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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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Citi Field is beginning to grow on me. The Mets are beginning to feel like fungus.

Spent a lovely afternoon in Section 509, my favorite section to date. First spot I've sat where at least 95% of the field was available to me. Crisp but not uncomfortable weather for Weather Education Day. My buddy Rich made his CF debut, his first retro park appearance of any kind. Yes, we agreed, afterwards: this was definitely a Retropolitan type of outing. The Mets have been playing like this more often than not since 1962.

What can you do with a game in which Santana is plenty good (if not otherworldly), we get twice our daily allotment of triples, a disputed home run call goes our way and we are presented with a surprise (shocking, really) appearance by the backup catcher at the very last minute? You can win, but the Mets refuse to not lose. Intimidating AC/DC fanfare notwithstanding, J.J. Putz failed to leave the Marlins thunderstruck. His post-Johan performance was disappointing and ultimately fatal, but he merely picked up the smoking gun. The culprits who killed today's chances all carried bats, particularly when there were runners on base.

And hoo boy, were there runners on base.

The chicken nachos, the gentle sunshine and the company, planned and otherwise (I've been fortunate to run into some very nice FAFIF readers every game I've gone this homestand), made it too nice a day to complain virulently or send up distress signals. Indeed, Rich thinks it's too early to push the panic button. Me, I think Citi Field should stock the cupholders with emergency flares, but maybe he's right. The Mets had an afternoon game like this last May: midweek, hopeful and eventually futile. We lost it by one run. We missed the playoffs by one game. But it wasn't the end of 2008, just as this, despite our ugly 9-12 mark, wasn't the end of 2009.

Merely a discouraging continuation of everything we've seen.

If you're not going to push the panic button, at least click on Faith and Fear in Flushing: An Intense Personal History of the New York Mets, available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble or a bookstore near you. Keep in touch and join the discussion on Facebook.

Meanwhile, a Mariners fan says Mets fans will love the book…even if Mariners fans will only like it.

15 comments to Thundersuck

  • Anonymous

    Pathetic all around. Glad you managed to have a 'good time' in all the other aspects excepting the late innings on the field. I thought about going, but ultimately decided my NJ unemployment check might be better spent elsewhere for now.

  • Anonymous

    Glad to hear that you're beginning to enjoy Citi Field. If only we could get a team that can actually play there and win.
    Please someone, anyone, explain to me how this team cannot find the motivation to go out there and beat the Florida Marlins. They knocked them out of the playoffs not once, but twice. How can the Mets not step up their game a few notches against them?
    This is a heartless, gutless and ultimately a spineless team. They've changed managers; still they play listless baseball. They've changed closers; still they play lethargic, apathetic baseball. What is it going to take for these guys to win? What is it going to take for them to start playing like they actually want to win? How many times must we fans be subjected to the same embarrassing and futile effort?
    I don't want to hate my Mets. I really don't. I want to see them win. And if they must lose, I want to see them at least genuinely put all their effort into at least trying to win. I don't believe that's too much to ask, especially since they have the third-highest payroll in baseball. Can they please play not only to earn their keep but also to at least try and win a freaking ballgame?

  • Anonymous

    We're getting perilously close to the Doomsday Scenario. Step one: Nationals continue to lose (and, really, this is ah, how you say, “lead pipe cinch”. I mean Sunday aside, have you SEEN this team?). Step 2: Manny Acta is fired. Step 3: I can't bring myself to describe step 3, since it involves the Mets losing far beyond 2009, but you get the idea.

  • Anonymous

    First, Greg, just finished the book …. in one word, AMAZIN'. Thank you.
    Unfortunately, the joy of reading Faith and Fear late into the night has only reminded me, over and over again, how our current team should be ashamed of itself. Not because they are losing (Mets fans are used to that), not because the face of the franchise is in a horrendous slump that is feeding on itself (I have faith that Mr. Wright will snap out of it and revert to his usual self) but because this team just has no heart.
    They play like they don't care and THAT is what is unacceptable to me as a Mets fan. I can handle the losing (it just makes winning that much sweeter). I can handle my team not living up to expectations (that's par for the course). But I cannot stand players not sliding (yes, Mr. Beltran, I'm talking to you), not hustling (Mr. Reyes) or simply not showing up (Ollie).
    This team needs a major league shake-up, and I'm not talking about firing the manager (okay, I think they need a different manager, but that's not enough to right the ship). Maybe the trade of one of the stars will scare the bejeesuz out of these guys and make them realize that they are accountable and nobody is untouchable. This team, as presently constituted, is something that hurts more than anything …. hard to like.

