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.

Another Sticky Wicket

The part where the Mets hit three home runs; receive a practically flawless performance from their starter; and win is the best part from Sunday night at Wrigley Field. Sadly, it’s not the main part. The main part is the part where the umpires inspect the Mets’ closer’s glove and pitching hand and tell him, nope, you can’t come in, you’re out of the game, and you’ll find you’re about to be suspended for ten more games on top of this one when you didn’t even get to pitch as planned.

That’ll take the edge off a good night, eh?

There’s no getting around the impending absence of Edwin Diaz for something that had nothing to do with jumping around on a WBC mound or a shoulder impingement. Just as Sugar seemed to be rounding back into Narcoesque form, the cops come and get him for having a little too much stick-to-it-iveness on his person. Per the pool report (required for simple communication with the media and therefore the fans because umpires are more imperious than the bleeping Supreme Court of the United States), crew chief Vic Carapazza reasoned, “It definitely wasn’t rosin and sweat. We’ve checked thousands of these. I know what the feeling is.” Well, that’s ample enough evidence to bleep over a team just finding its footing, ain’t it? Whatever the umps told Edwin, “go wash your hands and we’ll try this again” apparently wasn’t one of their suggestions.

Diaz, like Max Scherzer and Drew Smith before him, said the sticky-substance ejection followed him doing absolutely nothing different from usual in his routine. Smith, who substituted on no notice for Edwin in the ninth, said that after his 2023 ejection and suspension, he changed absolutely nothing about his preparation. Drew hasn’t been ejected since. He, like every pitcher, gets checked every time he goes to the mound. One time he got nabbed, as if the umps had a quota to fill before the end of whatever month. In this era when “accountability” is so valued by this ballclub, maybe one of the Mets’ umpteen coaches should be responsible for a glove & hand inspection of each pitcher prior to every inning before the umps get their gander, just as a precaution. Pretend it’s a new base hit celebration and the whole team will be into it.

Barring an unlikely successful appeal of the sticky-stuff ruling, the Mets will be sans Diaz for ten games and won’t be permitted to replace him on the roster. No time is ever good to be shorthanded, let alone without your ninth-inning man, especially when the team is playing well enough to be nursing leads of three runs or fewer as games near conclusions. The fireman’s role figures to be up for grabs this week and next. Drew didn’t exactly lay down a marker versus the Cubs, getting pulled with two out and a runner on first, shaking his right arm a bit during his surprise outing. Lefty Jake Diekman came on to finish, and he did. We’ll see who gets the ball when.

Too bad about all this from multiple angles, including that it makes a Mets fan forget what a good game we saw Sunday, despite ESPN’s involvement in telecasting it. Back-to-back homers from Francisco Lindor and Brandon Nimmo in the third made the score 3-0, and we never trailed from there. J.D. Martinez produced the most useful of groundouts to extend the lead in the fifth. When Luis Severino sat down after six shutout innings (10 Ks), the Cubs were so energized, they nicked Dedniel Nuñez for a pair of runs. Mark Vientos sapped half that life out of them by responding with a ball hit so far that it was out of the reach of any bleacherite wishing to fling it toward the grass.

We didn’t even pay a karmic price for two terrific defensive plays by 2020 Mets first-round draft choice Pete Crow-Armstrong, who, you’re probably aware, was traded to the Cubs in one those Win Now moves that didn’t result in winning then. The most impressive of the PC-A gems was a throw that nailed Francisco Alvarez going from second to third on a single, which is something a baserunner usually does with zero hassle. Earlier in the season, you could picture that sort of basepath blunder blowing up in our collective face. Sunday it was simply isolated fodder for The George Michael Sports Machine of the mind’s eye.

Yeah, good game (5-2), good series (two of three), good road trip, (four of six), good place in the shall we say fluid Wild Card standings (one out of a playoff spot, not behind too many combatants). Not a good development with Diaz, however. Maybe we shouldn’t sweat it too much. If we do, we, too, might get thrown out.

8 comments to Another Sticky Wicket

  • LeClerc

    Why is McNeil in the starting lineup?

  • eric1973

    Give Nunez a couple shots against the Yanks. Guy looks dynamite.

  • Seth

    How often does this sticky suspension happen to other teams? Is it a Mets thing, or an umpires thing?

    • Ten suspensions overall since this became a thing. Mets have received three of them, no other team more than one.

      • Seth

        Well, OK. I’m sure it’s not that the Mets are doing anything illegal, I’m sure the umpires just hate the Mets for some reason (sarcasm).

  • Joey G

    As Gaylord Perry might suggest, in addition to one of the “Mets’ umpteen coaches” being responsible for a pre-emptive glove & hand inspection of each pitcher, they should also make sure to check behind the ears (and maybe between them for anyone clueless enough to get caught for this heinous infraction).

  • Ken K. in NJ

    OK, I felt guilty about thinking this from the moment Diaz got ejected, but: Nationally televised game, The Chicago Cubs, Wrigley Field, still only two saves in the past month, maybe a couple too many days rest, last game before the dreaded Subway Series…

    I wasn’t all that upset.