SOMEONE ELSE FOR A CHANGE by Tom Brennan
As Met fans, we've had our exciting miracle finishes. 1969, 1986, 2015. But we've had an awful lot of times when things went south, imploded, like the year the Mets led the Phils by 7 with 17 games to go and bit the dust.
Meanwhile, across town during the Jeter/Rivera era, it often seemed things almost always went right for them when it went wrong for us...like the World Series game where the Mets' Todd Zeile's ball hit the top of the fence and stayed in and lollygagging Timo Perez got thrown out at the plate and the whole series swung in the Yanks' direction.
Last night, though, in a pretty darned must win game for the Yanks, the Yanks behaved like the Mets of yore - THEY CHOKED. Leading the Red Sox going into the 8th, Big Papi (who is the Yanks' Chipper Jones) goes deep with his 537th (passing Mickey Mantle, an ominous sign) to make it 5-2 Yanks.
Betances in the 9th has a three run lead, but slowly gets into deeper and deeper trouble, and then John Sterling bellyaches over a check swing by Hanley Ramirez that the Cliché Man was sure was a strike. Instead, a favorable 3-1 count for Hanley, and Ramirez takes advantage by dropping a game-winning 3 run shot on the Yanks and down they went. As Dr. Smith used to say on the 1960's show Lost in Space, "Oh, the pain, the pain."
Met fans certainly remember many such painful moments. But this time, it happened to SOMEONE ELSE FOR A CHANGE. Which made me smile. I contacted my brother and filled him in on what happened to the Yanks. He told me he was REALLY smiling. It happened to the other guys!
I know, I know, we shouldn't gloat. Can't help it, though - I just hope the bad news does not somehow show up in Metsville. Lousy teams on the schedule, hopefully many happy wins from now until year end, and no bad news.
Hopefully, Matz, deGrom, Duda, Lagares, and Flores are healthy and ready for the rest of the season (and post-season). Hopefully, Bruce and d'Arnaud can rediscover the magic. Hopefully, Lugo and Gsellman will continue to excel. Hopefully Thor remains supernatural, and hopefully we get to see the Fat Wonder, Bartolo Colon, carried off the field after recording the last out of the World Series.
Let's sweep the Twinkies and move on, and let the bad stuff happen to SOMEONE ELSE FOR A CHANGE.