Who are the Mets?
I didn’t know a couple of days ago, when I saw them lose a genuinely bizarre, almost great, ultimately disheartening game against a last place club.
But now I know who they are. They’ve shown me this weekend. They are the kind of team that CAN beat a last place club.
So what happens if this season Santana is Santana, Maine is Maine, Perez stays in his new groove, Pelfrey pitches like he pitched on Thursday, Pedro comes back, and the Mets hit, say, as well as they hit last year? 95 wins, easy. I can dream, can’t I? But it would be hard to say that anything I’m talking about is improbable. There’s a good calculus here. Even if Pelfrey doesn’t do as well as I’d hope, or even if Pedro can’t stay healthy, it is perfectly possible that the Mets could hit better than they did last year.
If you’re logical about the Mets, you see that there are a great many reasons to hope. It’s just been hard to be logical about the Mets, because it is hard to get past trauma. We are a wounded crowd of desperately hopeful people expecting failure. It’s up to the Mets to cure us of this. They did this to us. They owe us.
Can you imagine this story? A season of redemption. A season of joy. A season in which things finally go right and the Yankees, with a pitching staff full of holes and horrors, finally can’t come back. It’s a season in which New York feels as Yankee stadium sounded tonight, with that increasingly steady roar of joy tinged with surprise.
There will be chemistry. There will be energy. There will be resilience. Or this post can stay forever in my archives to haunt me.
This is what it is to follow baseball. It’s to be reaching towards a future just beyond your grasp. It’s to beat on against the current, to believe that we can actually have, for the first time in a long time, something commensurate to our capacity for wonder.