Tag Archives: Mr. Met

The push to the MLB playoffs: the tale of one city, and the fail of another

I. Philadelphia

Watching the Phillies tonight, I observed in myself a strange phenomenon. (Editor’s note: He wasn’t wearing any pants). I wasn’t concerned. I wasn’t flipping my shit that they were losing 10-4. It wasn’t bothering me that they were about to drop two against the Braves and lose the series. I was watching the entire game in an almost zen-like state, as though there was little in the outside world that was going to shake my unwavering belief that the Phillies were still going to make the playoffs.

This worried me.

This isn’t a Philadelphia attitude. Now, I don’t want to pigeonhole every Philadelphia fan into one attitude – that’s far too simplistic. But I don’t think you can deny that a large population of Philly fans watch every game with a certain amount of tension and doubt; countless failures will do that to a fan base. And truthfully, I have always felt that Philadelphia teams played at their best when they were left for dead and had to play catch-up, especially the Phillies. It was as though they themselves were motivated by the very tension that regularly adds years to the lives of Philly fans.

Some may say that this is a sign of inexperience, and that may be true. In Philly, we call it character. (Editor’s note: And anybody that says otherwise is a frickin’ schmuck, ya know whadda mean?) We’re not used to being the front runner, no matter what J-Roll says. Had I, after the Phillies swept the Brewers and started their hot streak, suddenly been lulled into a false sense of security?

And, more alarming then this, had the Phillies themselves done the same thing? Had they lost their urgency?

This didn’t seem right. I still worry about every game the Phillies play. I don’t take any NL East teams lightly, and I’m certainly worried about the pesky Nationals. I dreaded seeing the Marlins, and though I believed the Phillies would play better against the Braves, I knew they were no joke. So I hadn’t somehow developed the idea that the Phillies, of their own volition, were guaranteed to make the playoffs. Something else was keeping me cool and relaxed.

I didn’t realize what it was until I flipped to ESPN after the Phillies game.

II. New York

I won’t go into the nitty-gritty of the Mets-Cubs game. All I really need to illustrate my point is the bottom of the ninth inning, game tied at six. David Murphy had led off the inning with a triple, and the Mets seemed destined to take the game and slide 1/2 game behind the Phillies. A sacrifice fly or a well-placed hit would score the winning run. And they couldn’t do it. David Wright, in my opinion the Mets best player, and one of the best all-around players in baseball, struck out. After two intentional walks, the Mets only managed a grounder to second for a force at the plate, and another strike-out. The Cubs scored three in the next inning, and won the game.

And suddenly, it hit me – my feeling of zen was completely derived from my complete lack of faith in the Mets ability to win a big game. After Aramis Ramirez hit his two-run homer to extend the lead to 9-6 in the top of the 10th, I literally laughed out loud. (Editor’s note: Lucy, grab the haloperidol, pronto). Not in a mocking sort of way, but more like how you laugh when you have an epiphany and suddenly everything seems right with the world again.

And you know, for the briefest of moments, I truly felt for Mets fans. I know that sinking feeling they have in their gut; that feeling was a fairly regular part of my adolescence supporting Philadelphia teams. Yet this feeling was quickly replaced by a far more sinister realization – I enjoyed watching the Mets blow this game almost as much as I do watching the Phillies win one. Maybe that’s unsportsmanlike, I don’t know, but its also the nature of rivalries, and this has certainly become one.

III. Conclusion

So, in thinking about this, I have decided that I would like to take Mr. Met out to the bars and buy him exactly two beers. Beer one – the “I’m sorry this happened to you” beer. I recognize the plethora of unrecognized potential in the Mets, and how this often leads them toward a spiral of heart-wrenching failure. Cheer up, Mr. Met – someday, somewhere over the rainbow, they may figure it out.

But beer two is an “I appreciate you” beer. You may be trapped in a whirlwind of your own underachievement, but thanks for being such a good friend. When I need something, like a loss that keeps you a game back of the Phillies in the loss column and ties you in the wildcard standings with the Brewers, you always come through. You’re a good friend, Mr. Met, and I drink to you.

Fear the Nationals, Phillies fans. But thank God for the Mets.

