Posted on: January 22, 2010 3:12 pm
So, after a very, very long hiatus from posting in any fashion on CBSSports.com, enduring the past year and a half as a Mets fan, and reading the posts of Mets fans who somehow feel entitled to a world championship, I've come to the conclusion that there is a severe lack of trust in the Mets ownership.
First of all, you have the shortfall of the 2006 Mets, who shockingly fell a basehit short of advancing to the World Series to face the uninspiring Detroit Tigers; then there's the choking episodes that were September 2007 & 08; and last but not least, the injury-riddled, depleted Mets of 2009. Man, it seems like eons ago that the Mets were taking everyone in the National League behind the woodshed and smashing their opponents. Admittedly, 2006 seems like 1986. Looking to start fresh, the Mets have a few of the stars on the mend in John Maine, Jose B. Reyes, Oliver Perez (who also needs a few other methods of rehab), David Wright and Carlos Beltran...so we think. The new year came in, and Mets fans, still wallowing in the 3-year stench of Mets-fandom, finally have something bright to look forward to, especially after the Jason Bay signing and then, "POOF!!!" Carlos Beltran will miss the next 3-4 months with surgery, the Mets pitching rotation still needs surgery, and all of a sudden, the Met fan's psyche becomes broken and needs surgery. So what do the Mets do to compensate? They trade Brian Stokes, a middle-of-the-road reliever to the Anaheim Angels for Gary Matthews Jr. Given Angel Pagan's energy, I think Sarge Jr. will do just fine to balance things out in centerfield while Beltran is away.
What I don't get is how every move the Mets make is criticized? I mean, sure, the Mets have gone from powerhouse to pariah in just 3 years! I can understand the fan's frustration, but can we give this thing some time? The Mets aren't exactly the Yankees, and remember that for all of the success the Phillies have had of late, they were always nipping at the heels of the Mets....for years! Let's just walk away from this whole thing as fans and realize that there is parity in baseball, and that the Mets will not contend every year although we expect them to compete. Every move Omar makes (think what you want about him) is made in the best interests of the team...they have to be, I mean he has a family to feed too, right? You think anyone in their right mind, regardless of how much they make, is going to sabotage their job? I don't think so. Give Minaya some credit...he hasn't traded away the farm, he hasn't signed any over-the-hill veterans a la Moises Alou or Mo Vaughn (*cough...Steve Phillips) this offseason, so lay off. The free agent class this winter has been uninspiring at best, so for Omar to stand pat this winter has been good for us. So what, we don't win the headline war in New York? Last I checked, those wins have no bearing on a world championship, so what difference does making the Yankees look like 'stiffs' in the paper make? It's still early, January to be exact, and pitcher and catchers report in just under a month. When April comes around, and everything that matters is happening on the field, then I'll be critical. Until then, the front office is doing what they can to make the Mets competitive. They may seem inept, disconnected from its fanbase and for what it's worth, "disenfranchised" (no pun intended), but the Mets will be back soon...bank on that!
Posted on: June 3, 2008 4:38 pm
So I'm reading this post on Dana Brand's blog at http://metsfanbook.com/blog/; and I was intrigued about his post on Willie Randolph. I thought it was an excellent article, a must read; and so, I thought I'd post it here for all the "Willie Haters" out there who also call themselves Mets fans. Here it goes, and by the way Dana Brand, good job!!!
Obviously, Willie should not have said what he said.
You’d have to be naïve to believe that racism doesn’t play a part, for some people, in the anger and bitterness that has been directed at Willie Randolph lately. But you’d have to be terribly unfair to think that it’s a prominent reason. Mets fans, after the historic choke of last season and the mediocre beginning of this one, have a sense that their team lacks fire and direction. In a situation like this, it’s perfectly plausible to blame the man who is supposed to lead and set the tone for the team. Any manager with a laid back manner and a controversial managerial style is going to get crap from the fans in a situation like this. Ask Art Howe. Race is not the main issue.
And what is this with SNY? Sure they put the camera on him when something bad happens. That’s the way news coverage and sports coverage works. He knows that. And Gary, Keith, and Ron are wonderfully respectful towards Willie. How would he like it if Tim McCarver was back in our booth second-guessing all his moves?
And how about this timing? Finally the air is cleared after the Mets have a meeting and decide not to be distracted by off-the-field stuff. Finally they get their heads together to play up to their potential and clobber the Yankees. All attention is on our opportunity to beat the Braves right after beating the Yankees. And then before you can blink, we’re all back in the media stew. We’re not in the glorious green world of the ballpark. We’re in the jam on the LIE, listening to Mike and the Mad Dog in an endless loop. What a complete and total bummer.
Willie must have known that this was not the time to say what he said. Why would someone who hates off-the-field distractions want to go out and create a big one at the wrongest moment imaginable? There’s only one answer to this question.
Willie must have meant it.
