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.

The Supporting Cast

Greg and I divvy up recap duties by series — most often one series at a time, sometimes two or three. Usually we start by comparing schedules and subtracting evenings on which the world will interfere with baseball-centric life. Sometimes we put our hands up for a game because we’ll be in attendance.

And sometimes there are other factors. Before the Nats series, Greg raised his hand for Tuesday because he hadn’t chronicled “a Synderstaart” since our unrequested rematch with Kansas City.

Yes, Noah Syndergaard being on the mound is must-see TV and a happy-to-recap calendar item.

But not even Syndergaard can stand alone. He was phenomenal Sunday afternoon — 11 Ks, six singles, no walks, no earned runs — but perhaps the most impressive aspect of his performance was that he didn’t arrive with his usual arsenal. He wound up playing peekaboo with his pitches, his command coming and going in a perplexing manner. In the early innings the fastball was refusing to stick to the corners and the slider was off, so Syndergaard and Rene Rivera turned to improv, leaning on the curve and the change-up and coaxing the other two pitches along. That plan wouldn’t have succeeded last summer, but after a rough patch Syndergaard hit fast-forward on his 2015 pitching lessons, looking like a different pitcher in September and October. Today, the result of the Syndergaard-Rivera collaboration was a line most starters would kill to leave the park with.

Rivera did more than play co-strategist: in the seventh, he corralled a fastball in the dirt and gunned down Alex Presley on an ill-advised break for second with runners on first and third and no one out. Gifted an out, Syndergaard struck out Ramon Flores, got a ground ball from Aaron Hill and was home-free. Also chipping in was Syndergaard’s Upper East Side roommate Michael Conforto, whose first-inning home run extinguished a brief Brewer lead, and Asdrubal Cabrera, who lined a flat Chase Anderson curve over Hill’s head for the go-ahead run and a spot of insurance in the fourth.

The fly in the ointment? Not to be too Metsian, but it wasn’t that hard to spot: you’ll find a chronicle of all the scoring two sentences above. The Mets scored 11 runs in sweeping the Brewers, after scoring four in dropping two out of three to the Nats, nine in getting swept by the Rockies (and in Coors Field no less), 10 in four games split with the Dodgers, and 13 in a four-game split with the Padres. You have to go back one more series — the three-gamer against the wretched Braves — to find the last time the Mets averaged four runs a game.

That’s an unlikely formula for success against the Nats, whom the Mets will probably take on without Lucas Duda, leaving them deprived of Duda and Travis d’Arnaud and trying to figure out how to manage David Wright‘s woes. As for Syndergaard, he’s next scheduled to ply his trade on Saturday against the Dodgers. Must-see TV, of course — but what kind of performances will it follow?

23 comments to The Supporting Cast

  • Daniel Hall

    Yay for a slow-motion sweep over the pathetic Brewers! I still have the bite marks on my fist from the last two games. Reed on Saturday and that seventh inning on Sunday. Now bring on the D.C. River Rats! Good news: Scherzer pitched yesterday, so no no-no this time. Please.

  • eric1973

    Sorry, Matt in Richmond, you got it wrong on all 3 counts:

    1— I’ve always said Robles could be great.
    2—–Ces is bigger than last year
    3—–I never used the term “Total Clueless.” That was someone else. I did say I liked his spunk, but that he may like the sound of his own voice a bit too much.

    At least pick on things I really did say.

    Now onto Washington and get Harvey fixed!

  • Greg Mitchell

    On Cespedes: 3 times in 3 games he let falls fall in front of him. Any other CF would have dove for at least ONE of them. Maybe not his thing but come on, once in awhile you hsve to leave your feet.

    I hope Harvey get it together but as I’ve said before–I doubt it. Someone cited Dallas Keuchel’s very slow start as an example of very good pitcher just having a long slump. But: Keuchel hurled a whopping 240 innings last year, including playoffs, topping his previous high of 200. So no surprise there. I suspect we’ve seen the last of deGrom’s 98 mph fastballs until next year also.

  • eric1973

    Hey guys, Yesterday was my Birthday.

    Anything you would like to give me?

  • kdbart

    Cespedes is not sliding on the basepath bcause of the bruise to his thigh. He’s not going to dive after balls because of the same thing.

    • Greg Mitchell

      The bruise was three to four weeks ago. Surely headled. Did he ever dive last year? I don’t recall.

      BTW, Terry–always tempted to overuse his pen–now has both Familia (and Reed) on pace for 85 games. No top closer in recent years has come close to that.

  • eric1973

    LOL Dennis!

  • 9th string catcher

    If Duda and Wright are injured, there are a lot of holes to fill in the lineup. Is there any thought to bringing Taijeron up from AAA and throw him at 1st base? Also, TJ Rivera is hitting .378 in 148 ABs down on the farm. I know there’s a big difference between AAA and MLB, but I would like to see what they can do. I’ve seen enough of Campbell to last a lifetime…

  • Ken K. in NJ

    I’ve been following your blog for probably 6 or 7 years now and I don’t think you guys have ever discussed how you decide Who Does Which Game, but I’ve wondered about it. So, thanks for the Inside Baseball, or more to the point, Inside Blog peek behind the scenes.

