Well, I was wrong, and I love it! I shared the sentiment of most Mets fans that Tom Glavine's potential season-ending blood clot was that other shoe finally falling.
Instead, Glavine can be on the mound in a matter of ten days. Take your helmets off, Mets fans. I don't think you'll have to worry about getting hit in the head with that loafer.
If Glavine's season was over, the Mets were not going to the World Series. He's been an anchor on a staff that's battled injuries, including Pedro, who has missed time for a hip injury/stomach flu and is currently out with a calf injury. He's been the most consistent pitcher on the staff. El Duque is either lights out or just out after the first inning. John Maine had a nice scoreless streak going -- 22 innings, but he let up seven runs tonight against the Cardinals. There have been many new faces on the staff since the beginning of the season: Brian Bannister, Alay Soler, Dave Williams, Mike Pelfrey, and Jose Lima to name a few. Yet, Glavine's face was always there. Steve Trachel has had a strong second half, but Glavine's had a strong year.
The Mets have had some bad years before this one and Mets nation is used to things going bad. This year, the Mets seemed to be breaking that pattern, but then things kind of turned around. Stud Reliever Duaner Sanchez sustained a season-ending shoulder injury while taking a cab. Pedro can't seem to stay healthy long enough. They got beat around for the first three games in Philadelphia last week. Then, the news that Glavine may have been out for the year. The old Mets mojo looked to be biting them in the ass again.
Then things changed today. With the news of Glavine's return, it started looking like this year really was different. To add to the Mets day, they finally dealt for Shawn Green, sending some cash and a AAA pitcher to the Diamondbacks. With their outfield a little questionable, this will be a good move to help strengthen their field and lineup.
Last night, they played one of the few fellow NL threats, the St. Louis Cardinals, at Shea. Since I was at work late, I decided to throw the game on TV there and watch it as I closed up -- hopefully my boss doesn't read The Out Route or I'll be doing this full time. After two Pujols bombs, including a grand slam, they're suddenly down 7-1. If they lose that game, I know the Mets will be questioned by New York media for only being able to beat up on crappy teams. But first baseman Carlos Delgado answered with a grand slam of his own to bring it to 7-5. A grounder scored another late run in the game to make it 7-6.
The bullpen held the Cards to 7, helping with two Chad Bradford double plays and a beautiful 1-2-3 inning from Aaron Heilman. However, come the 9th inning, they were still down 7-6, and visitor Bill Clinton looked to be falling asleep in the stands. With one out, Paul Lo Duce bloops a single into center and Carlos Beltran steps to the plate. As soon as he stepped up, I knew, and I assumed that Mets fans everywhere knew, that this game was going to end with a walk-off home run right there. The first pitch was knocked out of the park.
(Bill Clinton, who was onhand, had no doubt the Mets would win it)
Today was a turning points for the Mets. Not only is the news of Glavine great for the Mets staff. It's great for the Mets fans. Even with the Mets kicking ass all year, I never really felt comfortable. In the beginning of the year, I decided my personal slogan for the team would be "The Mets: I'll Believe it When I See It." After a couple months of Met domination, my standard away message was in reference to the team's surprising play -- I suggested bringing back Tug McGraw's "You Gotta Believe." That day, a fellow Mets fan told me he wouldn't believe at least until after the All Star break.
Well, I think it's finally time to believe. The worst could have happened, and it didn't. This year isn't like recent Mets years of the past. It's different. The Mets are kicking ass. And we have no reason to stress about it.