Monday, September 27, 2004

Games 151 through 156 - Mets
Cue the Mel Allen

Expos 6, Mets 1
Mets 3, Expos 2
Mets 4, Expos 2
Cubs 2, Mets 1
Mets 4, Cubs 3
Mets 3, Cubs 2
Record: 69-87

How about that? The Mets have won two series in a row, defying odds no bookmaker was likely bored enough to lay out. They staved off the Expos, who'd sneaked into the Mets' rearview mirror of late, and nearly ensured themselves of a 4th-place finish rather than the cellar. Then they stunned the contending Cubs, taking two of three in a match-up the Cubs had to love going into the weekend. Of course, I was actually pulling for Chicago, since I'd much rather see them make the playoffs than Barry Bonds & Co. So yet again the Mets administer a kick in my groin.

In truth, though, it is nice to see the Mets winning again. That it coincided with the return of their middle infield and the surprising contributions of some young call-ups is the type of garbage-time play that can keep lit the tiniest flicker of hope for next season during the winter months. The last six games of the season can extend this baseless optimism even further; beating the Braves is always an accomplishment, no matter if they're coasting into yet another postseason, and wins in the last three games against the future Senators could be an excellent way to cap off an otherwise dreary season.

You can't read anything about the Mets these days that doesn't rip into the Mets' management. The indictments of ineptitude are pouring in from blogs around the country and media personnel throughout baseball. The fans, through soapboxes like this one, have never had as much of a publicly audible voice, and their rumblings are registering on Richter scales throughout the five boroughs. It's never an easily rectified situation when the problems start at the tip-top of an organization, since, as we've discussed before, usually they're not going anywhere (and neither are the Mets so long as they're around). The best we can hope for is that they learn from their mistakes. Peter Gammons, in a recent diatribe that wasn't overtly harsh but included a few rabbit punches along the way, accused Team Wilpon once again of listening to two-bit opinions from everyone except Jim Duquette. Here's hoping that's just true enough to hear the outrage of the fan base and a few of the rational arguments. ("Screw the Wilpons" doesn't really get us anywhere.) Empower Duquette and live with his decisions. Quit trading away promising youth for more immediate results. Formulate a game plan and stick to it, for once. This scattershot misdirection is both infuriating and ineffective.

In the meantime, let's win 4 of the next 6 and spark something positive in Metland. It won't be Rob's Era of Positivity or anything, but you have to start somewhere.

No comments: