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NY Mets Fans: Thank you for riding with us again in 2021

NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 29: Javier Baez #23 of the New York Mets celebrates with Francisco Lindor #12 in the dugout after hitting a two run home run during the bottom of the fourth inning of a game against the Washington Nationals at Citi Field on August 29, 2021 in New York City. (Photo by Dustin Satloff/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 29: Javier Baez #23 of the New York Mets celebrates with Francisco Lindor #12 in the dugout after hitting a two run home run during the bottom of the fourth inning of a game against the Washington Nationals at Citi Field on August 29, 2021 in New York City. (Photo by Dustin Satloff/Getty Images)
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Cut! And I don’t mean the kind of cut through your soul after another year of watching your team fail to make the postseason. I mean “cut” in terms of putting an end to this movie called the 2021 New York Mets season.

The last 11 months have been some of the most optimistic in recent team history. The end of the Wilpon Era ushered in absolute hope for better days ahead. Although the finish wasn’t what anybody wanted, it was a banner year writing for Rising Apple.

I’ll try not to get too juicy and sentimental. But on this early autumn day, with the season now in the past, I felt the need to tip my cap to everyone who made this an awesome year.

Thank you Mets fans for going on the ride with us again in 2021

I think the 2021 season was the one where I was locked in most since joining Rising Apple back in early 2018. Although it might be partly because the team was relevant for longer, the season felt a little more special because of how many games we missed out on in 2020. I didn’t realize until this year started how much I missed the never-ending 162 game schedule I’ve had all my life. Last year was tough on everyone. Writing about baseball was secondary to so much else, but having things feel a little more normal between the foul poles helped a lot.

Rising Apple did a lot of special things in 2021. We’ve continued to add a diverse and opinionated team. In my role with the website, a goal of mine has been to provide opportunities to anyone looking to be heard. When I first started writing about baseball way back in 2013, I didn’t know a thing about it. Being able to provide advice, guidance, and share my thoughts on the sport I grew up loving has been a reward.

None of it would be possible without our readers.

It’s like cooking. I enjoy doing it. Without someone to feed, why bother?

To our readers, the dailies and the occasional ones who pop in, THANK YOU!

Thank you Rising Apple team for your hard work and excellence

On November 1, 2020, I woke up not feeling like myself. A few days later, I got tested and found out the pandemic finally caught me. A few days after that, at the advice of a doctor, I ended up in the hospital when my blood oxygen level reading was low. It was the first time I was admitted into a hospital for an emergency as an adult; and I’ve been an adult longer than my thinning hair would like to admit. I didn’t last long. My vitals were fine and the fear of a massive hospital bill weighed heavier on me than death.

Again, I’ve been an adult for quite some time now. Between death and bills, I’ve made my decision which I prefer.

The whole month of November was tough on me. I felt like the second week with COVID was worse than the first. Even when I finally tested negative, the brain fog loomed and it took me several weeks to finally feel somewhat normal again.

Meanwhile, the Rising Apple team continued to chew their bubble game and take names. They took on the early November Mets coverage I was unable to handle whatsoever. For the first time in years, I felt no interest in baseball, writing, or anything else other than binge-watching Netflix. We were able to maintain our streak of having something published every day even through this time. Even better, the Rising Apple team continued to put together some of the most original content out there on a consistent basis.

My mantra: if someone else could write it word-for-word, it’s probably not worth your time.

As a team, I think we all have different goals when writing about the Mets. Some of us are young and hoping to parlay this into a future full-time job. Others are more sporadic and enjoy writing because it’s something we’re called to. Whatever those reasons are, I hope there’s always some enjoyment in the end.

It’s about the fans

It occurred to me sometime in 2019 that Rising Apple is a part of the FanSided Network. I knew this already but it clicked: it’s about the fans.

Fandom of the game of baseball, Mets or any other team, is what links you and me together. We don’t have much else in common—unless you also have an unfounded fear of asking others for help. Then we have that, too. In which case, I’ll see you at the meeting next week in the church basement. Save me a donut.

Being a sports fan isn’t easy. In the case of the Mets, another down year in 2021 confirms this.

As a representative of Rising Apple, I think it’s always important to remind myself of this fact just as the players should. The fans are what make the game work. If everyone stopped paying attention, baseball dies. Rising Apple works because of the collection of players, writers, and fans. It all jives together and creates something special.

So to sum it all up, thank you to everyone who had any involvement whatsoever this season with Rising Apple. If you read a single article, thank you! If you wrote something, thank you! If you stepped on the mound for the Mets, thank you!

Predicting which free agents the Mets bring back. Next

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One of these days I’ll be able to write something for Rising Apple about the Mets in the postseason. Until then, let’s enjoy the ride wherever it may take us.

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