The Beginning of the End
It's been a quite a season for the Mets and their fans. The Mets are in first place in the National League East. The last time the Mets fans heard that sentence in September, it was 2007 and things looked bright.
With a seven-game lead and 17 to play in 2007, the Mets went on to lose the NL East to the Phillies with their loss to the Marlins in their final game completed the collapse for them. For Mets fans, this seemed like rock bottom, as the Mets had one of the worst collapses in baseball history. Enter the final game of the 2008 season, their final game at Shea Stadium.
When the Mets came to bat in the ninth inning, the Brewers had already won and to keep the lights on at Shea Stadium, the Mets needed to win. But in the fashion of the season before, the Mets were handed a loss by the Marlins. That was it. Game over, season over, Shea Stadium closed.
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If Mets fans knew what that loss would lead to, they'd probably wish for a 2008- esque season all over again. Since Citi Field opened in the 2009 season, it hasn't seen postseason baseball. It hasn't seen Mets in first place in September baseball either.
This season, of course, has been special, the Mets have risen from the cellar of the NL East and Citi Field has now seen Mets in first place in September baseball, but the question for Mets fans is will it see postseason baseball?
A Fan's Opinion
As a Mets fan, if the past nine seasons have taught me anything it's: Nothing is ever guaranteed. The Mets have shown me multiple times that with any sort of lead, nothing is ever guaranteed. Of course when I think of this my mind shoots to Luis Castillo and that heartbreaking ball drop in the Subway Series.
For many Mets fans, including myself it's been hard to buy into this recent success. For much of the season, I've found myself thinking it's just temporary. But when does that temporary become permanent? In August when they got to first? At the end of August when they were still in first? When their magic number became single digits? When they have less than 20 games less to play and are still in first?
No matter where the Mets have taken themselves this year, that horrible "C" word keeps creeping into our heads, with every loss we think that this is the end, the normal Mets are back. The problem is, at this point in the season, these are the normal Mets.
Mets fans are forgetting the age old mantra that have kept Mets fans Met fans for so long, "Ya gotta believe." We've endured ten straight seasons of losing and when they start winning, we can't seem to accept it. Our captain David Wright has repeatedly called us the best fans in baseball, let's show this team we really are.
For any Mets fan reading this I only have two things to say, "This is real and it's really happening, the Mets are winning," and "LET'S GO METS!"
For any fans that still lay in doubt, there should be some solace in the fact that the Mets sit 20 games over .500 and own a six and a half game lead over the Nationals. They've got their magic number down to seven and have games coming up against the Phillies, Braves, and Reds.
The Red and Phillies are two teams the Mets have had tremendous success against this season and in the second half they've had, things shouldn't change down the stretch.
In the next 13 days, the Mets have 12 games. Starting with September 22, they finish up their series with the Braves and then continue on to Cincinnati for a four-game set with the Reds and after a day off on September 28, they head to Philadelphia for a three-game series with the Phillies.
This gives the Mets nine games to bring their magic number of seven to zero and clinch the National League East. If it comes down to it and the Mets haven't clinched by October 2, they will have a very crucial three games against the Nationals to close up the 2015 regular season.