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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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Hail the Conquering Red Sox

A happy and healthy Elimination Day to you and yours. Some sects observe this most joyous holiday as part of a larger Autumnal Festival of Sheadenfreude, a vicarious celebration of the October shortcomings of others near and not so dear to us, recognizing as sacred blessed events emanating from outcomes directly demoralizing a plurality of parishioners in Washington, Philadelphia or, as is merrily the case this year, Atlanta. In ancient times, the ritual reveling in the baseball misfortune of others extended as far west as St. Louis. I understand some orthodox practitioners of the faith still symbolically re-enact the Smiting of the Cardinals by taking out chicken from Popeyes while directing epithets toward Whitey Herzog. They get some looks from the cashier, but their hearts are surely pure.

No matter how pious or secular, observance of Elimination Day is a personal matter, yet it seems only proper for one and all to express a Green Monster-sized thank you to our spiritual brethren the Boston Red Sox for making its arrival timely and definitive. A shoutout of gratitude as well to those Mets fans who visited Fenway Park in September and strongly suggested defeating the New York Yankees in the American League Division Series would be an excellent way to consecrate the 2018 postseason. Perhaps the 108-win Red Sox would have figured it out for themselves, but a little amen corner of “YANKEES SUCK” coming from a third party never hurts.

Congratulations as well to our fraternal twins, the transplanted and better off for it Houston Astros, who were poised to serve as our backstop and failsafe had anything gone awry in the Northeastern portion of the ALDS. The former Colt .45s — sired, like us, by a Senior Circuit expansion decision 58 falls ago — were poised to tie up any loose ends that would have dangled over October and made it a messier month than necessary. Because it hasn’t happened in so long, you might not remember what New York can be like when the Yankees qualify for never mind prevail in the World Series. It wasn’t pretty then, it wouldn’t have been pretty now. Huzzah for the Houstonians even as we send our best to the Bostonians. Either one will make a formidable opponent for the winner of the National League tournament, which has thus far produced an appealing finalist from the Team We Don’t Mind bracket (Milwaukee over Colorado) to go up against an appalling combatant from the Team We Can’t Stand side of the board (Los Angeles over aforementioned Atlanta; too bad the Braves and Dodgers both couldn’t lose).

Once the local baseball postseason was resolved to the satisfaction of decent folk from Toms River to Riverhead, the New York Metropolitan Area’s major sports league championship drought reached 2,437 days, the driest it’s been in these parts since our forebears waited on John McGraw’s Giants to reclaim their throne nearly a century ago. We can handle our one-ninth share of the civic shame, grateful that the streak was not snapped by the most overbearing hands imaginable. Maybe Super Bowl LIII will represent our regional salvation. Perhaps lightning in an NHL or NBA bottle will be captured come June. As long as we’re dreaming, Next October in Flushing sounds ideal.

Until then, we are simply thankful for the blessings bestowed by an expeditious Elimination Day. Dodgers at Brewers; Red Sox at Astros; Yankees at liberty. We’re Mets fans. We’ll take what we can get.

28 comments to Hail the Conquering Red Sox

  • chuck

    Hey, I’m surprised you didn’t mention Angle Hernandez, whose gross incompetence was on nationwide display the last two nights. After Monday night’s game, where he was challenged four times and overruled three, I thought “Greg’s going have a field day with this.”

    • Angel Hernandez did much wrong in this series as he does in every series, but ultimately he didn’t get in the way. He, like the team the Red Sox eliminated, can go home now.

      • chuck

        Oh, ok. You’re most welcome to edit or delete it if you want.

        I fear we now have a Supreme Court filled with Angel Hernandezes, Richie Garcias, and Augie Donatellis.

        And I need a proofreader. Potter Stewart.

  • 9th string catcher

    It’s the most wonderful time of the year…

  • dmg

    Elimination Day is certainly the most dependably festive feature of my sporting calendar. I note that it came earlier this year than many expected!

  • chuck

    Oh, and a side note:

    Today marks the 45th anniversary of the Mets winning the 1973 NLCS and the resignation of Spiro Agnew, both of which were relayed to Supreme Court Justice Potter Steward by his law clerk Andrew Hurwitz. One of Hurwitz’ notes was incorrectly reported by Bob Woodward in his book The Bretheren, and repeated by George Will in Men at Work, as having said “Kranepool flies to right. Agnew Resigns.”

