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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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Let's Play Two-Thirds

Now there’s the ticket.

The Mets played six innings against the Phillies Wednesday night, which meant no disastrous fourth time through the order, no bullpen implosion, no horrifying defensive gaffe, no bats gone home early. Robert Gsellman looked aggressive and strong for five innings, less good for one inning, but then he was done. And the Mets did plenty of hitting against former tormenter Nick Pivetta, with Asdrubal Cabrera and Travis d’Arnaud leading the charge.

And, OK, a tip of the cap to the rain.

This one of those games that was all about what the rain had done for us lately. With the Mets having jumped out to an uncharacteristically big lead, the worry was that it would show up and wash away everything from Gsellman’s non-surgically repaired attitude (now there’s a rare fix in these parts) to TdA’s offensive outburst. Then, with the Phillies creeping back into view, the worry became that the rain would take its time, drizzling ambivalently until lead and possibly sanity had been lost.

But no, the rain performed admirably. Someone give it a share of the crown.

If this wasn’t the most sparsely attended game of the season, I don’t want to know what lies ahead. Greg, who seems trustworthy about these things, noted the paid attendance of 19,617 was the lowest in Citi Field history. Actual butts in actual seats? You had enough for two teams (should the Mets and Phils have decided to stay warm and dry and play videogames) but probably not for your own replacement league.

A hearty salute, though, to those who had a ticket and made use of it. Pretty much every conceivable misfortune became reality for this year’s Mets, it was a miserable night that promised to get far worse, and Citi Field’s a short subway ride from a metropolis with a near-infinity of things — many of them indoor pursuits — to interest anyone.

I may question the sanity of those who decided watching Gsellman exorcise his self-summoned demons was the best use of their Wednesday night, but I’ll never say a peep about their passion. In the background of the broadcast, you saw people sitting in the rain in ponchos, in converted garbage bags, or protected by nothing more than stoicism and love for the game.

Including my personal fan of the game — the artisanally bearded gent meticulously keeping score under an umbrella emblazoned with the word ENJOY. Now that’s a fan. And more than that — given the circumstances, that’s a Mets fan.

Here’s hoping you’re back tonight, sir, and Matt Harvey and the Mets give you nine innings, a full two pages in the scorebook, and another win.

* * *

Our famous Faith and Fear numbers shirt is back, now featuring Mike Piazza’s 31, the same order you’ll see at Citi Field, and even a more accurate font. For men’s styles, go here; women’s styles are here. Either is $24.08 from T-Shirt Mojo, with proceeds helping us pay our server costs. Wear it with pride, in whatever weather.

5 comments to Let’s Play Two-Thirds

  • I’m heading out to my 2nd game this week, and I hope we stay longer than we did on Tuesday. We have a half season plan and I can’t abide wasting too many tickets. If I get a starter from anyone not named Milone right now, I’m good. Hopefully Matt makes some forward progress tonight.

  • eric1973

    Kudos to those fans in the stands last nite, and that might have been me if they still played at Shea.

    For starters, let me say I am a big fan of Sandy, and I go back and forth on TDA, though recently more back than forth.

    Heard Sandy on the Mets radio pre-game show on Tuesday, and he was at his doubletalking best. Not sure if he actually believes what he is saying, but he said that TDA is one of the best catchers in baseball, according to the ‘esoteric metrics’ that he uses. He said that TDA is the best when it comes to tagging runners out at the plate. That’s certainly an esoteric metric, I guess, and I do believe that he frames pitches very well.

    I half-expected Sandy next to praise him for the best ‘walkup music’ of any catcher in the league.

  • Gil

    I have to wonder how many people were actually watching from their couch.

  • […] to the eye test. Yet the numbers continue to be printed as fact. It took nearly nine seasons and buckets of rain for the Mets to finally issue, on Wednesday night, a paid attendance figure of (slightly) less than […]