  • Anonymous

    Sometimes a “crazy” sounding trade will actually wake a team up. Witness the Red Sox disposing of Nomar and winning a championship immediately afterwards. Can you really say it was Nomar that was the obstacle? Probably not, but trading him constituted an un-obstacle, if that makes any sense.
    If there's any comfort here, it's that they can't possibly LOB at the current rate all year. Putz and Green pretty well stunk up the joint the last two days — neither one has ever been the second coming of John Wetteland, although they're an improvement over the rag arms they replaced — but really they shouldn't have been in a position to make the difference. Certainly not against a Hanley-less school of Fish.

  • Anonymous

    am i the only one who occasionally finds myself subconsciously rooting against these guys? it's disturbing,
    also, fire jerry. omir santos pinch hitting? indefensible.

  • Anonymous

    The team has no dept,no leaders, and frankly no direction…And while all kinds of shit is going on with me on a subconscious level- I cant root against them..
    Rich P

  • Anonymous

    For once I'd love to see some accountability with this team. I don't want to hear Wright talking about how the “other guys are making good pitches” or Jerry saying he saw some positives in whatever previous disastrous loss we're dealing with. The cliches and the politically correct answers need to go. Someone needs to call someone else out. Someone needs to stand up and say what the hell is wrong with you guys, we are better than this. This “we'll go out there and get them tomorrow” attitude has destroyed them the last 2 seasons.
    God I miss 2006.

  • Anonymous

    No sack.

  • Anonymous

    As I watch MLB Network (aka the greatest TV station in history) every night, I see teams rallying, I see clutch base hits, I see players of both notable pedigree and not doing all sorts of cool things. All except one team.
    As the saying goes, you can't trade the whole team. And despite the baying of the morons, you're not trading Wright or Reyes, and you certainly wouldn't get equal value if you did. I wish there was some hardass veteran leader Hernandez-type we could acquire who could fire the club up, but I don't know who that is or where we'd put him.
    That leaves one thing. I've been unimpressed with Jerry all along. He's made numerous questionable moves for a year now. And just as it was with Willie, we're supposed to overlook them because he relates to the players, he motivates them. And just like it was with Willie, he's not. I know, Jerry can't make Wright get a hit in the ninth or throw strikes for Putz. But the team is flat, listless, fundamentally lousy. After three steady-handed, even-keeled players pals, we need a firebrand to run this team (since we're evidently not getting on on the field). I want crazy-ass Wally Backman.

  • Anonymous

    I wish there was some hardass veteran leader Hernandez-type we could acquire who could fire the club up, but I don't know who that is or where we'd put him.

    He's currently the 2B in Chavez Ravine…

  • Anonymous

    3 things that made the game all-the-worse:
    1. Knowing we were going to lose after the Marlins took the 8th inning lead (hell, I knew after the 2 leadoff walks)–and continuing to torture myself by watching and hoping anyway.
    2. Going through the motions with other Met fans at work, watching the 9th on TV, while other co-workers who root for the MFY, Cubs, and Phillies asked us questions like, “How do you know Wright's going to strike out? Why are you sure they're going to lose? Don't you have faith in this team?” SHUT UP. We watch this team, not you, so we know better. Don't criticize us.
    3. JJ after the game, putting salt in the wounds: “walking the leadoff hitter is always disasterous, nevermind the first two hitters…” Well JJ, apparently it's not always disasterous, particularly if you have a 9.39 era coming in.

  • Anonymous

    Something about always agreeing with everyone here makes all of this that much more depressing. i wrote about santana this morning, and how the only explanation is that the mets hate him. it's in jest, but, really, it's…ugh, it almost not even worth the energy to complain anymore. and speaking of lack of fire, sack, whatever else…wanna get really annoyed? watch '86 Year to Remember video as i did just to torture myself a few days back. guys barrelling over catchers. fights at third. fist-pumping everywhere. celebrations at home that didn't involve walk-offs. that's what championship teams are like. that's what REAL teams are like. this bunch is not a team, they're not winners, and, frankly, there's nothing particularly rewarding in any way about watching them.

  • Anonymous

    And the only reason I don't shout “Trade 'em all?”
    It's not because we wouldn't receive “equal value” in return…
    It's not because most of these guys are “our guys,” our own homegrown talent…
    It's not for any sentimental attachment to anyone…
    It's simply because once they're outta herre, they'll kick the shit out of us when they come back to play us, looking most sackish, quite energetic & highly motivated.

  • Anonymous

    Come to think of it Greg- I do wonder what I will eat the next time I go to CF!!
    God almighty I'm thinking more about the fish&shrimp combo than my ball club..
    I feel home sick- and really 9.50 for an eggplant parm hero?
    Rich P