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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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Almost Again

Amid the myriad personnel moves the Mets have made this year, it’s easy to overlook the contributions of three players in particular. Dale Late has put his stamp on the starting rotation; Buck Short has become a presence in the middle of the order; and before being relegated to part-time duty, Mo Mentum looked to be a real factor. Indeed, the Mets were ultimately defined in their Saturday night game against the Yankees by the actions of the aforementioned trio.

Dale Late wasn’t sharp early, and allowed the Mets to fall behind by a substantial margin, but then he found his groove and gave the Mets enough innings to call it a good start.

Buck Short loomed as a threat all night, particularly as the Mets threatened to retake the lead they’d battled so hard to take after trailing, but his last big swing came up a little shy of making the crucial difference.

Mo Mentum? Frankly, I thought this might be the night we’d see Mo Mentum earn an everyday slot, but I’m sure those who analyze and strategize have their reasons for keeping Mo Mentum from really developing into the kind of player who can help the Mets sustain consistent winning.

As it was, there were several players who came through and kept the Mets in the game, but in the end, the club came up a day late, a buck short and had no momentum, falling, 8-7. Each of the Mets’ last eight losses has been by one run, coinciding with the additions of Late and Short to their roster and the subtraction of Mentum from their lineup.


Prior to Saturday night’s game, Citi Field hosted what appeared to be thoughtful and well-done ceremonies to commemorate the twentieth anniversary of the September 11 attacks (“appeared,” because Fox kept cutting away from the ceremonies in order to yap and advertise). Manager Bobby Valentine, first base coach Mookie Wilson and eleven members of the 2001 Mets were on hand, as were hundreds of people with a specific connection to the events, aftermath and ongoing commemoration of 9/11. The current Mets broke out special home white NEW YORK jerseys to emphasize their bond with the city; wore the caps of the FDNY, the NYPD, the PAPD, the Department of Sanitation and the Department of Correction to honor those who gave so totally of themselves in the wake of the tragedy; and lined up alongside their interborough rivals to stress two opposing sides can sometimes come together. Even a person who isn’t particularly excited to see another New York team visit Queens under any circumstance considered it a nice touch.

The pregame production echoed that of the first game back at Shea Stadium in September of 2001 as well as the tenth-anniversary remembrance of September 2011. When it comes to reaching out to their community, the Mets organization indeed never forgets.

10 comments to Almost Again

  • Harvey Poris

    Once again, Rojas mismanaged the bullpen. Lugo pitches the 7th and gets the Yankees out on about 7 pitches. But Rojas takes him out for May Who promptly blows the game in the 8th.

    One-time Brooklyn manager Charlie Dressen used to tell his team in late, close games to hold them there, he’ll think of something. With the Mets losing something like 13 of the last 14 1-run games, Rojas usually thinks of the wrong thing.

  • eric1973

    “clerical error, corrected in luis’ case.”

    Actually, MikeL, it appears that the hiring of Luis Rojas appears to be a clerical error as well, one soon to be corrected.

    Certainly, we needed a fresh arm in there, in the most important game of the year. Rojas thought Lugo would end up looking like Bill Lee, after that dustup with Nettles, if he had pitched another inning.

    • mikeL

      let’s hope so eric.

      i was really surprised to see may in there and not loup …i thought maybe hand wasn’t available, but no he appeared in the 8th, sharp, and apparently saved by luis for after the lead was lost. by bad defense from the guy the fox-heads gushed endlessly about – “best hand-to-eye coordination in the majors” ….except apparently when he’s flat-footed.
      we all could have used an incedulous keith right about then…

      it had been interesting when pillaRBI liner was followed buy MISjudged deep fly…but yes mo mentum seems not to play with (for) this team.

      and thus to ljcmets point: yes, what a great opportunity was lost to have the two NYC broadcast teams working in tandem on a special night.

  • ljcmets

    I had hoped that SNY or WPIX – or just about anyone other than Fox – had the rights to the pre-game, but no, Fox it was. Their coverage infuriated me ( I intentionally didn’t tune into whatever Fox News was doing at Citi Field prior to that). First, we were treated to the inanities of A-rod, Thomas and whoever was anchoring. Papi was at least somewhat interesting, having lived and played through the aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombing, but why not just let the story tell itself, without endless interruptions? If I recall correctly, whatever outlet held the Mets contract 20 years ago let pre-game events on the field unfold without any commentary. The tone deafness of Fox, which kept trying to insert itself into this uniquely New York story, was grating. Apparently the inherent drama and emotion of Mets/Yankees on the 20th anniversary of 9/11 wasn’t interesting enough for Fox.

    Fox did slightly better during the game itself. The interviews were with relevant individuals and charity representatives that basically deserved to be there, and the game provided enough content to hold interest. Right up until Joe Buck showed film of his father speaking after 9/11 and felt it appropriate to spend time on air telling a story about said speech. I’m sure Jack Buck was a wonderful guy, especially to his son, but it had nothing to do with the events of 20 years ago or last night. Finally, the broadcast crew had to spend some time telling us what a wonderful, philanthropic network they work for and the large donation it had just made to one of the charities; Buck made sure we all knew he himself intended to donate to the cause. He stated on air that he hoped he wasn’t being “self-serving;” well Joe, indeed you were.

    None of this surprised me. I was so disappointed when I found out Fox had this game, as I remember how the Fox broadcast did not even bother to call Alonso’s historic 53rd, record-breaking homer as it was happening, briefly interrupted the irrelevant interview it was running over the action, and returned immediately to that interview, giving Pete and Mets fans no emotional content whatsoever. This was a game between the two NYC teams in NYC commemorating the horrible – and subsequently inspiring – events in NYC in September 2001. Fox should never have been allowed near this game. What would have served it far better was a simulcast on SNY and YES with rotating teams of familiar announcers – GKR matched up with the YES regulars to call the game in tandem and to shut up during the pre-game. That would have mirrored what the teams did on the field, held focus on the New York character of the action, and showed unity and purpose.

    Oh, the game? Ride or Die with Baez, I guess..

    • Henry J Lenz

      I agree with most of your post. Especially the fractured pregame coverage. However, I worked with Jack Buck a million times and I know and like Joe. Jack announced Mookie’s grounder on CBS Radio (I was in the Mets dugout at the time) and I thought it was ok to have his speech in there. Just wish Ron & Keith were out on the field too.

  • greensleeves

    He taketh WAY more than he giveth. The wild swings. The countless K’s. The wild throws delivering unearned, winning runs. The picked-offs, the tiresome ‘tude.
    I’ll give you the acrobatic slides and the (mostly) solo bombs –but there’s nothing magic about all the rest. A born again Narcissus sees only himself in Flushing Bay. Tally it up, it ain’t a wash.

  • open the gates

    Nicely done. I could add: It doesn’t help that their front office includes Manager Early Hook; Acting General Manager Buzz Driver; and Team President Tay Lend, which would also describe the current position of his career arc.

  • Eric

    The Yankees’ 8th run hurt. One Gold Glover couldn’t handle a hot shot and the other Gold Glover couldn’t throw the ball to 1st base. Teams the Mets are chasing lost and the Mets just chopped another day off the calendar. Tragic number getting close.

    This is the same Mets team that was gifted an improbable opportunity the last weekend of last season to win into the playoffs and lost into last place instead.

  • open the gates

    Welcome to NY, Francisco Lindor. All is forgiven.