The blog for Mets fans
who like to read


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.

Got something to say? Leave a comment, or email us at (Sorry, but we have no interest in ads, sponsored content or guest posts.)

Need our RSS feed? It's here.

Visit our Facebook page, or drop by the personal pages for Greg and Jason.

Or follow us on Twitter: Here's Greg, and here's Jason.

Getting Ready

Ah, Day One. As my partner noted, it was a bunch of sweet nothing.
I had the game on at work and so was only paying fitful, vague attention — which was fine because this was, after all, a spring-training game.
By now I'm used to this. About 10 years ago, it was different. I remember one year in the late 1990s the first spring-training game came on a Saturday afternoon in March. I woke up early (this was before I was a dad, so if I saw the early side of noon on a weekend morning I felt virtuous and superior all day) and by mid-morning I was so hyped up that I went out and did errands, something that normally I would actively avoid unless I had nothing to wear or eat or was about to be divorced or set upon by bill collectors. (See “before I was a dad,” above.) After doing all the errands I could think of (and inventing some new ones), I bought all the papers, came home, read all the interchangeable spring-training articles and then hopped up and down on the couch for the half-hour or so I had to kill until finally the telecast started, complete with the crate of oranges being opened and the sight of Fran and Ralph in Floridawear.
And by the top of the second I was flipping through the Real Estate section.
Hey, it's spring training for everybody. As Emily noted during the Fry family's brief TiVo rebroadcast for Joshua's benefit (he didn't pay much attention either, though he did recognize Jose Reyes and let out a cheer), if you make it to October you have to pay laser-like attention to every pitch, so it's hard to dial it up on the last day of February. This is a marathon, not a sprint — heck, compared with baseball season a marathon's just a day you decided to run around. It isn't like football, with just 16 afternoons plus whatever the playoff gods give you. It's 162 games with hope for 11 to 19 more, and an overly long preseason. That's 200-odd games at three or four hours a pop. Pace yourself.
I was happy just to have my left ear filled with announcer burble and the thwack of bats and the clapping of a small Florida crowd. Day One being Day One, even Oliver Perez's less-than-marvelous work summoned a nicely familiar feeling. When the first Tiger run scored, I felt a twinge and recognized it at once: It was the nose-wrinkle of annoyance at an early run you know you have plenty of time to get back and therefore have no reason to get too concerned about — quite a different thing than the wince and expletive of a seventh-inning run in a tie game, or the gut punch of the extra-inning run that beats you, or any kind of enemy run in October. Feeling it and registering it was the fan equivalent of the first curve ball broken off or the first time bringing the bat 90% of the way across the plate but not breaking your wrists. OK, got it. That still works.
It being spring training and all, I guess we have to give today's uniforms a mulligan, too. By now the sight of a new, hide-your-face hideous Mets spring-training uniform is as routine as the first batch of crocuses, so on the one hand it was good to see regular-season unis there on the TV. On the other hand, it's not the regular season. Regulation gear in Florida? That's Yankee stuff. (If we've done this in previous years — or in every year — forgive an old man's failing memory. I'm sure I hated it then too and will complain about it again in 2008.) And our sartorial misstep wasn't even as bad as Detroit's. Not only are those Tigers hats appalling, what with the little above-the-ear crescent of white, but every schoolkid knows the Tigers wear an orange D on the road, not a white one. That's one of the great uniform traditions of baseball, and some MLB doofuses failed to honor it. I know every team is stuck with similar hats this year, and I've long since given up complaining about the churning out of new baseball things to buy at the mall, but if MLB must foist junk on us, it could at least not be careless about it. They couldn't make crappy caps with orange crescents?
Oh well. It's spring training. Getting mildly exercised about it is all I can manage. Because like I said, I'm pacing myself.
Addendum: Next Wednesday March 7, it's Faith and Fear Live! No, we're not live-blogging a spring-training game or anything. (That would be ridiculous.) We'll be reading at Varsity Letters, the monthly sportswriting event hosted by Gelf Magazine's Carl Bialik. The night's other readers will be True Hoop's Henry Abbott; the Dugout's Jon Bois, Nick Dallamora and Brandon Stroud; Deadspin's Will Leitch; Dan Shanoff of eponymous sitedom; and With Leather's Matt Ufford. If you're in or near New York City (or have a sudden urge to visit), please come cheer us on and/or laugh after we fall on our faces. Admission is free; full details are right here.

6 comments to Getting Ready

  • Anonymous

    did you see the guy with the red and white yankee getup behind home? what gives? legends field all sold out already?
    it's never too early for off-color yankee jokes, i guess.

  • Anonymous

    Ahh, spring… but since love is for suckers, the only other thing to hope for is baseball! I've been to Paris, and it thoroughly lived down to it's stereotype. Baseball much, much better.

  • Anonymous

    I'm going to enjoy an embarrassment of TV riches today… a double helping of Good vs. Evil, Love vs. Hate:
    Mets vs. Cards
    Twins vs. Skanks

  • Anonymous

    C'mon, tell me you didn't get a charge out of Gary announcing “Mets baseball is on the air!”? I let out a little yelp.
    Is it just me, or were there way too many people applauding Tiger achievements?

  • Anonymous

    Bogus. But that's what happens when you're a league champion.
    Unless they were applauding the results of the 2006 ALDS. In which case, OK then…

  • Anonymous

    I know I was.