Mets Crumbling; Darker Forces At Work

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Final Score: Brewers 5, Mets 3

Quick Recap: I don’t even have the energy to dissect this .500 road trip the Mets just finished. They just split a series in Milwaukee in truly embarrassing fashion. You want a recap of this game? The Mets committed 3 documented errors and an additional mistake that should have been an error. In the first inning with 2 outs, Ryan Braun hit a ball to Wilmer Flores that he deflected into the outfield. Alejandro De Aza then misfired to second base and Braun advanced to third on his error. The Brewers didn’t end up scoring that inning, but Flores should have been given an error on the play too. The Brewers scored three runs in the second inning. Keon Broxton hit an RBI single to make it 1-0. Then with runners on second and third, pitcher Zach Davies hit a sac bunt and Matz threw it away. Two more runs scored to make it 3-0. In the fifth inning, pitcher Zach Davies singled and then Jonathan Villar bunted to third. Wilmer Flores fielded the bunt, threw the ball away, and Davies advanced to third due to the error. That error set up a sac fly by Braun and an RBI double by Jonathan Lucroy to make it 5-0.

As far as the Mets offense goes, there was none other than Curtis Granderson and Yoenis Cespedes adding some meaningless RBI hits in the 8th inning. The Mets left the world on base per usual. Cespedes went 2 for 4. He’s our only real threat right now.

Darker Forces At Work: The Mets injury plague has jumped to frightening levels. Before the game, Terry Collins went to the hospital for tests. Pray for Terry. Now we have Travis d’Arnaud out, Lucas Duda/David Wright out for basically the season, Neil Walker battling back issues, Michael Conforto battling a wrist injury, and Cespedes sore in every part of his body. Essentially, the entire starting lineup is injured.

These 2016 injury woes go way beyond the standard Ray Ramirez inept training staff issues that we’ve all come to expect. We went to the World Series last year, and everyone is now disintegrating before our eyes. My running theory is this:

In mid-July of 2015, the Wilpons, the Ricketts Family that owns the Cubs, the Madoff trustee Irving Picard, and Lucifer himself all met with Bernie Madoff at his current prison facility in North Carolina.

The Deal:

  • The Wilpons got Yoenis Cespedes and a promise from Satan that he would help them make tons of money from future ticket sales so they could keep their fortune and pay back the money they owe for Madoff.
  • The Cubs got Satan to lift their curse and a promise of a World Series championship in 2016.
  • The Madoff trustee was promised he would get enough money from the Wilpons to pay back all the Madoff victims.
  • Bernie Madoff got his soul freed from Satan’s grasp, and a promise that he’d spend his afterlife in a nice mildly entertaining section of purgatory.
  • Satan got the souls of Daniel Murphy and Michael Fulmer, and in return the two athletes would go on to be the best hitter and pitcher in Major League Baseball for years to come.

Now in true Bedazzled fashion, there’s always some cruel spin on these deals with the devil. So here’s what we’ve seen happen since the deal went down. In August and September, Satan possessed Yoenis Cespedes who single-handedly sparked the Mets offense and led them to the playoffs. Satan simultaneously cursed Matt Williams and the Nationals. In the playoffs, in a cruel twist Satan transferred his influence from Cespedes to Daniel Murphy and used him to put a dagger through the Chicago Cubs heart thus keeping their curse in place in 2015. In the World Series, Satan temporarily left Murph and consequently he returned to being a defensive bum thus costing the Mets the championship. The Mets losing the World Series did not matter however because the playoff run combined with the continued presence of Cespedes has given the Wilpons all they needed to generate ticket sales to pay back the Madoff trustee.

Now in 2016, we have seen the second half of the deal. Daniel Murphy is the best hitter in baseball and carrying the Nationals who Satan wronged in 2015. Michael Fulmer is emerging as an absolute rookie of the year pitching stud for the Tigers. The Cubs so far are the best team to ever step foot on a baseball field, and seemingly nothing can stop them from ending their championship drought. And of course, the Wilpons were never actually promised a championship or any extended run of success as part of the evil negotiations. But they continue to sell tickets despite their entire team crumbling due to injury.

So that’s my running theory. I think the Wilpons made a deal with the devil, and now everything is falling apart because those mooks couldn’t negotiate a good business deal to save their lives. It’s June, the Mets are 34-28, and still technically hold an NL Wildcard spot despite their recent struggles. The season is so long and things can absolutely turn around in the summer for the Mets like they did last year. But yeah if you couldn’t tell from my tone above, I’m feeling kind of pessimistic about the direction our season is going.

2016 Mets: Pre-Season Scapegoat Predictions 

Before the Democrats had Wall Street and Trump had Mexican immigrants, Mets fans had the Wilpons to blame for all the team’s ills. Whenever the Mets were at or near the basement of the NL East over the last 7 years, the fans would ready their fingers for pointing at Jeff and Fred. “They are slashing payroll! They are in debt! They meddled in baseball decisions! We can’t win unless they sell the team!”

As you might expect, the Wilpons heard the criticism and simply joined in on the scapegoating. In fact, you could say they were the trailblazers for all the modern political finger pointing trends by blaming Bernie Madoff and Latin American immigrant General Manager Omar Minaya. It would be nice if Mets fans, the Wilpons, politicians, and society as a whole could all just unite in their scapegoating and find one illegal immigrant Mexican insider trading hedge fund manager to blame for all of the world’s problems, but I fear that day may never come.

Anyway, whenever the losing set in over the last 7 years (usually right before the All-Star break), Mets fans were ready with the stock Wilpon excuses. However, 2016 will be the first season in a long time where the Wilpons won’t be the default scapegoat. In fact, because the Wilpons signed Yoenis Cespedes and let Maverick Sandy make every move he wanted, fans can’t possibly blame them. At least not this year.

