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!