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.

Gold Dust

No need to stop the presses, as the Mets finally maintain a 2-0 lead versus the Royals.

No need to stop the presses, as the Mets finally maintain a 2-0 lead versus the Royals.

All that gold in which the world champion Kansas City Royals draped themselves over the past two games is now dust. Gold dust. They can cram it into tiny tubes, authenticate it, mark it up and sell it as Thor-used to their heart’s content.

They’ve still won what they’ve won, yet we still have the most astounding concentration of starting pitching in civilization. We were reminded of both irrefutable facts Tuesday.

The Royals can have their flags and their rings and the accoutrements of 2015 victory. The Mets can have Noah Syndergaard pitch every fifth day and call him, depending on the prevailing winds, their No. 3 starter.

Some staff. Some stuff. This Syndergaard is good for all time zones, including the Central, where the late afternoon start, like the starter, hit all its spots. The Mets played fourteen postseason games in 2015 and none of them ended in daylight. Opening Night…well, it was called Opening Night for a reason, though Nightmarish Continuation would have sufficed. The last time the Mets took and left the field under the sun was October 4, just before they departed on their journey to greater things, which itself was the first instant they and sunshine were seen simultaneously in about a week. They won that well-pitched game, too.

Daylight does a Met body good, particularly one that’s listed at 6’ 6” and 240. Noah led us out of the darkness that enveloped the first game of 2016 and, after permitting a foreboding triple to leadoff pest Alcides Escobar, retired almost every Royal he faced Tuesday, doing so with command, arsenal and poise.

Wear all the gold you want. You face that and you’re gonna end your afternoon with your luster tarnished.

Thanks to Neil Walker bringing to bear the kind of home run power we’ve come to expect from our second basemen, the Mets took a 2-0 lead in the fourth. Thanks to everybody else in the lineup, the score loitered at 2-0 for an uncomfortable interval. Nothing wrong with leading the world champs — have you heard they’re relentless? — by two as the innings are whittled away, except for oh that déjà vu. The Mets led the Royals, 2-0, through eight one night in November, you might recall. That lead didn’t hold up.

This one did. Thor masterfully ’gaarded his advantage over six (three hits, one walk, nine strikeouts). The bullpen that never quite quelled doubts five-plus months ago transcended adequacy and groped at excellence. Jim Henderson, whose name evokes director of sales for your granary supplies’ Midwestern branch, turned the top of the seventh into a company picnic, complete with balloon animals for the kids. Addison Reed, who won’t always calm your anxieties, was Xanax for the Mets fan’s soul. And Jeurys Familia, a platinum reliever except when encountering Justin Upton, Alex Gordon and cruel fate, was his usual phenomenal self. In the middle of reveling in Jeurys’s tour de Familia, respect must be paid to Walker, who had trouble cleanly scooping an Eric Hosmer grounder with one out in the ninth, but did manage to pick it up and fire it to first, thus retiring both the runner and a seven-game-old narrative that had seeped all over our brand new calendar.

The Royals get all the breaks and eventually make the Mets pay. But they don’t cash in on every last one of them, we discovered an instant later, as Familia earned the glittering item we learned across several frightful nights last fall can be more precious than gold: a save.

The Mets are 1-1, exactly where they were after two games in 2015 (and a whole lot of other less rewarding seasons). Two and Oh would be better, as would 162-0 eventually, but this is fine. We got the first loss out of the way, we got the first win nailed down and we get on with our baseball lives. We now wait out the bizarro-schedule portion of the week — off Wednesday, off Thursday; bundle up Friday for our own humble ceremonies; and by next Tuesday, it will be like this year has been going on forever.

With pitching like we saw from Syndergaard, that sounds like an enticing proposition.

21 comments to Gold Dust

  • Mikey

    a win in the second game of the season should not make us this happy, but that was just therapeutic. It was therapeutic watching Thor strand a runner on third with nobody out, and then striking out Morales with the bases loaded. and then giving the Royals a taste of their own 7-8-9 medicine from our bullpen. I don’t think that win was so much getting the first win out of the way as it was saving face and not being embarrassed by those guys AGAIN. We can truly hang with them and maybe we’ll sweep them in June at Citi Field. and then maybe we’ll see them again in October and flip the script (if we make it that far–knock wood–I would hope we play a different team). but that win yesterday was just good for the soul. Now let’s go get at least 99 more!

  • Dave

    So for all of their flags and videos and bling, Royals still aren’t quite so ready to meet Thor 60’6″ away, are they? Unfortunately the claim my place of employment has on my time kept me from being able to see any of the game, but it sounds as though the Royals were beaten rather soundly by someone whose manhood they apparently question based on the length of his hair…uh, I thought the Central Time Zone was an hour behind us, not 50 years (why not play “Are You a Boy Or Are You a Girl” by the Barbarians?).

    But place of employment be damned on Friday, that’s what StubHub and personal days are for. LGM!