You know how sometimes you’re having a fight with someone and everybody’s finally calmed down and things are all right and then you just can’t help but say something that shows how hurt you were that the other person said what they said before things calmed down? I think this happened here. I don’t think that Willie thinks that racism is the big issue. But my guess is that he can’t help but feel as if it is. I think that like most African-Americans, Willie has had to deal all his life with people who just don’t like him for some reason and don’t want to give him a chance. And I think that when you’ve had to deal with crap like that, it is sometimes hard to put things in perspective when you are suddenly the object of so much intense hostility, when you’ve been doing your job with a pretty fair amount of success for three years. If you’ve looked at the Internet boards and if you’ve listened to the radio, you know how over-the-top the blame-Willie, we-hate-Willie stuff has been. I know this stuff is not necessarily racist. I know it just bubbles up out of the angst of being a Mets fan at this particular moment. But what may be happening is that Willie is mistaking one kind of unfair hostility towards him with another. That may not be fair of him, but I can certainly understand why he feels this way.
The problem, coincidentally, is the same problem Tom Glavine identified at the end of last year in a statement he certainly should not have made. When he said that he was disappointed and not devastated (as we were) to lose the last game of the season in the first inning, he was trying to tell us to back off, to understand that baseball is only a game. This comment was foolish. Tom should have known how much that last game meant to Mets fans, and he should have been devastated, and not merely disappointed. But I can understand where people like Tom and Willie are coming from. They must wonder: how can all of these strangers be so emotionally involved in what happens as I try my best to do my job? Why, if I look as if I’m screwing up, do they actually go so far as to hate me? It’s a reasonable question, but it’s also kind of a dumb question. That’s what this thing is. Baseball is something a baseball fan is passionate about. Sometimes our passion will come after you guys and sometimes it will look like some of the worst things in the world. At other times our passion will lift you to the heavens.
Everybody’s going to be talking for the next couple of days about how unfair and unwise Willie’s comments were. The game I’m watching right now is not going well, so it’s not going to save us. What I’d really like is if in addition to talking about how unfair Willie was, we also recognize something about the anguish that would have prompted him to say what he shouldn’t have said. It must not be easy for these guys, no matter how much money they make or glory they get. Yeah, they should put up with it, yeah, heat, kitchen all that stuff. Yeah, and they’re human beings too.
We should treat them with some understanding. And they should understand where we’re coming from. It is true that baseball is just a game, that it isn’t real. But that’s like saying American Idol isn’t real, or Harry Potter. The statement is true, in the most obvious and literal way. But it ‘s not true.
Posted on: February 16, 2008 10:13 pm
You're damned if you do and damned if you don't. Seems like the Mets can't catch a break these days. When the Mets went out of their minds in '06 and put a whoopin' on everyone in the NL, out came the haters. When the Mets 'choked' as Met-haters like to call it in 2007, all was good in the rest of the NL East. Now that Johan Santana is in tow, representing the 'ace' the Mets needed, all of a sudden I'm hearing things like: "I hope Johan AND Pedro get injured", "The Mets still aren't that good", "The Mets still have questions", etc.
Well, I have a question: Why can't the fans of other teams just concede the fact that the Mets got what they needed in Johan, and now it's going to be a competitive season in the NL East? If Johan happened upon any other team in the league, I'd be disappointed, but not hateful of that team. I'd simply wonder why management didn't do what they needed to do to get him, and express hope that either Livan Hernandez or Kyle (I'm still not signed) Lohse could help the Mets get back to winning ball games. I'm not saying one has to renounce his allegiance to their team (though joining the Mets bandwagon at this point may still be permissible), but 'geez', the Mets need for an ace was obvious in 2006 and 2007. If they had one, you can bet they would have easily beaten the Cardinals in '06; and they sure wouldn't have given, yes given the division over to the Phillies on the last day of last season. But, I don't have to think about that because Johan is down in Port St. Lucie iat this moment as a member of, and working out with the Mets...and will be for the next 7 years.
Now that they've got an ace, LOOK OUT! The offense is more or less the same as it was last season (pretty potent), and everyone in the starting rotation is moving back a slot for Johan. Pedro is just as good if not better than any #2 in the league, John Maine and Oliver Perez as the Mets' third and fourth starter (remember both had 15 wins); and El Duque, the Mets' best starter last season regardless of how old we all speculate he is, is the fifth starter. What a luxury. The bullpen is going to be stronger and more defined not only because of Johan's presence in the rotation, but because Duaner Sanchez is healthy. The bench is deep; and everyone who was with the club in September is going to be playing this season with a huge chip on their shoulder. Note to the rest of the league: this season isn't about adding Johan Santana as much as it is about the Mets getting back to playing the kind of baseball they were playing two years ago when they were thrashing everyone in sight!
Just when you think all that is too much, Carlos Beltran goes out today and tells some reporter to "Tell Jimmy Rollins the Mets are the team to beat". Carlos Beltran??? On what side of the bed did he wake up this morning? Usually humble and reserved, Beltran must know something we don't: The Mets are hungry for revenge, they've have heard all the mess being talked about them this winter; and everything's in place to resume whipping the crap out of everyone in sight. If there weren't enough Met-haters before this, certainly there are a slew more now.....especially those living near Citizen's Bank Park.
It's going to be a great season. For all those who questioned the Mets' leadership in the clubhouse, I think we've found it....and his name is Carlos Beltran.
Let's go, Mets!!!
Posted on: January 28, 2008 5:33 pm