Thursday, October 19, 2006

One More Morning

"In the sky, light is coming, so glad we all have this day
We all want one more morning just to know the night won't stay"
-Steve Winwood

It takes one.

Before you can get two, you need one.

There are no scheduled doubleheaders in the playoffs, so you can't win two games in one day. And you certainly can't win two games at once. So that was the task at hand for the New York Mets today, as we all woke up on Wednesday hoping for one more game.

One more morning.

Honestly folks, I fully intended to stay away from anymore postseason tickets. Considering my 0-5 record in postseason attendance, I wasn't going to seek out any more tickets. After all, I could never forgive myself if I went hard after a ticket for tonight...and had seen the Cardinals celebrate at Shea Stadium. It was bad enough that I witnessed the Yankees spray champagne on our seats...if the Cardinals did the same in my presence I would have probably taken a header off of the upper deck and ended it all.

But then came "The Metmaster".

He came to me with a ticket...and all of a sudden the room turned into the "Creation" painting. The fingers reached out..."Come with me, Metstradamus...My extra ticket is calls out to you for you are not the first choice, but the only choice. You must not fear failure...because tonight, failure is not an option."

And that's when I realized something: As long as I fear jinxing my team, I'll never see a playoff win. Sure, I may be 0-5...but to end a jinx, all it takes is one.

"Lift my eyes to the dawning to see the life start again
Just to see one more morning, just to feel it all begin"

So I took the ticket, and my stomach immediately started in with a few Ozzie Smith backflips for me.

And when Dan Le Batard mentioned on Wednesday's PTI that he was going to watch "Armageddon" on the tube tonight...I thought "Gee, I might watch the same thing tonight...only live."

At that point, Jack Clark started taking some batting practice hacks took a sledgehammer in my belly.

Thank goodness for blogger nation...they were there in full force tonight and I was fortunate to grab some positive energy from them as they met by the Subway Sandwich stand in right field. Where else but the Subway stand would you want to meet, among others, a guy whose writes a blog called "Yes Joe, It's Toasted"?

You can't make this stuff up, people.

But there they were. Toasty (with his artistic department in tow), Mets Grrl, Zoe Rice, Hotfoot, and the Brooklyn Met Fan were all there, along with the incomparable Matt Cerrone wearing the very jersey that the Mets were 36-3 while he was wearing it in attendance. Now that's some positive energy.

We even ran into a blog groupie.

No, seriously! He came up to us and asked if we were..."um, bloggers?", with these wide eyes like he was going to ask us all for our autographs or something.

I have to admit, it kind of made me feel like a bit of a star until he asked who I was. When I told him that I was Metstradamus, he said: "Oh...I've heard of you. I don't really read you." (Who said winning hearts and minds was easy?)

He had his own positive energy going on. He might have gotten it from a bottle in his mom's liquor cabinet while she wasn't looking, but hey...I remember my first beer too.

So with my newfound positivity I went to my seat to join forces with the Metmaster, who could have used some positive energy himself as he shelled out $40 dollars for a parking space rather than park halfway to Montauk. We sat directly in front of two Cardinal fans...one of which was decked in the powder blue Willie McGee model. Great for heckling, bad for being in the way of some flying beer later on.

Of course, John Maine gets into trouble immediately, loading the bases in the first with two men out. The inning would have been worse if not for getting that freakin' midget leadoff hitter David Eckstein (I mean that with admiration and respect David), to ground to third to lead off the game. But after two singles and a hit batsman, Scott Rolen (who is currently embroiled in a hissy fit with his manager), had a chance with the bases loaded. The whole ballgame could have rode on this first inning at bat, especially with an impressionalbe rookie on the mound..

Maine got Rolen to fly to right to end the inning and 56,000 strong exhaled.

"One more day, one more memory, one more link in the chain
We all want one more morning just to feel it all again"
It takes one.

In this case, one batter. One batter to go deep to right field and put the Mets on the scoreboard. The atmosphere went from pensive to festive with one swing of Jose Reyes' mighty stick. So festive, in fact, that I got hit with beer about six innings before I had expected to be hit with beer.

As I am a soothsayer, I let loose with one of my gut predictions before the game. Well, it wasn't really a prediction...more of an admission that for some reason, the name Shawn Green was rattling around in my head. Couldn't figure out why. That is, until the RBI single in the fourth to go up 2-0.

John Maine, meanwhile? Dealin'! Rollin' along, he was...throwing the strikes he saved himself from throwing in Game 2. Maine wound up going 5 and 1/3, which is probably 2 and 1/3 more innings than most outsiders (and some insiders) hoped and/or thought he would go. It's worth bringing this up again:
"The Mets, let's face it, aren't going to win any pitchers' duels. That would require them to have pitchers who actually can shut a team down." -John Donovan, SI.com

For clarification, those five innings + one third that John Maine chucked were scoreless.

