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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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Love and a #45

Don't talk to me about 2008. Don't even talk to me about August. Because I'm not hearing it. Instead, hear this:

Pedro Jaime Martinez is one hell of a pitcher.

I know, this isn't news to any of us. I remember living in fear of him the night Matt Franco ruined his masterpiece, watching in awe as he and the Antichrist tangled on Memorial Day Weekend a couple of years back, seeing him no-hit the Indians in relief with not much more than half a shoulder, a head full of brains and enough guts to launch his own Normandy invasion. But there's a difference between knowing and seeing, between catching ESPN highlights and the occasional Sunday-night game and seeing him every fourth/fifth day. (As much of the latter as possible, though. Please Willie.) To steal from Reggie Jackson, he's so good that people blinded by Cablevision stay home to hear him pitch.

Tonight he beat the Marlins with a Heilmanesque fastball — while the change and breaking stuff seemed good, basically he beat them from the neck up. And though things got silly early once Leiter spat the bit (OK, “projectile-vomited the bit” is more like it), he sure didn't sound like a pitcher pitching with a huge lead. When Dontrelle Willis came up as a pinch-hitter in the third, I expected some showmanship and leaned toward the radio in anticipation. Silly me: While yes, the D-Train was swinging for the downs, Pedro derailed him with an 0-2 changeup, which reminded me that this was not playtime. Who knows, maybe he'll drill Lenny Harris for that cheap-ass bunt single.

Pedro returned us to the back pages? I didn't care so much about that — the Mets occupy my personal front pages 365 days a year. He helped bring Carlos Beltran here? Maybe, but I always thought that was more marketing than causality. This is inarguable: We were 0-5, naked in the heart of Fannypack Nation, watching Smoltz bulleting fastballs and ungodly breaking stuff, and staring at the prospect of a soul-killingly ugly home opener before a panic-stricken fan base. And he made it all go away, keeping us nose to nose with Smoltz until the hitters could find themselves and put things right. And since then, things haven't been perfect, but they've been a whole lot more right than wrong.

Mi nombre es Pedro? I wouldn't dare to presume. I'm just glad he's on our side.

Miscellaneous: I don't know where the Daily News got Adam Rubin, but they ought to go back there and look for more like him. The guy's had great stories all year. Today brought a terrific rundown of Heath Bell's struggles with his own organization, as dingbat Met doctors wouldn't listen to him when his arm felt wrong and his velocity would fluctuate wildly. When he finally got an MRI it turned out he had a broken bone in his forearm. Oops! Last year's doctors, well, they battled. If tomorrow night a foul ball clocks me in the head and the EMTs say they're taking me to NYU Medical Center, do me a favor and immediately beat me to death with a chunk of the Nickelodeon edifice. It'll be much simpler.

Miscellaneous II: Mike Cameron referred to the Mets' decision on what to do with Victor Diaz as “totally an up-top kind of move.” Yo. Midnight may not be able to swing a bat, but he's still cool.

Miscellaneous III: Another one from the Times Have Changed Department — didja catch Cliff Floyd stealing with a six-run lead and Pedro on the mound? Apparently chin music really is a thing of the past. To quote the bracelet around Tim McCarver's wrist, WWBGD?

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