Mets Phony-Spin: Still Ignoring Giants

Wow. I can’t believe it. It’s as if New York never had a team that won 10 pennants and played at the Polo Grounds!

Green seats? Really? Green Seats are the shout out to the Giants? I’d like to thank the Orioles for honoring the Giants too.
Giants fans won’t be forgotten at Citi Field
Ken Davidoff

Gary Mintz of South Huntington, a Giants fan dating back to their days in the Polo Grounds, e-mailed me last week with this concern:”At the meeting of the New York Giants Baseball Nostalgia Society [recently], many of the members (all in their 60s through 80s) feel slighted that Mr. Wilpon has made Citi Field look like Ebbets Field and are honoring Jackie Robinson with the rotunda.”Granted, he is the owner of the team, and the one who pays the bills.

But the old-timers feel that since the Mets took the orange of the Giants when they were formed, something in the stadium should honor the N.Y. Giants, whether it be a section or the like.”That seemed like a reasonable question, so I took it to Mets COO Jeff Wilpon Tuesday. And Wilpon took me to Citi Field itself, to convey the message that, while the Dodgers – Fred Wilpon’s favorite team as a Brooklyn youth – do get the majority of the love, you long-time Giants fans were not forgotten.While I’m not quite old enough to have made it to the Polo Grounds, it seems that Mintz and his fellow Giants loyalists will be heartened by two elements of the new, impressive ballpark:The seats are dark green, just like those at the Polo Grounds.

(WHAT??? Are you kidding me??? Green Seats = Remember The Giants??? Please.)

This serves a direct tribute to the Mets’ first home, according to Dave Howard, the team’s executive vice president of business operations.Citi Field’s outfield features a plethora of unique angles and wall heights, as did the Polo Grounds. Consider this more of an indirect shout-out. “We looked at pictures of the Polo Grounds that made you think about it,” Wilpon said.Wilpon wanted me to see the outfield because it was hard for him to put into words, and even after seeing it, it’s difficult to describe it to you. The key area is right-centerfield. That’s where the fence slams on the breaks and takes a sharp turn. It’s not as deep as Fenway Park’s “triangle” in centerfield. It’s more of a right angle than a triangle. It should prove challenging for outfielders, and memorable for fans.Rightfield also has the upper-deck overhang in fair territory, reminiscent of the old Tiger Stadium, that should be manna to lefty pull hitters who can regularly put the ball in the air.The heights of the walls, too, stand out. The fence rises as high as 18 feet in left-centerfield, where it’s 379 feet from home plate, and then down to eight feet in dead center, which rests 408 feet from the batter’s box. In rightfield, where it’s about 370 feet for a homer, it’s back up to 14 feet.It’s anything but a perfect replica of the Polo Grounds. But it’s quirky like the Giants’ long-time home, and its uniqueness will strike you – and, the Mets hope, their opponents, once Carlos Beltran and his corner outfielders get the hang of it.”A lot of people said, ‘Why don’t you make it symmetrical?’ ” Jeff Wilpon said. “But symmetrical is not going to make it work. We want a homefield advantage.”They should have that, and the old-time New Yorkers should possess some sense of comfort that the Mets know they are the National League descendants of both the Dodgers and the Giants.The ballpark, by the way, is scheduled to be completed on Jan. 25 of next year, giving the Mets a healthy 10 weeks or so of room for error.


What About The Children Who Didn’t Have School?

NEW YORK: The start of Wednesday’s game between the Pittsburgh Pirates and New York Mets was delayed 40 minutes after construction workers at the Mets’ new ballpark broke a water main.

The accident occurred less than an hour before the scheduled 1:10 p.m. start. It was quickly repaired, but Mets officials delayed the start to ensure that water service for restrooms and concession stands would be working.

Citi Field, where the Mets will begin play next season, is next to their current home, Shea Stadium.

Santana & Maine, pray for rain

Wow. 3:42pm. 9-0.
The Mets have two reliable staters.
Can’t wait to see the announced attendance. Lots of empty orange seats on SNY.
UPDATE 3:47. 12-0. Wow.

