I am about to hit the bricks for the evening, but I have one thing to say to Red Sox fans and to a lesser extent Braves fans. Actually, I could give a shit about Braves fans. I guess I feel for Red Sox fans more, you know, the enemy of my enemy, etc.
Remember at the beginning of the season, the Mets got off to a very slow start with 5-13 record. Remember all that hullabaloo? Around the same time, Fred Wilpon conducted an interview with the New Yorker and made a comment about how shitty the team was?
Around the same time, a team with much higher expectations, the Red Sox (who orchestrated a trade for Adrian Gonzalez and signed the most coveted Carl Crawford in the offseason) started with a 2-10 record.
Many of the common refrains we hear at those times include: Oh, it’s only April. Oh, there’s plenty of baseball to be played. Oh, we’ll get our act together. Et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. I’m beginning to think it’s a rationalization of worse times to come.
The reality is, I think the Red Sox clearly understand the importance of winning games early on in the season.
I speak from experience. Actually, my friend Steve Keane at Kranepool Society made a comment on Twitter about how it “will get better” for Red Sox fans. Well, I think Mets fans can attest…it has NOT gotten any better, in fact, things have gotten progressively WORSE since the Mets ended the 2007 season 5-12 in the last 17 games (when they had a fucking SEVEN GAME LEAD at the time over the hated Phillies, who went 13-4 in that same stretch. Assholes). Anyway, I remember telling people, who thought I was crazy, that when the Mets weren’t winning critical games midseason, that they weren’t leaving a margin of error for the playoff run. I guess at the time, they figured the playoffs were within reach and I was nuts for even venturing to think the Mets would collapse. Well, they did and now we are on the verge of finishing our third consecutive fourth place finish. Behind the Nationals. THE NATIONALS!
The Red Sox probably wish they won some of the games they SHOULD have won now. I spent a weekend in Boston early on in the season where they lost a game to the Seattle Mariners, and it was very close. This was an example of a game they should have dominated. They did not. See my point?
People are making such a big deal about their epic collapse, specifically now that the Rays are playing the Yankees, and it seems like the Yankees are deliberately blowing the games so the Red Sox have to play much harder. My philosophy is, it shouldn’t have even come to this.
In 2007, people point to the last game of the season that Tom Glavine started for the Mets, but the reality is there were plenty of games they SHOULD HAVE won but DID NOT before that. Including that week. The same goes for the Sox now.
I will always have these seasons in mind provided the Red Sox completely implode, or even if they don’t, it’s something to argue. Wins count no matter when they occur. Just something to bear in mind when your team with high expectations comes to a slow start.
Oh and for the record. I don’t want to hear anything about 2007 ever again. EVER. If the Braves and the Red Sox don’t make the playoffs, nobody ever say BOO about it. Kthxbye.