Tony LaRussa is a genius. I'm sure he'd tell you that if you asked him.

But if he was so much of a genius, you wouldn't think that he would entrust a still close game to Braden Looper, would you?

Boos greeted our former closer in the seventh as lefty Jose Valentin...the same kind of lefty that Braden Looper can't get out...bunts into an out. Then Endy Chavez smacks a Looper pitch into a hard out. But just when you thought Braden was going to come into his former house and shut his former teammates down, Michael Tucker pinch hit a single in front of a diving Soul Patch Spiezio.

"Looooooooo-peeeeeeeer."

Tucker then stole second.

"Looooooooo-peeeeeeeer!!!"

Jose Reyes then hit an infield single.

"LOOOOOOOOO-PEEEEEEEER!!!"

Reyes then stole second.

"LOOOOOOOOO-PEEEEEEEER!!!"

Paulie Lo Duca then drove both runs home with a single past Looper that spun him around like he was Charlie Brown, giving the Mets a comfortable (or what should have been a comfortable) 4-0 lead.

The chants only got louder from there. Braden never had a chance.

I always suspected that the Mets bandwagon grew exponentially with their success this season. But I never...ever...suspected this:


Wow. Freddy Sez. At Shea. With a pro-Mets sign at that...wandering around Shea Stadium.

Was this a sign of things to come?

When Billy Wagner entered Game 6 and started getting smacked around again, I thought maybe it was a sign. And then I got really nervous. So nervous that the thought of walking the tiny So Taguchi with first base open and two outs in the ninth actually entered my mind. That's silly, right?

Right???

Wrong.

Because once again, So Taguchi played the role of "Thorn in Billy Wagner's Side" by smacking a double to left field. Hopefully it isn't going to be a leading role, but listed just under "Key Grip" in the credits of this NLCS. The next batter...the diminutive Eckstein, came up as the tying run. Could he actually go deep off Wagner and tie this game? Could my postseason jinx rear it's ugly head in the most unbelievable of fashions?

Thankfully, not quite.

"Why does a game that we so thoroughly dominated all of a sudden feel like a stay of execution?" -The Metmaster
I don't know Metmaster, and I don't want to know. What I do know is that this series is tied. And because you and I joined forces and combined our powers, my postseason win total now stands at one...and it takes one to kill a jinx. If we can slay that dragon, then all obstacles are possible to overcome...including the obstacle that the Mets will face Thursday night. It is possible even if the only way to combat that obstacle is to trot out "The Million Pitcher March", which the Mets will have to do.

In the arms we were born in, in the arms that will take us home
We all want one more morning, then we'll take the night to come
We have one more morning. And that, my friends, is all it takes.

35 comments:

Cernunous said...

If your jink is broken, can I break mine tomorrow night and call you during the game?

Metstradamus said...

Let's not get crazy.

adoniram said...

I didn't bother to DVR the game tonight because I knew it was gonna be on everywhere. I was gonna have to live and die by ESPN radio and muted televisions above beer soaked bars.

But I did strike a deal tonight with the manager of the club we were playing.

"Hey, can you please give me updates on the score of the game?"

Answer:

"I'll announce it inning by inning if you'll sing the Meet The Mets song at the end of the show."

Me:

"Sure, just let me know"


"Acapella..." he demanded.

At that point my faith hitched for a moment as I thought of the humilation of singing the Mets anthem in front of dozens of Met hating Texans after a loss. Well, I was either overrun with confidence or intoxicated by the idea of gloating at amplified levels and took the deal.

It turned out to be a very cheerful show.

Also, one hundred or so unsuspecting residents of San Marcos, TX learned where to bring the kiddies and bring the wife.

It's all even boys. If you had told me in March that we could be playing one game and if the Metskies won, we'd be in the World Series I would have taken it in a moment regardless of the opponent or our starting pitcher.

We've got everything we could have realistically hoped for so far. It all boils down to Thursday night.

Let's go Mets!!!

Anonymous said...

Dear Fred Wilpon,
Embrace the pinstripes, the blue and orange. It must have been the traditional Mets uniforms, they were truly inspirational.

Jerry Seinfeld once said fans root for the uniform, since players come and go so quickly.

Last night I got to root for the right uniform--and it was very satisfying.

Ed in Westchester said...

