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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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First, We Take Miami

If you want to swim with the sharks, you’ve got to learn to outlast the Marlins. Or something like that. And son of a Rich Renteria, Monday night we sure as Orestes Destrade did.

On the twentieth anniversary plus one day of the evening Anthony Young didn’t just not lose to but actually won against then-expansion then-Florida, the 2013 Mets unbaned their existence by not just not losing but actually winning in Miami.

Will wonders ever cease? Well, perhaps by tonight we shall find out that they do. But for the time being, we are riding a one-game unbeaten streak at Monstrosity Park, not letting a game that was getting away fully get away, not allowing a tying run to tie it up in the ninth, not permitting a save situation to get blown to lime green smithereens.

I watched the Mets build a lead, fall behind, surge ahead and then not get caught, yet I couldn’t tell you how it happened. Sure, I could throw names like Marlon Byrd, Bobby Parnell and Ike Davis (IKE DAVIS?) at you and elaborate on their roles in the 6-5 victory, but that doesn’t explain what in the name of Bret Barberie transpired to reroute the Mets’ road to ruin.

Our boys had prepared a trap door for themselves in the ninth. Two were out. Two were on. Giancarlo Stanton was up. The Mets, improbably ahead by one, were about to slide down the chute of inevitable recriminations. For Pat Rapp’s sake, the Marlins had their primary trap door button-pusher at the ready. All Stanton had to do was give it a tap. An old foe, Juan Pierre — pinch-running for Greg Dobbs of the Bastardly Greg Dobbses — crept closer and closer to home. A new foe, Christian Yelich — 21 going on 12 by the looks of him — had used all of the veteran savvy at his disposal to work a full-count walk. Giancarlo Stanton…

C’mon. Too obvious.

Maybe that was it. Maybe the trap door had one too many glaring lime green arrows pointing to its entrance. Fool the Mets once, shame on them. Fool the Mets five times in six games played against the last-place Marlins to date at the Loriatorium this season and perhaps they get a clue. Whatever. Stanton swung at Parnell’s first offering and grounded it to Daniel Murphy. Contrary to all Metsian-Marlinian intuition, Murphy picked up the ball and threw it to Davis without incident. Apparently, the Mets forgot to lose.

What a great game to pack up and fly home from! Sadly, three more contests remain down Clevelander way before our escape from implicit doom is scheduled. Wonders will need to continue if we’re ever going to stop assuming the worst about the Mets at the Marlins. Monday night notwithstanding, they’ve provided us ample ammunition for assumption. Then again, there was once a night when Anthony Young was surely headed for 0-14 inside the friendly confines of beautiful Shea Stadium, yet was rescued in the bottom of the ninth when the likes of Jeff McKnight, Dave Gallagher, Ryan Thompson and Eddie Murray (one of these names is not like the others) galloped to his aid. AY’s reward? He didn’t just not drop to 0-14. He rose to 1-13 and snapped a two-year, 27-decision losing streak in the process. When the Mets pulled it out on their historically beleaguered hurler’s behalf, I thought, “I’ll be a Charlie Hough’s uncle — Young finally didn’t lose!”

Whether in 2013 when visiting the Marlins or in 1993 when wallowing through six months of shit-smelling foulness you can’t even imagine, or maybe you just don’t want to, you have to revel in your redemptive triumphs where you can find them.

10 comments to First, We Take Miami

  • Andee

    I hate Greg Dobbs. How does a guy with a .537 OPS manage to terrorize us in every single game? For that matter, how does a team that has scored fewer runs than any other this year by a wide margin manage to score half of them against our pitchers?

    And my heart was in my throat when Parnell was facing not-Mike, but whatever they said to him in that mound meeting, it obviously worked.

    Okay, Zack Wheeler, your turn. Tame those great sluggers Dobbs and Juan Pierre.

  • March'62

    2 points about last night – I think you have to pitch around Yelich in that spot to get to Stanton. You can’t let Yelich beat you. And #2 – If we can sweep in SF, and we can blow the Bronx away, who knows? Maybe we can split the 4 game set in Miami. Stranger things have happened.

  • open the gates

    So Ike Davis is finally starting to “heat up”? Yay.

    Here’s a thought – maybe next year, they can have an extended platoon between Ike and Josh Satin. Josh can start at first base until the All-Star break, let Ike work out his annual early-season woes on the bench, and let them trade places after the All-Star game.

    Makes about as much sense as anything else they’ve done this year.

  • metsfaninparadise

    Loriatorium–priceless. Rhymes with vomitorium. The aforementioned Clevelander was actually the star of the local FOX telecast last night as they spent more time hyping their damn auction than attending to the on-field activity. MLB should verify that there’s an actual sports broadcast taking place before they black us out online.

  • Joe D.

    Hi Greg,

    Again last night Marlon Byrd played a big role in the comeback victory with a run batted in and scoring another.

    We’re going to miss that bat next season, along with that outfield arm that has already given us six assists.

    • open the gates

      See, Joe, here’s what I don’t get. You say that we’re going to miss that bat next season. Why does it have to be that way?

      The Mets, as you recall, started the season with a punchline for an outfield. They had no one. And now, after 2/3 of a season of futzing around with various Cowgills, Ankiels, and Niewenhauses, they finally got it right.

      Eric Young Jr. The leadoff hitter they hadn’t had since Reyes “won” the batting title. Juan Lagares, who came out of nowhere. And the aforementioned Mr. Byrd. Exciting players, timely hitters, and the best fielding outfield the Mets have had since – well, maybe, ever.

      And now that the Mets assembled an outfield miles better than they had any right to expect, naturally everyone assumes that they will dismantle it. Just because.

      What the Mets should do is keep the outfield exactly as is for next year, and throw in Valdespin as an ’86-Mets-style Kevin Mitchell-esque super-sub fourth outfielder. And this September, play Lucas Duda for all he’s worth, hoping some other team gets lulled by his power potential, and doesn’t notice his extreme streakiness and, ah, shall we say, adventurous play in the outfield.

      But that probably won’t happen. Why? Because they’re the Mets. That’s why.

  • kjs

    Vot? Then we take Irving Berlin? Or Jeannie? I’ m plotzing.