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Filed under MLB, Phillies

The Week in Review

No-Show of the Week

You know, I almost feel bad doing this, mostly because he seems like a genuinely good guy. But Kyle Kendrick has been absolutely killing the Phillies, and he did it again this week. His line against the Marlins on Tuesday: 1 1/3 innings, 6 hits, 2 walks, 7 runs! Wait, did you catch that? Hold on, let me give that to you again. 1 1/3 innings, 6 hits, 2 walks, 7 runs! (Editor’s note: Could you repeat it one more time?) 1 1/3 innings, 6 hits, 2 walks, 7 runs! Kyle, baby, we need you to step it up. (Editor’s note: Insert 70’s soul music in the background here). I know we boo sometimes, sugar, but it’s because we care – because we need you. Just give us a few more quality starts, and we won’t boo you no more. Please, please don’t do us no harm, Kyle – we can’t bear it no mo’. (Editor’s note: The Pundit is so tender, isn’t he?)

Stud of the Week

M-V-P! Well, maybe. Ryan Howard has been hotter than a pudding wrestling match between Jessica Alba and Jessica Biel lately. (Editor’s note: Ah, the clash of the Jessicas. This claim, of course, is absolutely absurd. Nothing is hotter than that. And pudding is delicious.). His line for the week: 12-34 (.353), 8 runs scored, 14 RBI’s, 4 HR’s, 4 doubles. The big fella just might carry the Phils into the postseason all by himself. He either scored or knocked in 18 of the Phillies 57 runs this week, a cool 32%. That, people, is MVP production. Jimmy Rollins has been ridiculous lately as well, setting the table and scoring runs like the Jimmy of last year. I give it to Howard by a nose because it has seemed that, with runners on, he has been completely locked in, but Rollins comes a close second.

My All-Encompassing Thought of the Week

Monday Night Football, when the Eagles are playing, and especially when its against the Cowbitches, requires a special sort of preparation. First, it is important to watch with a group of people, to maximize the energy and positive karma for the good guys. Make sure that, if you have any lucky jerseys or hats or boxers (Editor’s note: I never leave home without my lucky Eagles Speedo), you are wearing them for the game. While a professional spread isn’t necessary, one should be offering or offered with appropriate football cuisine: hot wings, pizza, french fries, veggies and dip, potato chips, one of those 17 foot long hoagies, those little pepperoni’s and cheese trays, etc. Greasiness is next to godliness. Beer. And maybe some more beer. Plus, the beer. That all goes without saying. But don’t be afraid to up the ante a bit. Make yourself a T.O. voodoo doll. Randomly start up the E-A-G-L-E-S EAGLES chant. It might be best to start this early in the day – nothing says “Hey, I’m an ambitious and enthusiastic worker” like doing the Eagles chant all day long during work. That’s pretty much a guaranteed raise, trust me. Full body paint is acceptable, unless you’re excessively hairy and/or packing the ol’ gut keg. Go crazy, people. (Editor’s note: Who does The Pundit hang out with?)

Painfully Specifiic Thought of the Week

Pat Burrell is having a bizarro world version of his season last year, but in reverse. Last year, he struggled early in the year, and came on late – this year, he was on fire early in the year, and has since disappeared. But look at his numbers from the two years: 77 runs, 121 hits, 26 doubles, 30 homers, 97 RBI’s, 114 walks, 120 K’s, .256 AVG last year, compared with 68 runs, 123 hits, 30 doubles, 30 homers, 77 RBI’s, 94 walks, 127 K’s, .250 AVG. His walks and RBI’s are each down, but everything else is pretty much spot on. Just in reverse. I’m not sure what it means, but can you imagine if Pat the Bat could produce consistently for an entire year? He’d be a force to be reckoned with.

Moment of the Week

How ’bout them Phillies, sweeping the Brewers in 4 straight games? The Phillies had the look of a playoff team, and the Brewers had the look of a team that was just hanging on for dear life. It’s like when you’re at the bar, and you see a guy trying to run game on a woman, but she seems half-interested and he’s refusing to take the hint. Then, another guy checks her out and they do the whole “we’ll talk for awhile but we’re going to hook up later” eye contact sex-glance. He starts in, and the first guy sees what’s happening, and makes a drastic move, like asking her to dance or seeing if she wants another drink, but all three know that that this guy is old news and the new guy is moving in for the kill. Think of the Wildcard as the hot chick, the Brewers as Mr. Old News, and the Phillies as Johnny Smooth. They know what to do; they’ve done this before, while the Brewers blew it last year and have the look of a team that might blow it again. Of course, if the Phillies keep playing their cards right, they may be able to flip the Wildcard for her even hotter friend, the Division Title. God, she’s sexy. The Mets have been suave thus far, but they couldn’t close before – here’s hoping they get too drunk and start humping her leg on the dance floor or something. (Editor’s note: Let’s get Mr. Met plastered!)

Go get ’em, birds. E-A-G-L-E-S EAGLES!!!

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Filed under Eagles, MLB, NFL, Phillies, The Week in Review