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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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Two Microcosms ... Make That Three

In the top of the first against the playoff-bound Brewers Friday night, the Mets saw 39 pitches from Eric Lauer, were at bat for 20 minutes … and somehow scored one run. There’s a microcosm of their season: inefficient, unlucky, infuriating even when they manage to do something positive.

In the bottom of the first against the playoff-bound Brewers Friday night, Tylor Megill‘s sixth pitch was a four-seamer without much steam or movement. Kolten Wong hit it over the fence, erasing the Mets’ lead in a heartbeat and giving you the distinct impression that it was going to be a long night. There’s another microcosm of the season.

Megill’s exceeded his previous workloads by a fair amount, the arm’s come up a little short, and now the confidence looks like it’s eroding too. (See also: Taijuan Walker.) Yet he’s still out there for some reason — stubbornness, neglect, the lack of any better plan. He gave up back-to-back homers in the third to Willy Adames and Christian Yelich and was done after four. Meanwhile, the Mets let Lauer find his footing and did nothing else against him, trudging through yet another dreary loss against a team whose class they clearly aren’t in.

(You know what might keep me more invested as garbage time creeps along? A peek at a September call-up or two. But as Greg chronicled earlier, MLB — in its ever-infinite wisdom — has now taken away that small pleasure too. I get the problem with playoff contenders having to fight through waves of fire-armed relievers for whom scouting reports are scanty. But why not tell teams they can call up the entire 40-man roster but only dress 28 for each game? Toss bathwater, dry off baby.)

Anyway, this leads to the third microcosm of the season: After Pete Alonso struck out in the sixth, I turned off my TV. I’ll head to Citi Field one more time next week and watch the games when they’re in front of me and life isn’t in the way, but my personal elimination number? It’s been reached.

8 comments to Two Microcosms … Make That Three

  • Seth

    It was grimly predictable — after making noise and scoring only 1 run, what would then happen. A microcosm, to be sure.

    The sad thing is that the team has obviously quit. Instead of finishing strong and playing some competitive baseball (like other teams do down the stretch), they’re giving one last, giant finger to the fans and organization. Very admirable, Mets guys.

  • eric1973

    Aptly described, Seth. One last thumbs-down to the fans.

    Looking forward to the *final* thumbs-down to Rojas/Zack Scott, two birds of a feather.

  • eric1973

    Some more ways that MLB has taken the fun out of the game:

    Before the Wildcard, it was a BIG DEAL when you clinched First Place! Now, you clinch some vague ‘playoff spot,’ and any clinching is barely acknowledged. No cheering in the pressbox, and no cheering in general.

    The replay rule has eliminated all cheering at close plays, as we have to wait to check the replay (Shhhhh) before we cheer the play. By that time, all emotion is gone.

    Give the people what they want. And many of you want this shit. Hope at least you are happy.

  • Ken K. in NJ

    Add excruciating to inefficient, unlucky, and infuriating. During that 39 pitch top of the first, Gary mentioned that the Mets had played 10 games in a row which lasted more than 3 hours and 30 minutes, and as far as anybody can figure out, that’s a Major League record. And what do you know, last night’s game, in spite of what seemed to be a 95 minute first inning, ended the streak, coming in at only 2:56.

  • Eric

    Wildcard tragic number 0. Division tragic number 2. But the only path that works is the Mets winning out and the Phillies winning exactly 2 of 3 from the Braves and the Phillies and Braves losing every other game. That would make a 3-way 82-win tie.

    Seth, good point. Example: Twins. Other eliminated teams are putting up credible efforts against contenders. The Mets are clearly just playing out the string.

    Nevertheless, bad Mets baseball is always better than no Mets baseball. And no playoffs makes the few remaining games this year more precious.

  • mikeL

    yea, that first inning really said it all.
    and yes without the september call-ups (young fresh arms, anyone?) there’s little reason to watch, and little reason to believe magill and walker – and hell, most of the roster won’t carry long-running damage and/or developmental short-circuiting from this pitiful late-season collapse.
    without fresh blood, the whole team looks like a tired middle relieved left out there to take one for the team, a quiet bullpen behind him.
    my only hope at this point is for a billy beane to unload on this team like it’s jeremy giambi dirty dancing in the clubhouse after an ugly loss…and with sufficient authority to dump most of the front office and coaching and training staffs.
    i can dream…

  • Eric

    The 1st inning was representative, grinding out 1 run with RISP LOB and quickly giving the run back on a HR. More so the Mets offense subsequently going to sleep with Lauer pitching 5.2 easy innings after his 39-pitch 1st inning grind.

    Randazzo observed that the Mets seemed to have a different approach at the plate in the 1st inning than in the rest of the game.

  • mikeL

    jorge velandia! jorge toca!
    a couple of early ’00 call-up names that came to me unassisted;0]

    so the mets are officially not going to the post-season.
    is it me or does luis’ body language now *finally* seem to be catching up with the reality of his team’s situation – if about 5-7 weeks too late?

    (did he just realize it’s not *august* 25 – itself LATE)