  • DaveB

    I don’t know if this came through in the broadcast, but Thor came out of the dugout for his warmpups at the same time the Royals were handing out rings to the players. They had gotten through the staff and were announcing Ned Yost and the crowd was all about the rings, until he came out of the dugout and then they were all about booing at him. I can’t say if he intentionally upstaged the ceremony or if it was coincidence, but it was spectacular timing either way. I’d like to believe he was just staking his claim on the field at that moment and damn the second round of circle jerking.

    • Mikey

      brilliantly said DaveB…..”damn the second round of circle jerking”….that’s the perfect description of Royals baseball

      • Dennis

        Ehh……can’t get worked up over celebrations stretched out over two days. They’ve been bad for such a long time, they’re entitled to have their day in the sun. When the Mets win it all this year, and management decides to do the same thing in 2017 that the Royals are doing now, are any of you going to complain about that?

  • Dennis

    Nice win and Thor’s performance is something we should be able enjoy all season long from our starters, as there should be no extended losing streaks with that kind of pitching.

  • Rob E.

    As far as the Royals are concerned, yesterday’s win was important to show that they can’t just show up and beat us. It also sort of established Thor as a Thorn in their side. He’s beaten them twice (with authority), he took them out of THEIR game as much as the Royals took us out of OUR game the other times, and it’s good to have a guy that they will fear a little, whether that be in June or October.

    As far as the Mets are concerned, you ALWAYS have to stem the wave of negativity that’s ALWAYS just one game away. Good that they did that quickly. Going 0-2 to KC with the media (and fans!) having two off days to kill them would have made it feel like 0-10. At least there will be peace in the valley for two days. I’ll take that!

  • Ken K. in NJ

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but was that the worst Home Run call of Gary Cohen’s career? He was mid-sentence about something else and it was almost like he was not even paying attention. Such a matter-of-fact call, not even an “It’s outta here!”.

    For a split second I wasn’t even sure if it was the actual game or there was some sort of replay going on of a previous Walker Home Run.

  • Pete In Iowa

    Nineteen swings and misses on 92 pitches!! Are you freaking kidding!! What a beast our “number three” starter is!!
    Perhaps even better was his approach with Hosmer in the sixth. After falling behind, he knew he didn’t have to throw a strike if he didn’t want to. Give the open base and attack Morales. That was beautifully artful pitching. Just like a seasoned veteran would do.

  • Bob

    Odin is pleased!

    Let’s Go Mets!

  • Lenny65

    Yes, now let’s get on with real baseball…no more of this DH nonsense and ceremonies and etc. We are on the cusp of greatness here and there’s unfinished business at hand. It’s incredible to realize that Thor doesn’t even have a full MLB season under his belt, he’s absolutely fearsome.

    • Eric

      Early Kerry Wood. He has a post-season, which is invaluable. I would have liked for deGrom to pitch pretend WS game 6 in the season opener, but Syndergaard winning pretend WS game 7 will do.

  • Eric

    Syndergaard is established now. Jury’s still out on the Mets offense, defense, and bullpen, but 3 bonafide stoppers in the starting rotation and a stud closer are a good baseline.

  • Eric

    If Henderson can keep it up, suddenly the middle-inning relief depth looks a lot better.

  • Paul from Brooklyn

    Of course Thor came out during the ring ceremony! Psyche! He had them right where he wanted them,swinging at air.
    It’s great to have the two of you back! see you at Citifield this weekend.
    Let’s Go Mets!

  • eric1973

    Did the deGroms have the baby yet, or is this BS going to go on for another week, where now everyone needs to be ready ‘just in case.’ TC loves this stuff, so he can publicly blab about all the options he has. He sure loves the sound of his own voice.

    Too bad Daniel Murphy didn’t have another kid on Opening Day this year.

  • Wilpons taking away from Thor’s performance with cheapskate dealings regarding Piazza’s 9/11 game jersey. MLB should be ashamed to be associated with these jerks.

  • Dave

    Eric – the news on deBaby is that Ms. deGrom, although due on Tuesday, has yet to go into labor, and Mr. deGrom is scheduled to start his 2nd consecutive home opener. Which seems foolish…how he’d be able to stay focused is a mystery to me. They should let Harvey go on normal rest or let Matz pitch so that deGrom can be sitting next to the phone and ready to go.

  • That Adam Smith

    It’s funny how big of a deal it felt like to win game 2 of the season. With the rematch and the days off, it really did feel like this series was set off in its own little parallel universe. And that universe seemed cruel after game 1, which took only two batters to look sickeningly like time had reversed itself. Thor certainly made a statement yesterday, and the bullpen more than held up its end of the bargain. By the way, watching Jim Henderson (granary sales or phys ed teacher? You decide) slinging at 95 and imagining this reclamation project owning the 7th inning all season felt a little like drawing an inside straight. In the end, I think that this weird flashback of a series is going to help this team as they gear up for the season that is about to start in this dimension. I kind of expect them to rip through the early part of the schedule, bringing on flashbacks from a much more distant past, say, 1986.

  • […] that armor-piercing fastball with movement, the ungodly slider, the rapidly improving change. In Syndergaard’s first start against Kansas City, I took to Twitter in awe after Noah unleashed what was identified as a 95 MPH […]