We should have all learned our lesson by now: don’t get fooled by a hot start from the New York Mets.
There’s a tradition in baseball New York Mets fans know well. Every Opening Day, the team wins. It’s just a fact.
Well, sort of. The Mets aren’t invincible on Opening Day. However, it’s pretty much their one day to relish in victory ahead of time.
A win on Opening Day is akin to getting off to a lead in the first five steps of a marathon. It’s great to get ahead of everyone else. It also holds little weight when you cross the first mile.
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Over the last two seasons, the Mets did what they usually do on Opening Day: win. In 2018, they managed to carry the momentum much further. The 11-1 start gave fans plenty of hope the team was ready to bounce back from a miserable 2017 campaign.
It wasn’t that easy. Nothing ever can be, can it?
By the end of May, they fell to .500. They failed to climb above it or even stay right there. June rolled around and like they have for the past two, the team slipped up in a major way.
The amazing start was wiped out completely in June. All of the hype we felt around the team at 11-1 was now gone.
This doesn’t mean we should hope for a more average start from the 2020 Mets. I think that hot start followed by the collapse taught the remaining players a lesson about keeping your foot on the pedal. The baseball season is a long one. There’s no time for accepting losses regardless of when they take place.
Something else we saw in the second half of the last two seasons was a late surge. The Mets waited until September to play their best remaining baseball in 2018. Last year, it took place right after the All-Star Break.
This team has a reputation—at least from the fans—as a streaky team. It’s hard to deny it. Far too often, the team builds momentum and either take it all the way to the World Series like they did in 2015 or runs out of gas a little too soon. I would reference a year as an example of this, but how do I choose only one?
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In 2020, we’ll take an example from The Who. We won’t be fooled again.