A "friend" asked yesterday if I would no longer see you as my "hero" as you were going to the game, bringing along the 0-5 mark.
I had no worries.

jabair said...

do not try this again metstra...

jabair said...

damn i hated thos powder blue cardinals jerseys..

if anyone has any extra tixx, im 1-1 in playoff games, the victory came against the giants in 2000 where benitez gave it up against j.t. snow but we came back and franco caught bonds looking on called third strike.

let me know in advance cause its gonna take atleast 6 hours for me to fly back to NY

airhash@charter.net

Mike said...

Jinx shminx.

The Mets always win game sixes at home follwoing 4-2 losses when they face the Greatest Pitcher In The History Of The Universe, the guy that can't possibly lose.

Except he does.

Every time. And with Calvin Loo-, I mean Braden Looper in the pen, I think 53 year old Ray Knight could take him deep to open the 7th inning.

Next victim: The Gambler.

k5nyc said...

If I meet you at a game I'd act like I read your blog. Maybe even buy you a beer

Unser said...

Really great post! You must be the first blogger ever to cite to Steve Winwood lyrics (from the "Roll with It" album , of all things!) and a Michaelangelo painting in the same post!

Shea was completely ROCKING last night. I am so hoarse today. My wife actually shed tears when Maine left to that standing O.

Shawn Green . . . keep him in mind tonight too.

Ans yes, definitely, stay with the classic pinstripes and blue hats!!!

Ollie Perez on three days rest . . . thoughts? Do we have more faith in him than in Trachsel on normal rest with D. Oliver waiting in the wings?

Kate said...

Did anyone take a picture of all the bloggers together? That would be quite the collectors item!

Sigh.. anyone else having a hard time getting work done today?

jabair said...

ANYBODY KNOW WHAT HAPPENED TO THE GUY WHO USED TO SIT BEHIND THE 3RD BASE DUGOUT AND USED TO BRING GREAT SIGNS TO THE BALL PARK??

YOU GUYS KNOW WHO IM TALKING ABOUT??

Shea Gadfly said...

I was there last night. It was the best kind of chaos I've ever seen.

I actually sit in section 9 during the regular season (Sat.plan) and I got two tickets (game 2, ouch & game 7, here we go). But after agonizing at home Tuesday night, I couldn't stay in and miss game six. A buddy of mine hooked me up too and I will be eternally grateful to him for sharing such a great day in Mets history with me.

Metmaster is definitely a good friend to convince, capture and carry you along to a game that I think has turned the tide.

Even though Greenie looks like he is running in quicksand in the outfield, he sure had a big hit last night (and having a pretty good postseason with the bat).

And is Paulie somehow involved in every rally that the Mets get going. The guy is a freakin' animal!

Great stuff Metsra, I'll keep you and Greenie in my thoughts tonight and hopefully the results will be just as excellent.

LETS GO METS!!!

Shea Gadfly said...

Oh and after the game we stopped by to see Gary & Ron doing post game live...It was a riot. They really seemed to be getting a kick out of how loud and crazy the fans were...what a night!

Ed in Westchester said...

BELIEVE

Ed in Westchester said...

jabair - Sign Guy? From the 70's?
I think he has passed on.

Metstradamus said...

Ed,

I just saw that 70's sign guy on "Mets Weekly"...he was on with the current sign guy.

Toasty Joe said...

Dying to hear Darth Marc's take on "Freddy Sez" showing up at Shea. Wow.

Anonymous said...

I have a giant arrow that points to the current sign guy and reads "what he said" look for it tonight field level first row last two seats in left field!

Anonymous said...

sorry... right field

Sean said...

Metstra,

I am considering wearing a blue and orange felt soul patch glued to my chin tonight. Thoughts?

The Metmaster said...

"Veni, Vidi, Vici"

Like Caesar, "we came, we saw, we conquered." It was indeed our finest hour.

Metstradamus implored "Metmaster, if I could but touch the hem of your garment I would be healed". After touching the holy Mets sweatshirt I replied "Your faith has saved you" You are healed Mestradamus. I am who I am. I was at the Cub game in 1969 with the black cat. I was at Shea on September 24, 1969 when Joe Torre bounced into a game-ending double play to give the Mets the first NL Eastern Division title, I cut classes in 1973 to see the Harrelson/Rose bruhaha, and then the next day to yell "Rose Blows" while sitting in left field, and then the clincher the following day when the Reds wives were forced to abandon their field level seats in the 9th inning and led through the bullpen causing one to wail to the press "This place is worse than Vietnam!". I was at all 7 games(Flushing AND Boston)in '86. I am the opposite polarity of Metstradamus. I've enjoyed more good times than bad. You are healed my friend. Go forth and multiply, spreading the good news, for the Mets have arisen! Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.

"Failure is not an option"
-Gene Kranz, Apollo 13

A Friend of Mr. Glass' said...