That being said, in a season that begins with the highest of expectations, finger pointing is inevitable the second the slightest thing goes wrong. So without further ado, here is the list of Top 5 likeliest goats if things fall apart in 2016:



5) The New Guy –
Whenever things go wrong, the easiest thing to do is to blame the new guy. And when the new guy is replacing a particularly popular player in Daniel Murphy, it makes him an even likelier target. Neil Walker has been one of the most consistently productive offensive 2B in all of baseball over the last 5 seasons. He’s a switch hitter, a better defender than Murphy, and he’s in a contract year. There’s almost no reason to believe he will do anything but thrive in the middle of the Mets lineup and earn himself a nice big payday after the season. That being said, after watching Jason Bay come over to New York as one of the most productive outfielders in the league and inexplicably deteriorate right before our eyes, there’s no guarantee that someone will thrive in the Big Apple just because they excelled in Pittsburgh. Plus look at the guy. I know he’s got a reputation as a hard-nosed player, but he appears to be butter soft. He looks like the kind of guy that reads the Bible in the hotel room on road trips. And not in that Daniel Murphy psycho fundamentalist Christian way but in that “I read it for the wisdom within” kind of way. I’m confident he is going to have a huge season for us. However, he’ll be one of the first fan targets if he has a rough start to the season and the team struggles.



4) Old Man Collins
– The manager is always a top scapegoat target especially when the team has high expectations for the season. Terry “Cotton Hill” Collins has faced a ton of adversity during his tenure managing this team. From the time he was hired in 2011 until August of last season, the team was completely awful. But the team was bad by design during those years. For the first time ever, Terry has the real NYC spotlight on him, and every managerial decision he makes is going to get scrutinized at an extreme level. Just look at Harveygate in Game 5 of the World Series. Even though he’s made a ton of questionable in game decisions during his time as manager, Game 5 may have been the first time he was broadly criticized by all the MLB talking heads. Why? Because it was a big game and people were actually paying attention. Now Terry is going to face that level of scrutiny for 162 games. We’ve seen Terry handle losing when it was expected, but it’ll be interesting to see how he handles a losing streak when Vegas expects us to win.



3) David Wright‘s Titanium Spine
– Last season, David Wright‘s spinal stenosis and all the injuries on the team in general had a major impact on the Mets pre-trade deadline performance. However, the injured players didn’t get blamed as much as the Wilpons did for not allowing Sandy Alderson to build a deep roster. Well now we have a deep roster, and David Wright has started his inevitable transformation into an injury-prone cyborg. With his spine deteriorating by the day and his desperate need for a futuristic titanium replacement growing, he’s in danger of becoming more machine than man. If he once again misses lengthy periods of the season and the team struggles, the fans may finally start complaining a little more about his frailty and gigantic contract. Or maybe all his robot parts will translate into a late career surge in performance and like astronaut Steve Austin he will transform into the inflation adjusted 138 million dollar man that we always hoped he would be.



2) Matt Harvey and his Sexcapades
Matt Harvey is the face of the Mets franchise. He demanded to be the face when he arrived, and he got his wish. He is always on the brink of being blamed for everything under the sun. He tweeted out that picture after his Tommy John surgery where he was flipping everyone off and he was widely criticized. At the end of last season, everyone was ready to crucify him because of the media fabricated story that he wanted to stop pitching once he reached his “innings limit”. Before the playoffs started he missed some BS workout and everyone was freaking out. The point is everything he does is going to be scrutinized. And all those criticisms I mentioned have happened while he’s been at the top of his game. If he experiences just the slightest amount of playoff hangover fatigue and his performance dips, it won’t be long before the media is blaming his appearances on Late Night with Seth Meyers for the team’s “lack of focus”. As long as the team is winning and he is performing at the top of his game, he can turn his limo into a clown car full of models and take them all to see the Rangers at Madison Square Garden. If Harvey and the Mets struggle, he’ll be run out of town faster than you can say “Dark Knight”.



1) Yoenis Cespedes and his Smoking/Bat Flipping/Laziness
– The acquisition of Cespedes, his torrid summer, and the Mets playoff run, happened so fast that fans barely had time to complain about anything let alone about Cespedes. But that didn’t stop a contingent of asshole Mets fans from forming after the World Series who thought the Mets should let Cespedes walk because he misplayed Alcides Escobar‘s lead-off inside the park home run in Kansas City. That’s right. There were fans who turned against the man who carried the team to the playoffs because he had a bad World Series (along with everyone else on the team). Imagine how quickly they will turn on him if he has a down month and the offense can’t get anything going during his slump. I can hear the complaining already. “His bat flipping is cocky” and “He takes lazy routes to the ball” and “He doesn’t run hard to first base” and on and on. Let’s not forget that Cespedes already has a made up reputation for being a clubhouse distraction, so it’s only a matter of time before the media decides to dust off the old lies and re-print them. In fact, he’ll wind up getting scapegoated for a lot of the same reasons Trump scapegoats Mexican immigrants. Basically a bunch of made up racist reasons. Anyway, let’s hope that we win 100 games and his bat flipping becomes an iconic memory of the season rather than a symbol of his “immaturity” like the Mejia save stomp (R.I.P. Jenrry).

After a run to the World Series and a successful offseason, it’s hard to feel anything but positive about our chances coming into the season. That being said, these are the Mets we are talking about. And I know come Opening Day when the Mets are losing to the Royals in Kansas City and my beer is half-empty, I am going to be looking to point my finger at someone. Better to just prepare for the inevitable now.