Omar Is Wrong!

“All of us are disappointed with what happened last season,” Minaya said. “But at some point, you have to move on. And if we’re going to move on, we really need the fans on our side.”

This so offends me. Don’t tell me how to feel!

Omar, we’re on your side. We want to win. We too wanted meaningful games in September, we just thought maybe The Mets could win 8 of 17.

You’ve yet again assembled a team of over the hill outsiders. You have one guy that’s 7-5 since June 2006. An over the hill LFer. You signed Julio Franco to a two year deal last year!

You’ve got a manager who is letting the SS become a knucklehead. Wouldn’t mind if someone like Jeter (yeah I said it) could come across town for a day to teach this kid how to play. Omar, you’re looking at the problem.

Win games, the booing stops. Very simple.

The Booing

Here’s an article in the Albany Times Union about booing. The Mets Police point out that The Mets are Bob Stanley away from having won once in 45 years. Even with some magic it’s twice.

We boo because you saddle us with Vince Coleman and Bobby Bonilla and hideous black jerseys and 15 years of Fran Healy calling games. Win some playoff games and everyone will shut up.

By BRIAN ETTKIN, Staff writer Click byline for more stories by writer. First published: Wednesday, April 30, 2008
You suspected toxic gases had infected the atmosphere when fans booed Johan Santana after he yielded three homers in his first home start as a Met, despite introducing himself by pitching superbly in his two preceding starts.

Then it got worse.

Something has spread like disease at Shea Stadium, but instead of inducing fits of coughing, it causes piques of booing.
So they boo Willie Randolph when he wakes in the morning, and they boo Carlos Delgado because he fails most every night; and on the rare occasions Delgado’s performance merits applause, such as Sunday’s two-homer game, he understandably declines the curtain call.

They boo Aaron Heilman as if he were pro wrestling’s biggest heel.

For the moment, Shea’s grounds crew is spared.

All of this is fine, of course. Other than ceasing to attend games en masse, booing is one of the few ways for fans to voice their displeasure and be heard. But this booing is different. It’s as if fans come to games waiting for the slightest provocation to discharge pent-up venom and stingers.
It’s as if The Collapse happened yesterday, though the 2008 season is now 25 games old. Mets fans are still angry, still lugging a chip as large as the Unisphere on their shoulder. They don’t like their team’s middling start and have made this abundantly clear.

But there’s another force at play: a loss of perspective, even by New York standards.

The Collapse is a leading candidate for worst baseball free fall ever. But some Mets fans consider it a star-crossed example of how unlucky a lot they are. Well, guess what? Many fans wish to “suffer” as the Mets’ have.

For all their alleged misfortune, Mets fans have experienced two World Series championships and four pennants since their 1962 inaugural season. The Mets have had 22 winning seasons in the past 39 years. They’ve advanced to the World Series four of the seven times they’ve made the postseason and came within a base hit in 2006 of making another.

They’re not the most successful big-league franchise, not even close; you need only look across town to see who that is. But Mets fans haven’t suffered nearly as much as their aggrieved self-image and behavior suggests.

The Chicago Cubs haven’t won a World Series in 100 years, and yet the mood at Wrigley Field is — get this — almost always joyous. Between 1946 and 1983 the Cubs never made the playoffs, and yet Mets fans are embittered?

Pittsburgh Pirates fans have reason to boo from the national anthem’s last note until the final out. Their team’s streak of 15 consecutive losing seasons is the longest current one in major U.S. pro sports. Through blind luck you’d think the Pirates would win more than they lose one year. But they don’t. And unlike the Mets, they’re a small-market team with a small payroll that hinders them.

The Kansas City Royals are nearly as bad as the Pirates, with one winning season in the past 14.
Then there’s the Milwaukee Brewers, who’ve made the playoffs only twice in the franchise’s 39 years.

Those are just some of the starkest examples of true torment.

Mets fans can boo if they wish; and if they wish to cast themselves as baseball’s hard-bitten suffering class, none of us will boo them for it.

A few of us might chuckle, though.