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Tough Crowd

Joyce MandelkernTuesday, May 1, 2007
By Joyce Mandelkern

There were 39,000 people at Shea last night that I did not recognize. My Shea brethren, for the most part, disgusted me. When did this happen? When did we Met fans become so intolerant and demanding of our hometown heroes? When did we become so arrogant that we expect to win every game in exemplary fashion and that nothing short of perfection will be accepted? Who do we think we are? Have we become so smug with winning just one division title that we have forgotten where we have come from and what makes baseball really the great and frustrating game it really is?

I sat there and I was as upset as anyone. I saw the wheels come off in the 3rd inning. I saw the poor defense and the men left stranded time and time again. But did I boo David Wright? Of course not. And those of you who did should be ashamed of yourselves. This crowd turned on the entire team in a New York minute. They booed David, they booed Delgado, they booed Easley, they booed everyone and when they weren't booing, they were moaning and groaning. Actually, I may have moaned on the dropped balls myself.

I sat there with my arms folded and a frown on my face because I was upset. I am always upset when we are playing poorly. I am always upset and in a bad mood when we lose. Granted, I was in no mood to sing "Take Me Out to the Ball Game" during the 7th inning stretch or "Sweet Caroline" in the 8th inning, but this crowd was out for blood. The crowd even turned on a man (rightfully so) who refused to give a foul ball back to a little boy who had dropped it by shouting in unison "give it back'! The little boy was crying hysterically and security finally brought him another one.

The weird vibe at Shea last night almost made me long for the good 'ole days when no one expected to win and if we did it was a nice bonus to a night at the ball game. Almost. I want to win. I want to win badly. But c'mon guys. Relax. These aren't the years when we were 35 games under .500 and we have to let management know that we aren't going to stand for this anymore. I think that everyone knows we want to win. I don' think booing our team is going to help David break out of his slump or make Easley feel any better about dropping that ball in the 3rd.

I hate to scold all of you who booed. I know you have every right to boo if you want. And believe me, I know how much those tickets cost and you have paid for your right to boo if you so chose. I was just taken aback last night by the sheer negativity in the crowd. Yes, I stayed till the end. No, I did not think we would win at any point last night. I did not think we would win once I heard that Chan Ho Park was starting. Yet, I try to be supportive. Try and look at the bigger picture. We're a good team now - remember?

Ok - two other points and then I'm done. I wish Delgado would consider bunting up the 3rd baseline when the shift is on (I know he did it once this season successfully) because it is an easy way for him to get on base. This would've helped in the 9th especially, when we needed base runners. Also, I noticed for the first time, that there is a sign at Shea indicating that the Hospital for Special Surgery is the Mets official hospital. I don't think that it is a good thing that our team has an official hospital. Seems like bad karma to me.

We will try again to night folks. I will be there and let's try and behave better this time - please!

About Joyce: I am an insanely passionate die-hard Mets fan since 1962 who is also a season ticket holder and usually can't bear to look and buries her head in her hands or starts pacing when I'm home when things get tense...   Read More -->

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Comments (8)

Great post - I couldn't agree more. Do the fans who boo really think its going to make anyone play better - especially pitchers trying to find the strike zone. I admit I have expressed my displeasure vocally in the past but it is usually researved for players who aren't trying. To each his own - I just think it is counter-productive.

Joyce, I couldn't agree more. I get a lot of flack from younger Met fans because I tend to see things as they are; not as I would like them to be or how others would like me to see them! But, I've never been a huge fan of booing everytime any Met screws up (I'd be all booed-out after almost 45 years!); I think that is usually counter-productive. That said, there are certainly times that I have understood and agreed with certain players being booed, and like you, I understand that people pay good money to go to the games and are entitled to boo if they so choose. Now, I can groan and yell (especially at home) with the best of them, and last night's game gave me ample opportunity to do both! I live in Florida, so I am unable to get to Shea anymore to feel the vibe of the crowd, but watching from home, I get a bad vibe from the team. I haven't been able to put my finger on it, but something doesn't "feel" right with this team, despite the competitive record. Granted, Wright and Delgado slumping may be a lot of it, but the mojo doesn't appear to be there (and I've been a fan since 1962, so I've seen a lot). Hopefully they get the injuries out the way early, and none of them linger for too long (although Valentin could be out awhile, and the Mets will miss him more than anyone is comfortable with). I understand I might be wading into dangerous waters here, but I'd like to see D. Wright cut back on some of his personal appearances and promos, and get back to just being a ball field "rat". He has an awful lot on his plate, and since he spends so much time at the park, that extra time spent doing interviews, commercials, appearances, etc. come from somewhere. I would hope the Met fans ease up on him a little though; he's looked very bad, but booing him isn't the way to support him through this slump.

Joe, forgot to give you kudos about booing being counter-productive; I agree.

Great post...couldn't have said it better myself...so I reposted it, linked and attributed it to you, and agreed.

Us in Sec. 22 of the UD did, however, get to see a highly intoxicated man in a 3-piece suit fall down at least 4 rows of seats and then proceed to try and explain it to his boss or co-workers...good times in a bad game.

keep the posts coming.. you have a great take on things and the reader (me) allways seems to feel like they are sitting next to you....

i dont agree with you about the boos.. yeah its a tough crowd, welcome to NY. David knows we like him, the boos dont say we dont like you, they say you gotta shape up because the braves are not going anywhere and you need to shape up because you are killing every rally we have...

and along those same lines...

i DO agree with you about delgado... in the 9th inning, we needed him on first, and they were basically giving it to him. The way they play him he could break joe d's hit streak...

To my wife Joyce - Babe- Keep up the great posts. I don't even bother to read the daily newspapers anymore. You have a far superior ability to communicate than all the beat writers combined. Keep up the great work. I love you, Pete

I'd say the boos worked on David Wright. I think, you play in NY, you've gotta perform, or you get booed. Especially a kid like that getting so much face time. Step up buddy.

Sounds harsh, but they really are getting paid a lot of money to play a game-- play it right, please.

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