Mestradamus,

Just curious, but what time was this blogger's summit yesterday? I read about it on Metsblog and stopped by the Subway (this was around 7:30) but didn't see anyone there.

Great post by the way. Was in Section 46, Row V last night. Just about the worst seat in the joint. And it was perfect.

Anonymous said...

Who the hell is "Freddy Sez" and why is there a picture of an idiot wearing a Yankees jacket at Shea?

Seriously, why do we care about this moron? It takes a special kind of idiot to wear Yankees clothing to a Mets-Cardinals game.

The Metmaster said...

Anonymous:

"Freddy Sez" is a Yankee Stadium institution. He roams the stadium clanging a fry pan with a spoon. He has a poster with a "Freddy Sez" quote on it; always some kind of Yankee propaganda. He has been there for ages and does not have tickets! The Yankees essentially look the other way and let him in. He is a beloved character up there. For him to show up at Shea last night (sans pan and spoon) with a pro-Mets poster ("Freddy Sez: Mets Can Win These Two Games") is almost like Steinbrenner showing up at Shea wearing a Mets hat! It was shocking. People were stupified.

Ed in Westchester said...

re - sign guy -
shows what I know.
Apologies.
Glad he is still around.

Metstradamus said...

Friend,

We were all pretty much gone by probably about 7:30 or 7:40. Everybody was nervous and wanted to get to their seats. I was nervous and wanted to buy souveniers, and then get to my seat.

Mets Guy in Michigan said...

Beautiful Metstra!

I'm going to be at Game One in Detroit!

If any of the blogging faithful are going to be there, shoot me a line!

(Now that your jinx is broken, you will be allowed in, too, Metstra.)

Metstradamus said...

Dave, it was a great sight seeing all the pictures of me with the red circle and line through it that said "DO NOT ADMIT" come down once and for all.

Darth Marc said...

The Imperial Council is considering banishment to the Phantom Zone for our Beloved Freddie Sez. He has obviously taken ill with an incurable form of infidelitis and can't be cured in this realm of existence.

Actually a more appropos comaparison is if your Sign Guy or the Cubs Woo-Woo guy were to go to Yankee Stadium or US Cellular and rooted for the Yankees and White Sox. Or Bill Simmons wearing a Jeter jersey.

Steinbrenner wearing a Mets Hat is akin to God drinking a beer in hell with Lucifer with a shirt that says "Damnation Rocks!"

To whoever brainwashed our Freddie. Goddamn you. Goddamn you all to hell!!!!!

jabair said...

didnt i tell you to go update your myspace page?

jabair said...

im not talkin about the "GET R DONE" sign guy down past the right feild foul pole.

there was a guy who used to sit a few rows behind the third base dugout.

not the guy from the 70's, this guy is more recent, late 90's to early 2000's. african american guy in his late 30's early 40's

he once had a sign that said "NY LUMBER COMPANY"

im a transplant mets fan so i watch all games online or on tv.

Metstradamus said...

Jabair,

The guy you're thinking of was on the same Mets Weekly segment as the sign guy from the 70's. I don't know if he still sits at Shea or not.

jabair said...

i saw the blogger pow wow group pic over @ cerrone's blog, which one are you??

Anonymous said...

Man, this one hurts. A lot.

Anyone who knows me knows I live and die by the Mets. It's been a magical season. And a season that, unfortunately, ended last night.

The first thing that comes to mind is that good pitching always beats good hitting. In a series where the Mets started John Maine and finished with Oliver Perez, it was the terrific lineup that let them down.

It wasn't because they didn't have the chances, the Mets left over 10 runners on base last night. But when the Suppan and Wainwright got themselves into sticky situations, they shut the Mets down. Two bases loaded situations, zero runs for the Mets.

There were some things I was very happy and proud about with this team. They showed an incredible amount of heart. Their two top starting pitchers went down within a week of the start of the playoffs, and the young guys stepped up terrifically. I was also a big critic of Willie Randolph, but just about every move he made, whether by the numbers or not, seemed to work. Mota in against Duncan, leaving Perez in last night. He showed me guts, courage and a belief in his guys. This won't be the last time Willie gets his team to the verge of the World Series.

And the Cards beat the Mets with their best player at the plate. They beat Beltran. You have to tip your hat to Wainwright. I couldn't tell what broke harder: his curveball or my heart after the game. They beat us fair and square.

And by the way, have you ever seen a better play at a bigger time than when Endy Chavez absolutely STOLE what would have been the go-ahead runs in the 6th inning? Absolutely spectacular. I would have loved for the Mets to win with that catch being the impetus. That play will be on the highlight reels for years to come.

It's alright boys. I'm proud of you. It's been a great year.