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 Sky Is Falling But There's Always More Sky

Three thoughts on the Mets being unexpectedly and horrifically shorn of Edwin Diaz for the 2023 season:

1) Joe Sheehan got some grief on Twitter for saying that the loss of a “one-inning reliever” was “a bee sting, not an axe blow,” and while I wouldn’t have put it that way — losing Diaz is being stung by the whole goddamn nest at minimum — I do see his point. The Mets arguably have six stars/superstars: Pete Alonso, Francisco Lindor, Jeff McNeil, Max Scherzer, Justin Verlander and Diaz. If I told you that you had to lose one of those six for the entirety of 2023, whom would you choose? You’d hem and haw and look for a loophole of course, what with being a good person and all, but I bet once you were convinced there wasn’t another way out you’d pick Diaz, which is what Sheehan was pointing out. The Mets have added a lot of depth to their bullpen in the offseason and the gap between a good closer and a great one doesn’t strike me as that big when measured over a full season. The Mets will be a lot less fun without the lights going down and the strains of Timmy Trumpet starting up, but I’m not convinced they’ll be an order of magnitude worse.

2) I hate the WBC, OK? I hate it because I can barely tolerate spring training even without shipping off most of the players I know and forcing them to wear uniforms that look like interns designed them, and that was true before anyone important to me got hurt. I think ballplayers who are Mets ought to be Mets all the way (cue the Leonard Bernstein score), and when they’re not actively being Mets they should sit quietly and think about how to be better Mets. But I’m also aware that this is insane. Diaz didn’t blow out an elbow because he was overamped pitching for Puerto Rico in March; he blew out a knee because he’s human and the world is imperfect and shit happened. Gavin Lux just tore his ACL and is out for the season, an injury suffered in the kind of meaningless spring-training game our current situation tempts us to proclaim as invariably harmless. To bring the topic back to closers, in 2012 Mariano Rivera blew out a knee and missed the bulk of a season while shagging flies in the outfield during batting practice. (Believe it or not, bad shit also happens to that local team from that jumped-up beer league.) Ballplayers get hurt, sometimes badly, because they iron shirts while wearing them and stick forks in their eyes and get hungry at night in Miami and have nightmares about spiders and decide early October is an excellent time to trim the hedges. Shit happens, and I’m sorry if that’s not a cogent philosophy, but it’s a lot more accurate guide to life than most anything cogent philosophers have offered us in 3,000-odd years of trying.

3) Imagine for a moment that Diaz had been injured in March 2020, before [all that] happened. Good people would have immediately expressed that it was a terrible shame; people who needed to be reminded that they’re good would have snarked about addition by subtraction before the better angels of their nature tapped them, perhaps a little demonstratively, on the shoulder; and bad people would have said the things that bad people always say. Suffice it to say the reaction would have been different. Instead, the curtailed, artificial 2020 season was the start of Diaz’s rebirth in New York. It was the tentative, fanless start that led to a better 2021 and then the yearlong celebration that was 2022. Back in 2020 we were all ready to drive Diaz to the airport ourselves in exchange for a warm body and a bunch of sunflower seeds; now we’re in sackcloth and ashes over his impending absence. That’s a reminder, when we desperately need one, that being a Mets fan does not actually mean trudging along with a hissing and spitting black rain cloud over one’s head 24-7-. Good things do happen to us, redemption stories are sometimes written, and there really are second acts in Metsian lives. Let’s remember that as we’re mourning this blow.

Let’s remember that, and reflect that we have a lot deeper bullpen than in a year when we won 100 games, and think about how even a bunch of bee stings aren’t fun but usually aren’t fatal.

And if we can hold all that in our heads, why not go a step further?

Fuck it, let’s win it all anyway.

8 comments to The Sky Is Falling But There’s Always More Sky

  • Seth

    Point 3 is well taken. Also, loved the Ojeda reference in #2. But that guy is lucky to be alive (and have all 10 digits). Edwin will be back… I should only live so long.

  • eric1973

    Might as well have FORCED Nimmo to play in the WBC. He’s gonna get hurt anyway, doesn’t matter where.

  • eric1973

    The most maddening thing about Diaz’ injury is that he was hurt during the FAKE portion of the celebration, AFTER the spontaneous joyous jumping up and down moment just after the final pitch.

    Great game last nite, I confess to watching it. So glad PR lost, as I baseball-hate Stroman and Baez, and want to tuck Lindor into his own Spring Training bed as soon as possible.

  • Bob

    As a 10-year old Met fan in 1962, one of my first memories was when Ritchie Ashburn’s gift boat from the Mets (for being their best player in 62) sank when he had it docked.
    Over the next 60 years, from Bob Ojeda cutting his pitching hand in 1988 just before playoffs with Dodgers,to Cespedes
    stepping in gopher holes or a host of other injury clusterfu#%s.
    SO, No surprise as I sat here watching then end of that game and when the Puerto Rican team starts jumping around, my mind (or what remains) recall Jerry Morales Hitting a slam to win game for Angels and breaks ankle jumping on home plate.

    Let’s Go Mets!

  • open the gates

    All excellent points, but it still hurts.

    Your third point is worth pondering. Do we care more when a good player is injured than when a bad player is? Sure we do, because we’re fans. Ultimately, it was just as devastating for a John Curtiss or a Joey Lucchesi to lose a season to injury – at least it was to them – but we’re not as invested in them as fans. Maybe we should be.

  • eric1973

    Yeah, when I heard Joey was injured, I cried my eyes out. Maybe we should have hung his uniform on the dugout ceiling, like the PR team did with Diaz. Heard Nimmo’s uniform is going up today, and maybe even a plaque.

  • Blair M. Schirmer

    == “…than in a year when we won 100 games,…”

    —Routinely neglected (in truth I never see it addressed anywhere) is that the Mets significantly overperformed in 2022. Among the seven qualifiers among hitters, alone, Lindor, McNeil, Alonso, Escobar, Marte, Canha, and Nimmo were about 9 fWAR over projections, and while that gives them a bump in expectations for 2023 that bump is nowhere near 9 wins worth.

    Cohen was right to lunge however desperately after Correa; his error was waiting until all but one star was unsigned. Correa was necessary to getting the 2023 Mets near their 2022 level, but that’s not happening now of course.

    As for pitchers, Peterson’s very marginal as a rotation regular. His ERA in 2021 was 5.54. He can’t go five innings with any regularity and struggles to keep the hits under 9 per 9 and walks under 4 per 9. He needs to get lucky on fly balls to have any kind of season. It’s worth noting that in Quint at 34 the Mets lost their second _youngest_ starter. That’s bad–particularly when Carrasco, at 36, has had all of one season since 2018 with more than 80 innings.

    As for bullpen depth, I’m not seeing it, particularly not now. It had good and great pitching at the top, very modest albeit competent performers after that, and no body at all—and now of course its greatness will be rooting from the bench, only, while a bunch of guys like Nogosek and Bryce Montes de Oca and his 6-7 walks per 9 are in the line to get 60 innings apiece this season.

    I’d say they have a good shot at the sixth NL postseason slot, and it’s going to be rougher road than most think. This is an ancient team with a lot of recent, dicey performance and injuries on their ledgers, and they’re already struggling badly with the latter.

  • Daniel Hall

    On the bright side – now we don’t have to pretend we’ll be winners anymore!

    (continues to sob)