As I get ready to watch the New York Football Giants play the Carolina Panthers, in what could be the last game at GIANTS Stadium, I got to thinking how I have no emotional attachment to that Stadium like I had with Shea Stadium, when the last summer of Shea was a six month wake.
Now maybe it’s that fact that I’ve spent many more days at Shea than I have at Giants Stadium, even though I’ve been to many games there in the past 34 years but there is just not that attachment to the Meadowlands like I had with Shea and from the looks of things, I don’t think many Giants fans do either.
A lot of that non-emotion has to do with the fact that there are a lot of Giants fans who have never been to the Stadium. Think about that as Mets fans. For years, there was a huge waiting list for Giants season tickets, in fact season tickets were left in wills and estates to carry over from family to family. I’ve been lucky between my brothers and friends, I usually get to 2 games a year at Giants Stadium but there is a huge population of Giants fans who have never seen Big Blue play live and in person.
When the Last Days of Shea were upon us, the blogs and news media outlets were full of stories by Mets fans of the joy of growing up going to games at Shea Stadium. For all the complaining we Mets fans did about Shea from leaky pipes, to floods in the bathrooms, to no concourse space and on and on, when the last day at the ball park came, we cried like babies. Something tells me there will no tears shed for Giants Stadium today. I guess that’s one more reason why baseball is better than football, much more emotional.
Another Giants related story that had me thinking Mets was the story in the News about Wellington Mara and the day Giants Stadium opened and how happy he was that the Giants finally had their own home. Mr. Mara ran the Giants for years and when his nephew Tim Mara joined him in ownership, the team took a downward turn. I remember my brothers debating the Wellington/Tim Mara spilt as Wellington wanted to build through the draft and Tim was more of a showman and wanted to go after big name players and thus there was a huge spilt. It wasn’t until Pete Rozelle stepped in and told both Mara’s for the good of the NFL they needed to find someone to run the football operations of the team, and get the Giants back as NFL title contenders. Isn’t that where the Mets are today?
Freddy Skill Sets is not involved in the day to day moves of the Mets, he has turned the team over to his son Jeffey, who in turn has David Howard, the noted house shyster as his consigliore, neither one of them know anything about running a baseball team. They have a lame duck GM in Omar Minaya and a lamer duck manager in Jerry Manuel and now have a team with assets of close to $1 billion dollars but a team that no one wants to play for and is disrespected through out baseball. What they need is a George Young, a guy to come in a run the baseball ops the right way, with a plan to build a solid foundation. This is not some small market; pocket the revenue sharing, type of franchise. This is a franchise with outstanding financial and fan support resources, what it lacks is leadership and until young Jeffey and Shyster Dave are removed from the day to day doings of the baseball end, the Mets will continue down the path of failure.
The fan base is not just angry but hugely disappointed in the direction this franchise is headed. The easy thing to do is abandon ship but we never will, this team is too much a part of us to that. Guys like me have to much invested here, but that doesn’t mean as fans we just sit back a take it.
I’d love to sit here and wave blue and orange poms-poms and praise the signing of Kelvin Escobar and R.A Dickey and Ryota Igrashi but there is so much more that needs to be done and I don’t have any faith in the front office to get it done.
I feel sorry for Omar Minaya. His biggest mistake as GM to me was hiring his friends into top jobs. It doesn’t work. From Tony Bernazzard to Ramon Pena to Bingo mgr Mako Oliveras to Julio Franco to Luis Aguayo they all failed at their jobs and they all failed Minaya. Now some of you are saying “see too many Latinos” but if you can look past your bias, you’ll see it’s more of guys that Minaya grew up through the ranks from player to scout to front office person throughout baseball that he surrounded himself with and it could just cost him his job. Add in the fact that Minaya is real old school when it comes to evaluating talent and maybe his way of thinking is outdated in today’s baseball.
Ownership and the front office can try to con us with “the team will be better as all those who were injured will be back healthy “ propaganda but their non-action speaks louder than words and the really need to do something to stem the tide of pessimism that they have cast over the franchise.