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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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The Last Welcome Intrusion

Midweek afternoons were not made for watching baseball, which is why when the two get together, their appeal is so undeniable. Today was the final time in 2010 you needed several hours in the middle of your weekday to fully enjoy your Mets. Twenty-two games remain, some of them in weekend daylight, the rest commencing as the sun goes down. None will intrude on your midweek afternoons.

Too bad. It’s not necessarily convenient, but what a welcome intrusion the weekday day game always is. Don’t you love that your favorite thing can just happen in the middle of a Wednesday? Maybe you can’t give it your full attention, maybe you wind up missing the whole thing, but whatever you derive from it is unlike anything you get from most of your normal day-to-day machinations. For that matter, a Mets-Nationals game on the afternoon of September 8 is going to top the same contest if it were being held at night. At night, a September showdown between the fourth-place Mets and the fifth-place Nats, even one the Mets win, dares you to ignore it. During the day, though…that’s a day game. The Mets are playing a day game? That’s right! Man, I gotta check the score! Who’s pitching again?

It isn’t much, this last chunk of 2010 Mets baseball, but its status as better than nothing peaks on a day when it wanders into your afternoon, as if it made an appointment with you months ago. You work during the day. You go to school during the day. You have things to do during the day. Yet Mets baseball has decided to inflict itself upon your routine. You let it in, and for a little while the end of the season doesn’t loom. For a little while, it’s still summer. There’s still the sense it won’t get dark early and it won’t be cold soon. It’s baseball outside during the day, just like it was when you first encountered it in the street or on the playground or in your imagination.

Midweek afternoons were not made for watching baseball. But maybe they should’ve been.

5 comments to The Last Welcome Intrusion

  • Chuck

    I was eating a late lunch when I realized the game was on. It was like receiving an unexpected gift. The win was like unwrapping the gift and discovering it is almost what you wanted. Close enough to make you smile but not enough to get you jumping up and down.

  • Was a time when all there was was matinee baseball. I won’t go into all the used to be world that no one has time to consider any more, but I will say that I feel like I lost out a little this year by not getting to a midweek day game. I would wager the world would be a better place if more teams had Friday afternoon games. Now that’s a way to start a weekend. It’s the one thing the Cubs have been getting right since 1871.

    • oldtimebaseball

      Midweek day games were a chance to take the day off and take in a ball game. Nothing better! Unless, of course, you were a kid and taking the day off from school. Play hooky? Moi?

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  • Guy Kipp

    Luis Castillo said he skipped the trip to Walter Reed Hospital because he doesn’t like to see people with no arms and no legs.

    You know, I don’t like seeing second basemen with no range and no heart, either.