think about that. It may well be the most amazin stat of them all this year and indeed in the 55 years the Metropolitans have been around.

  • Rob E.

    This team — if HEALTHY — is the same team that went on that great run, except for Walker replacing Murphy, and now Jay Bruce pushing somebody out somewhere. Health, regression, and contract situations bring with them some question marks heading into 2017 — I absolutely agree on that. But not EVERYTHING is going to turn into the worst case scenario just because we are Mets. In fact, one can argue that THIS year has been a worst-case scenario.

    Things tend to bounce back toward the norm. If you think this team REALLY TRULY sucks and they just got lucky last year, that’s your privilege. But they fixed their shit last year, the went to the World Series, and they are at .500 despite a mountain of adversity. That’s not a team that sucks to me.

    • Jacobs27

      The team definitely does *not* suck.

      Their pitching is still much better than most MLB teams, and that is definitely a saving grace. Still 3rd in ERA (if 6th in WHIP and 11th in BA against).

      The offensive is unquestionably awful, though. Even with Céspedes in there for most of the season, they’re last or near last in virtually every offensive stat except home runs. Doesn’t get much worse than this.

      Although they don’t suck, this team definitely *did* get lucky last year, in that everyone clicked all at once and Murphy suddenly became Super Murph. Doesn’t mean they didn’t earn their success last year, but it does suggest that that same group of players (minus super-Murph) can’t necessarily sustain it without help and its problems being addressed as they become clear. Many of those players are maddeningly inconsistent and some of them, like Granderson, we should fully expect to continue their decline.

      In addition, this year, although fraught with adversity, has hardly been a worst-case scenario. Consider how much better Bart has been than what the Mets could have reasonably expected from a 43-year-old? Think about getting Loney off the scrap heap when Duda went down. Great pick up, but an absolute emergency hack that has worked out. And what about Reyes still having something left in the tank? That was awfully lucky. (While him getting hurt was to be expected). Think about Familia’s save streak, Reed’s gunslinging dominance, Rene Rivera coming out of nowhere to partially fill the void left by d’Arnaud and Plawecki’s free fall. Think Walker on pace to set a career high in HR, despite his incredible streakiness. And frankly, think about Céspedes not disappointing and continuing to play above all of his career numbers before he hurt himself.

      A lot has actually gone better for this team than one might have expected. And that’s a big reason why that they’re only .500 and not worse. Just because they’ve had a lot of bad luck, doesn’t mean they aren’t lucky to be where they are, too.

  • Bob W.

    Oh, it’s over.

  • Pete In Iowa

    A .500 team doesn’t suck — they’re just, you know, mediocre.

  • Matt in Richmond

    Every team has flaws. And if you are what your record says you are, then our record says we almost won the World Series last year and are .500 while missing over half of our Opening Day lineup, our ace starter and one of our top relievers. So, that’s not too bad.

    As to this lament over the young core of up and coming hitters. You can’t have it all. Nobody can match our pitching on paper…granted, it hasn’t materialized the way we hoped this year, but there are reasons to be very confident about it going forward. And the offensive situation isn’t as bad as the uber bleak spin you are putting on it. Conforto has shown all the signs that he is legit, and once he figures it out, he should be a force. As down as everyone is on Travis right now, the reality is, he has never had a healthy season. He is just about to enter his prime years and I would like to see what he could do with a full healthy year and no more screwing around with his stance. Duda is a virtual lock for 30+ HR 90+ RBI if healthy. Bruce will be back. Lagares will be back. There’s no reason to think they can’t add a bat here or there in the offseason.

    Are there things to worry about? Absolutely. Just like there are for any organization. Are there things to be optimistic about as well? Absolutely. As usual, the truth lies somewhere in the middle. It’d be silly for me to sit here and guarantee a return to the WS next year, but it’s equally silly to call last year a fluke and proclaim this team dead in the water.

    • Jacobs27

      Wait… one of our top relievers? Am I forgetting someone? You’re not suggesting that reclamation project Jim Henderson is one of our top relievers, are you?

  • Matt in Richmond

    The guy that started the year pitching the 8th inning and had like 10 or 11 perfect outings? Yeah. He was ahead of Reed in the pecking order when he got hurt, so I suppose I am.

    • Jacobs27

      OK, I know you’re playing devil’s advocate, but c’mon, Matt. Henderson did look good at the beginning and we were all hoping he could contribute. But he was coming off a serious arm injury.

      It would have been a nice surprise if he had stayed healthy and effective. And maybe he would’ve had a better shot at it if Collins hadn’t used him so much. But it wasn’t “what’re-ya-gonna-do?” bad luck that he got hurt. It was very a significant possibility from the moment they signed him. And it’s a significant possibility now that his career as an effective reliever is over.

      Counting Jim Henderson as a key piece in your bullpen, instead of a gamble worth taking, is precisely the kind of best-case-scenario thinking that gets the Mets in trouble. Not really having a plan B for the Captain at this stage in his career is another example.

