Rock beats scissors. Scissors beats paper. Paper beats rock. It’s one of the first things we learn during recess in school. This year, the New York Mets are learning what beats miracles. It’s math.
Not yet mathematically eliminated, the Mets have remained hopeful—at least on the surface. It’s hard to believe they actually do think they have a realistic shot at the postseason because their fate goes beyond just what they can control.
The Mets can win every game for the rest of the season. If so, this would indeed be a miracle.
But the math works against them. Their miracle needs to include a colossal fall from at least two other teams.
The Mets have more fight postgame than between innings one through nine
The tipping point for me this year came after Friday’s loss to the Philadelphia Phillies. Already discussed on Saturday morning on Rising Apple, the positivity has turned into delusion.
There is no prize for losing by one run; something the Mets have done plenty of over the last few weeks. However, mixed in with all of those close calls are games like last week’s 7-0 beating from the St. Louis Cardinals and the 11-4 loss the Mets took two days later.
Losing by one run 162 times in a season gets a team nowhere. It’s a team’s ability to fight a little harder and pull through those tight games that separate the good from the mediocre and bad.
In these final days of the 2021 season, we’ll surely see and hear a shift from the players and management. Soon, those hopes of a miraculous comeback, as unlikely as it is, will have to go underground. The math will win. In September, it always does.
What we want to see from the Mets in these final games
Just because the team isn’t playing for anything more than bragging rights and maybe a few fat personal statistics doesn’t mean we’ll stop watching. Nope. We’ve been with the team all year long and many years prior. This isn’t the worst Mets team of all time. Each of us has lived with and stuck through much more painful endings.
In these final two weeks of the 2021 season, it does matter for the returning players to find their best game. Even if they pump their chests out a little more than they should each time they hit a home run in a meaningless game, it is a positive.
Something I don’t believe in is how good momentum can carry over from one season to the next. It never does. Too much time separates game 162 and the following Opening Day.
On the contrary, a miserable finish can affect a team poorly. The Mets roster could have a lot of big changes this winter. Many players will still come back, though. We want the vibe to be anything but bad from the start. Particularly in the last three seasons, chemistry has been a big part of why the team succeeds or fails.
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Effort and a sign of better things to come are all Mets fans want before the season is through. It’s not a big ask. It’s the bare minimum.