  • Matt in Richmond

    Eric 1973 you are being incredibly disingenuous . You have repeatedly bashed Robles, your favorite line being “you can’t spell problems without Robles”. Last year, every single time he would give up so much as a run, you were all over him, and questioning why TC brought him in.

    Maybe Cespedes is bigger, maybe not. All I know is this; you have a strange obsession with players’ weight, and not only did you comment on his size, but you questioned whether he could be productive. I’d say he’s more than answers that question.

    The Collins issue is the most hilarious. Many people questioned his every move last year, but none was more vociferous in their disapproval than you. Questioning his lineups, questioning his bullpen moves, even questioning his media responses. And now you play all innocent like you’ve been a supporter? Come now brother.

  • eric1973

    Yeah, that Robles line was a good one. :)

    It was in the same post as:
    “You can’t spell Duda without Dud”

    Yeah, the weight thing I guess I do notice, but I wasn’t the only one. Granted, I’ve heard nothing regarding Ces, but if he dives or slides, he could actually injure himself (again). And it sure hasn’t stopped his hitting.

    Tejada was overweight, and ‘Met sources’ had commented that he was out of shape.

    Legares lost 25 pounds, and I had not heard anyone else mention he was overweight last year, except me. So gotta give me props for that one. He lost it because he gained it.

    And someone on the radio mentioned Harvey could lose a few, so that one might be out there.

    TC can be annoying, though, as, in his answers, he always mentions the person’s name who asks the question, and every singlee thought is voiced:
    “Well, Bill, well, Joe, well, Stan”
    But no, I liked a lot of the things he did. Others here displayed true dislike for him.

  • Lenny65

    Too many scalding “hot takes” thus far this season. I suppose winning fuels this trend, but seriously, the level of knee-jerk reactions to every single game and/or event is getting tiresome already. It’s Mets baseball, weird things are going to happen.

  • Jason Fry

    Folks, we’re all friends here. Please err on the side of caution in not personalizing things.

    • Lenny65

      I wasn’t directing my comment any anyone or anything specific to this site, where the comment section is always awesome IMO. IMO as Mets fans we’re always waiting for the other shoe to drop and we always have a tendency to wildly overreact when the storm clouds gather and after last year’s insane ride it’s just exhausting to be this angst-ridden already. Harvey, deGrom, Wright, TDA, now Lucas, Eric Campbell still being around, Murphy batting .750 or whatever, lots of negativity early this year especially considering they’re off to a pretty decent start, especially in Mets terms. Long season, lots of weird, unexpected things will definitely happen, some great, some awful. It reminds me a little of how it was in 1987, which I remember as a fairly unpleasant (relatively speaking) and rather contentious year, only with no internet. I guess being treated to a once-a-generation ride tends to skew perspective a little. It just gets all so serious nowadays.

      So let’s say they close it out tonight (it’s still going on right now) and Harvey shows some semi-vintage stuff (boy is it weird to be saying that) and they finish a three game sweep behind Matz after that…would that tone down my personal angst. Probably, until they get one-hit by some rookie pitcher making his second career start over the weekend, sure!!

  • Bob

    Thor—Odin is pleased!
    Met fan since Polo Grounds—Let’s Go Mets!

  • Greg Mitchell

    I, too, noted Lagares weight gain last year. The announcers mentioned a million times that he was not playing close to Gold Glove form, not getting balls, but never mentioned weight, just his elbow, which has nothing to do with range.

    And yes, Harvey has put on quite a few. Just look at him as rookie and, wow.

  • Eric

    Our back-up 1B is playing 2B for the Nationals.

  • eric1973

    Lenny65, 1987 was the most maddeningly frustrating season in history. Even though the whole staff either was injured or out due to drugs, they still should have run away with it, with Terry Leach going 10-1 as a replacement starter. Each day was as tension-ridden as could be, as there was no Wild Card to distract everyone from who finishes first, or to turn playoff races into a non-distinct mish-mash. Hate to offend the Wild Card fans out there, but the Wild Card has ruined true pennant race excitement, even with the one-and-done they do now.

    • Lenny65

      eric 1973: I remember…Ojeda out, Doc, uh…”sidelined”, John Mitchell, who almost drowned once, John Candelaria, who was pretty good way before the Mets got him, the talk about signing Seaver, actually getting Bob Gibson (not that one), HoJo going off, Big Mac, Orosco imploding, that vicious hate-filled battle with the Cardinals, that was a weird season all right. Plus there was the ’86 hangover, you just don’t come down from a regular season gloat-a-thon and an epically pulse-pounding postseason like that all at once. A pretty successful yet extremely tense and unrewarding season.

    • Dennis

      While the Wild Card has basically eliminated a true pennant race, it did give us 1999 & 2000.