As a "somewhat" loyal Mets fan, I can officially say that I have given up on them for the 2010 season. No, I haven't abandoned them as my quote, unquote favorite team, but I have lost all hope on their playoff chances this year. To put it simply, the numbers just don't add up for them anymore. At 51-50, the Mets would pretty much have to win 40 out of their last 60 and hope that everyone else plays .500 baseball the rest of the way.
First of all, I don't think they have the weapons to go 40-20 and they would need roughly 4 teams (including the Philadelphia Phillies) to tail off-- and the Phillies are surging, currently on a 7 game winning streak. With the Braves holding strong and the Phillies making a run, it is safe to say, three's a crowd in the NL East.
And the much-hyped return of Carlos Beltran has been hogwash, so far. Since Beltran's debut after the All-Star break, the Mets have gone a disastrous, 3-10. Prior to the All-Star break, they were a decent, 48-40, and in the Wild-Card hunt-- so maybe Beltran should have taken the year off. Go figure!
So I guess to paraphrase a famous philosopher from the Windy City, "anyone can have a bad QUARTER-century". Yes Mets fans, that is where we stand-- soon it'll be a full quarter-century since our "impossible dream" 1986 world championship.
And if we don't right this ship soon, we too are going to have our ghosts take on lives of their own. Our grandchildren will be talking about Armando Benitez' blown save in Game 1 of the 2000 World Series and Carlos Beltran's 3-pitch, game-ending strikeout with the bases loaded, in Game 7 of the 2006 NLCS, after Yadier Molina's crushing 9th inning home run. Yes folks, those will be our grand children's "what-ifs", just like the now-generation of Cubs fans and Indians fans talk about their closet full of "what-ifs".
But for the record, they are still mathematically alive and they have shown they can go on some hot streaks-- so maybe Jerry Manuel has something up his sleeves. Who knows? But unfortunately, this Mets fan has lost all hope, 'cause I don't see them going on a Chicago White Sox-like run. Nah, I don't think so!
But from a historical perspective, are we still in decent shape? Yeah, I guess. We're still 1 of 16 teams who have won a championship in the last 25 years. Not bad, I guess, since 14 teams have gone title-less in the past quarter century. But as it stands, we are second from the bottom of the totem poll, with only the 1985 world champion Kansas City Royals beneath us and as soon as the 2011 season begins, they too will fall out of the "25-year radius" and we'll be at the bottom.
And if we don't right this ship soon, we will be heading towards the "half-century and more" neighborhood.
I just hope the Cubs and Indians have a bed to spare....
Cartoon photo courtesy of Sean Delonas/NY Post