    I tried emailing Woodward to ask how he got it wrong, but never got a reply.

  • InsidePitcher

    Amen!

  • Tim H

    I was there in 1973 and had seats in the last row of the Upper Deck, directly behind home plate. From that dead-center angle, I took three quick photos of the crowd storming the field. It was perfectly symmetrical. A short time later, I was on the field, too. (Also made it on the field after the first NL East “title” and NL pennant wins in 1969 — each after working the games as a Shea Stadium vendor.)

    Re the 1973 game: The scoreboard stated that VP Spiro Agnew had pleaded “nolo contendere” (a phrase .001% of those in attendance understood). Maybe that’s why, for the last 44 years I have pursued a career as a law librarian!

    Amazin’ memories!

    • chuck

      1973 was really a great season. I was 11, but I remember them coming back from multiple injuries and putting together a September drive.

      Another side note: Yesterday was both the birth and death days of Bob Moose. I saw his September 20, 1969 no-hitter. First game I ever attended. Roberto Clemente stole a home run from, I believe, Wayne Garrett.

      • Tim H

        Bob Moose’s no-hitter versus the Mets remains the only one I have ever witnessed live. I was a vendor during the 1969-70 seasons, so I only spent the last couple of innings that day actually aware of a possible no-hitter, since I had to sell my hot dogs. A couple of months earlier, Tom Seaver’s near-perfect game versus the Cubs was famously broken up after one out in the ninth inning by rookie utilityman Jimmy Qualls.

        Of course, the resilient Mets, just four days after Moose’s gem, won the first ever National League East “title” on their way to the World Championship.

        Rest in peace, Bob Moose.

  • Kevin From Flushing

    Exhale!

  • Ken K. in NJ

    Sorry, but the Brewers are not in my “Team We Don’t Mind” category, not as long as they still have that lawyered up f*ckhead Ryan Braun on the team (somewhat ameliorated by the fact that they now also have Curtis Granderson).

    • Uecker + Granderson > Braun.

      The overarching joy of this postseason, prior to Elimination Day, has been listening to Ueck call these games over Brewers radio. Would love to follow him into the World Series.

      • mikeski

        Brewers > Dodgers.

        • chuck

          I still can’t forgive Bud Selig for not being able to go to the bathroom without Jerry Reinsdorf’s say so, and nearly killing baseball. So I’ll be uncharacteristically supporting the AL team this year. Now that we know us reasonable New Yorkers will be left in peace this winter.

  • Jacobs27

    Hallelujah!

  • Dave

    It’s so nice to be able to get past the “Go Team Not Called the Yankees” stage of the postseason, although after the drubbing they took the other night, even their most shameless boneheaded media cheerleaders (channel 4’s buffoon Bruce Beck for example) must have been hard-pressed to muster up any optimism.

    But also, go team that doesn’t have Chase Utley even on its healthy scratch roster.

  • Mark Mehler

    Another side note re: 10/10/73. While the Mets played their way in and Agnew played his way out, I and my editorial colleagues were being evacuated by NYPD from the office building we shared with El Al. Another Yom Kippur War bomb scare.

  • Bob

    The joy of seeing the skankees eliminated like a bad bowel movement in their own billion-dollar sewer makes me very happy!
    At least 2018 has another positive in a season of not so many positives for Mets fans!

    Ah-Spiro- Agnew-the nattering nabob of negativism……another bowel movement now flushed.

  • eric1973

    Unadulterated Joy!

    Columbus Day and Elimination Day — two great Holidays in the same week!

  • Left Coast Jerry

    Looking for a Brewers-Astros World Series. The only two teams that have switched leagues in the last 100 years.

  • Gil

    I like CC and was hoping for a game 5 in Boston that the sox would have won, but hey, I’m not writing the script.

    MLB is running a pretty cool short video series called 31 days in October where they post a video on each day of the month with something historic that happened on that day. Johnny Bench hitting an oppo tater to knot it up against the Pirates in the 9th inning of game 5 was today’s video (they won on a wild pitch), and yesterdays video was Collins talking about Chase Utley breaking RT’s leg.

    I miss 2015.

  • dmg

    a day later and i’m still in the YE buzz!

  • LeClerc

    Three cheers for Ron Darling’s perceptive remarks about Luis “what time does the game start?” Severino.

    Sour Grapes Department: Bunt-phobic CC blames poor old visually challenged Angel Hernandez for Sabathia’s mediocre pitching performance.