Print this story

Thanks for the memories, Mets! Let's get it in 2020.

POSTED October 01, 2019
BY Timothy W. Gaffney
Twitter: @TimothyGaffney

TORRINGTON: I hate to admit it, but I was a bit sad when the last New York Mets game came to an end this Sunday.

I also hate to admit that I had turned off the game right after the second home run of the game by former Met Adeiny Hechavarria landed somewhere near the Whitestone Bridge in the top of the eleventh inning, putting the Braves up 5-4 at the time. They would increase their lead to 6-4 moments later (I went outside to do some yard work) when Adam Duvall did the same thing.

Much to my surprise, when I came back in fifteen minutes later, I saw that this team, one that seemed to have this magic inside them most of the year, had done it again in storybook fashion.

Dominic Smith, a guy who came in during the top of the eleventh for the last feel good moment for Pete Alonso, you know, the guy that took New York by storm this year, had hit a walk-off, three-run homer to send the faithful home with another last minute win, 7-6.

Of course, he did and of course they did.

There have been so many of those moments during a second half that saw them play .638 ball (46-26) as they made a run towards the post-season, done in ultimately by their horrific back end of the bullpen.

They were though, entertaining, starting with Alonso, who I was surprised the team brought with them after breaking camp in March because bringing him up (it seemed like it was his time) was so un-Mets like.

Service time equals money and when it comes to money and the Mets, well I won’t grab the low hanging fruit but you get the drift.

You all know about the kids records by now but what I like the most about the kid is his genuine emotion for the game, the moment and his actions on and off the field.

His making shoes for his teammates to commemorate the events of September 11, 2001 was a sign that this young man had the makings of something great.

First year players don’t usually rock the boat as they look to find their place on a team and in a city but Alonso didn’t shy away from what he wanted to do and good for him.

Major League Baseball’s explanation for why they don’t allow caps of the different units involved in those tragic events is ridiculous.

Paying respects to the men and women who did what they did that days and over the following months is a gimmie.

Alonso is 24-years old, meaning he was just six at the time of the attacks but his parents, who are so much fun to watch in the stands, seemed to make sure he understood.

I had not watched any games this year because we had dropped cable in favor of Fire Stick TV’s a couple of years ago (did not want to pay in excess of $220 per month) but had lost SNY, the home of the Mets.

A buddy had told me about Hulu Live, an upgrade from the Hulu account I already had that brought sports back into the fold so I started to tune in on occasion.

Sure, it was hard to watch them at times, especially when it was later in the game but I had a feeling about this group that I didn’t think I would have it you had asked me six months ago.

I had next to no expectations for them as the season got underway, we always hear how great they look in Spring Training but what happens when they come North?

Sometimes not so good.

Rick Wilson and I took in a game in August and were on hand when Alonso broke the teams single-season home run mark in an eventual loss (one of six in a row that sealed their post-season fate) and got to see out friend and THS grad, Jerry Beach, always a great time.

On that trip, I set a new record for getting to a game early.

We left Thomaston at about 2:30 and pulled into Citi Field at 4:20. Trouble was, the joint doesn’t open until 5:30 so we had some time to kill.

Thank goodness for McFadden’s, a restaurant on site that we were able to stop and grab a bite to eat.

Citi Field is tremendous and it has been fun hearing the place alive after opening day.

Will 2020 bring better results and a spot in the Post-Season?

Don’t know but I’m thankful that I felt some of the buzz in a memorable 2019.


For more from Timothy W. Gaffney click here