      • Matt in Richmond

        Actually all I was doing was running down the list of people we lost to injury. I’m sorry if my characterizing him as important bothered you. I didn’t mean to imply that he was the second coming of Mariano Rivera. Just an important piece. Fortunately as it turned out, late inning relief is not an area we’ve had to worry about too much, as actually the Mets did have contingency plans contrary to your statement. Robles, Reed, Blevins and Familia have all performed quite well. Henderson still could have been valuable though. Maybe our middle relief wouldn’t have been quite as soft had he been able to stay healthy.

        • Jacobs27

          Fair enough, Matt.

          For what it’s worth, I think we actually agree that Henderson was a good pick up, at least as a low-risk, high-reward option. I just wish they had leaned on him a bit less given the foreseeable fragility of his arm. They were hoping for a comeback player of the year, but they knew it wasn’t a sure thing. Given that, doesn’t it seem like a bit of a stretch to put losing “a top reliever” on a list of the adversity this team has overcome? (Even if Collins did use him liberally like a top reliever).

          But I’m sorry to belabor the point. Not essential.

  • Rob E.

    There’s this scenario where you meet a fellow Met fan at a bar and talk about the team over a few beers…we’re good here, we need to fix this, what happened to that guy. The manager sucks…but I digress…

    There is 100% negativity in many of these comments. If you go back to this blog before Cespedes got here, you’d see all the same negative comments…and the same themes: Collins sucks, the Wilpons need to sell the team, how come Sandy didn’t sign starter-caliber backups that went four deep at each position…after Cespedes got here, there was no way we were going to resign him. And they ended up in the World Series, and they ended up resigning Cespedes.

    Not every player that gets hurt stays hurt forever, not every player that regresses stays regressed, not every young pitcher gets hurt and is out of baseball by the time he’s 30, not every good player we have wants to leave. SOME do, but not ALL of them. There is an ebb & flow that ALL teams deal with. It’s never all bad, and it’s never all good. Out of the 10 playoff teams last year, only two are comfortable right now: the Cubs & Rangers. And out of the 10 teams that would be in the playoffs if the season ended today, six missed the playoffs last year. What is happening here happens to ALL teams in various ways. It’s baseball. It wasn’t all gloom & doom in 2014, it wasn’t all gloom & doom before August 1, 2015, and it’s not all gloom & doom NOW.

  • Matt in Richmond

    Bravo Rob E.

  • open the gates

    And just when you thought things couldn’t get any worse – according to some sources, Yasiel Puig may be joining us sooner than later. Anyone else looking forward to Jordany Valdespin, Part 2? Yeah, me neither.

  • Mikey

    No not puig!!! Clubhouse cancer and another outfielder

  • Steve J

    I think Puig would be a good addition. He has plenty of flaws but he’s a young talent with a rocket arm, excellent speed and a quick righthanded bat. I’ve seen him play quite a bit living in LA and he would be worth taking a chance on. He’s like Cespedes Light.

    As to clubhouse chemistry, that’s the most overrated factor in baseball. The game is an individual sport played as a team. Hating or liking a teammate can’t help when facing an opposing pitcher or hitter. The late 70s yankees brawled with one another and won plenty. Jeff Kent and Barry Bonds hated each other and had much success. The 86 Mets had plenty of animosity within the ranks. This year’s team all seems to like each other and the manager and the season is going down the drain.

  • This seems to be a case of some guy having written something of a purely speculative nature and now it passes for a rumor.

    • Jacobs27

      Maybe someone should float the rumor that Mets are going to demote Flores to make room for DFA’d Carlos Gomez. So then when it’s revealed as false, Wilmer can go on another tear and hit some walk-off home runs.

      Hey, it worked once, right?

  • Lenny65

    The 2016 Mets are the equivalent of getting in a car accident on the way to the dentist to fix the tooth you chipped when your drunken sister-in-law fell over and knocked you down while you were on the way to the toilet because that potato salad that was out in the sun all day wasn’t sitting quite right which was the day after your goldfish all died when the power went out during that storm that sent a tree limb through your bedroom window while you were waiting in line at the pharmacy to get the prescription salve you needed for that horrible butt rash you’ve been battling. Only they’re less fun. I can’t even blame anyone at this point other than those horrible monsters who insisted that NY needed NL baseball again. Where have you gone, Timo Perez? A lonely Mets nation turns its one good eye toward you. Boo-hoo-hoo.

  • Greg Mitchell

    You missed the real just-when-you-think-things-couldn’t get worse….Wheeler sent to Dr. Andrews today. Another Collins casualty (led league in pitches thrown, most them stressful, at age 24).

    But hey, Terry, keep sending Verrett out there for another start (5.36 era). And great job by Sandy picking up an obvious 5th starter. I remember some here hailing Niese pickup as possible 5th starter and lefty reliever. How’s that working out?

    But there are plenty of lefty hitting rightfielders still out there. We could use a couple more. Maybe Ichiro?

  • LeClerc

    Friday Night Report:

    Verrett/Collins: 8 Mets: 6

    Let Logan join the gang in Vegas. Let’s give Ynoa a shot.

  • Mezz 14, Row 3

    Thank God no one has mentioned A-Rod!