IT WAS THE WORST OF TIMES AND THE BEST OF TIMES

Okay I’m thinking a little clearer this morning and after digesting a lot of news from the previous home of the New York Mets I still can’t get over the run of emotions that fell over me and my fellow Mets fans yesterday, so let’s look at the what the day and the season brought us.

 

Really, were you shocked that the Mets lost yesterday? It very easy to kill Scott Schonewise and Luis Ayala but we know what they are, not very good journeymen pitchers and the result yesterday was as expected. No one in the bullpen stepped up after Billy Wagner went down with injury. You can questioned Omar Minaya for not making some magic deal to get a closer but who did you want him to get and at what price? You think teams a ready to help the Mets win? Most teams are like those classless Marlins who couldn’t find the decentcy to leave the field quickly ago the Mets could begin their closing ceremony. That is a direct reflection on manager Freddi Gonzalez who is in charge of a team that if it were disbanded today, no one would give a rat’s ass about.  What Freddi and his little band of douchebags need to remember is at some point the Marlins will be dumping them as they make too much money especially Freddi Gonzalez who will be fired eventually and I bet he will calling Omar Minaya for a job.

 

Maybe the NYPD and the Skill Sets Rent a Cops should have harrased the Marlins off the field the way they were treating Mets fans yesterday. One thing the Skill Sets have to do is work on having the security force treat the customers with respect. Of all the ballparks and arenas I have gone to none are as rude and nasty as the people who work at Shea Stadium, especially the ushers and rent a cops. What is quite amazing is the Skill Sets own the Brooklyn Cyclones and there is no better place to go to watch a game than Keyspan Park where the people who work there are very fan friendly.

 

No need to go over all the scenarios about what the Mets need to do to improve the team even the little privilege prick Jeffey Wilpon knows that the bullpen has to has to be demolished and built from back to front starting with signing K-Rod by any means necessary. I usually hate giveing big money to relievers but with a half decent closer the Mets would have been NL East Champs. With a healthy Billy Wagner, we are making plans for October baseball that’s not a losers lament over injuries it’s just a stone cold fact.

 

Of course Heilman, Schoenweis, Castillo need to go but as I said a week ago if Omar Minaya does not put Carlos Beltran‘s name out there and I think I’d bait another pole with Jose Reyes name on it as well. Again it doesn’t mean you have to or want to move these players but you have to see who grabs the bait.

 

Bring back Carlos Delgado has Mosies Alou written all over it. But it makes sense in that you’d have to give him $4mil to leave and $12mil to stay so for the $8mil difference so it’s worth the risk to keep him.

 

Petey I love you but bye-bye.

 

Even though I’m ok with J-Man coming back to manage the Mets, watching Wally Backman walk the field at Shea has me wondering why not Wally? In fact why not any ex-Met. Look at the coaching staff, not an ex Metsie on it. As much as Old School Dan Warthen did a good job I wouldn’t mind having Bobby Ojeda in the dugout next year.

 

(EDIT: Holy shite, how could I forget HOJO Bad Job outta me )

 

Enough with the negativity and angst and sorrow of the 2008 season let talk about the closing ceremony. Yes, it should have been done before the game as no one was in the mood for celebrating. In fact many people were leaving in the 8th inning THE 8th INNING ARE YOU KIDDING!!!!!!!! (I know I said no more angst) Be that as it may the ceremony was fantastic. As every player was introduced I had a story for each guy because everyone who passed through those bullpen gates I saw in person which led my son to say “Dad, you are really old” Yes, yes I am and yesterday was the only time I was glad to be an old timer.

 

There is no excuse for not mentioning Bobby Valentine’s name and for not including Nelson Doubleday, the Payson-de Roulet Family and even M.Donald Scumbag. They are all vital parts of Mets and Shea Stadium history.

 

Poor George Foster still can get any love at Shea 

 

Of course seeing Tom Seaver, Mike Piazza, and my guy Eddie Kranepool was special and brought me to my feet but the guys who touched me the most were guys like Cleon Jones, who when he was introduced I jumped out of my seat clapping like a trained seal yelling out “Yeah baby, .340 in 1969 that’s what I’m talking about” and having my wife and kids hang their heads like oh God here he goes. When George “The Stork” Theodore came out I felt a rush go though my body because if any player sums up the Mets and the history of this franchise it’s The Stork, gangly, wore glasses, not very good but always tried hard. My son asked me how good the Stork was as a player and I told him he is most remembered as being part of the worst collision of outfielders in baseball history when he and Don Hahn slammed into each other face first. I think that says it all right there.

 

When Doc Gooden came out I felt very emotional. Not just because of the pain and sorrow he has suffered and brought on his family with his addictions problem or for the fact that he threw away a brilliant career. I welled up because I was happy he was home and the fact that I always have the memory of watching him pitch back in the 80’s when Shea was Shea. When a Doc Gooden start was must see baseball. When I had a pony tail ahhhhhh great times.

 

I think it is safe to say that not only is it a lock that the first great event at the Skill Set Pleasure Palace will be the retiring of number 31 and also we can assume that Mike Piazza will be wearing a Mets cap on his HOF plaque.

 

I was glad to see my man Eddie Kranepool get such a nice ovation as he is a forgotten man in Mets history just look at the record books and he still is at the top or in the top 5 or7 in many lifetime offensive categories.

 

The biggest moment though for me yesterday (besides talking with Steve Sommers of WFAN before the game) was talking to Tom Seaver. Yes that’s right I got to talk to The Franchise. It wasn’t a one on one but I‘ll explain.

 

I didn’t want to leave as I said last night so before we got to the exit I stopped at the Lodge section and told my family “one more time please one more time” so they said fine and we went back in. I see a handful of people looking up to the press level and who is leaning out but Tom Seaver and he was having the time of his life. He was joking and smiling and not living up to his reputation as a hard ass. He was talking about Shea and I said to him “Tom I don’t want to leave in fact I’m thinking of becoming a squatter” Seaver laughed and said “I know how you feel it is hard leaving this place but I’ve seen the new park and you won’t be disappointed” Now I didn’t want to have a debate with the Franchise over cost of tickets and food and other stuff as this was not the time for that this was Tom Seaver talking to the flock. I then told Seaver how hard it is to leave here as I spent 44 summers here and it’s tough to let go. Seaver then asks me what my favorite memory was. I told him besides the World Series games I will never forget the Imperfect Game and how I’d love to ring Jimmy Qualls neck. Seaver gave a big hearty laugh and said “You want to ring his neck? How do you think I feel? With that I waved to Seaver and thanked him and said “Will we see you at $iti Field”? “You bet, replied Seaver so with that I turned and left Shea with the thought that the last moment I spent at Shea Stadium was saying so long to Tom Seaver.  On the ride home I thought of what he said and I pictured Seaver in his vineyard working the land and I picture him contemplating the night of July 9th 1969 and the single to LF that broke up the Perfect Game.  

 

Who the hell am I kidding, I’ll be at $iti Field by hook or by crook on opening day beacuase of my addiction to this team and what makes it worse is that they know it too. They know I can’t stay away even when they try to price me out they know I’ll find a way to get to the games. I’m a lost cause. No hope. How many days until pitchers and catchers? 

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