I stick with things a long time – ratty t-shirts, tattered sneakers, faded easy chairs.
For the same reason, I am glad the Mets did not break up this juggernaut at the trading deadline.
Is this a personality defect, this disinterest in change? Probably. Go tell it to my clamshell cell phone. But some things work just well enough; you get used to them.
I just got an e-mail from a senior-citizen hardball player in the city who says he has stopped being a Yankee fan because of the way they dumped Brian Roberts, essentially an Oriole, to make room for new infielders.
Reminder: guys got dropped to make room for Johnny Mize and Johnny Sain and Enos Slaughter and Pedro Ramos over the years. Pistol Pete helped salvage the 1964 pennant, although he arrived too late to be eligible for the World Series.
As somebody who follows most Mets games, I’m glad they did not scuttle Bartolo Colon. I got used to his constant half smile (is he happy? is it gas?) and his Iron Mike steadiness. I know he’s a one-year wonder at 42, but move him in the off season.
I’m glad they didn’t trade Daniel Murphy because he hustles, old-school, even though he makes fans nervous every time he bends for a simple grounder.
Generally, I hate the trading deadline in the era of free agency. I hated it when the Mets sold David Cone in one of those weasel waiver deals in late August of 1992. I hated it last season when the Mets unloaded Marlon Byrd. By mid-summer, you get used to a player who is doing his job.
These mid-summer dumps happen when players’ contracts are running out, or getting too expensive. It’s the drawback to free agency, which the players earned, although the so-called reserve clause, servitude, contributed to that wonderful decade of my childhood – six pennants in 10 years for the Boys of Summer. That will never happen now. Duke Snider would have opted out. Or Big Newk. Or somebody.
If players have the right to move around, clubs have the right to move them first, for some quick-fix advantage. I get it. Fans have a lust for trades; if they didn’t, there would be no sports-talk radio.
But this Mets’ season is just comfortable enough, given our limited expectations in the hundred-year contamination period from Bernie Madoff. Sandy Alderson is building something – I don’t know what. They made a good move in keeping Duda. Who knew? They sent d’Arnaud to the attitude farm in Las Vegas, and brought him back fast. Who doesn’t love watching Famiglia and Mejia in the eighth and ninth? It’s been fun watching deGrom pitch – and swing – from his first game.
So play it out in Queens, while the Lesters and Lackeys and Prices go flying around, office temps.
Maybe Mets fans would feel differently if the Mets were a legitimate contender. Who has that kind of time?
Welcome to World Cup 2022, the most absurd thing that the routinely absurd world of sports has ever produced.
Those extreme descriptions were what virtually the entire world, save for those who had walked off with bags of cash from Qatar, called the awarding of soccer’s greatest event to the incredibly tiny, incredibly wealthy country back in 2010.
Twelve years ago, many were convinced this event couldn’t possibly happen: staging the world’s biggest sporting event in a country the size of Connecticut, one with zero soccer culture and even less soccer infrastructure? The tournament couldn’t possibly take place in 120-degree heat, and FIFA, the governing body of soccer, most certainly wouldn’t upend football leagues around the world to change the traditional summer schedule, could it?
And, for God’s sake, what about the beer?
Those were just the logistical concerns. The moral concerns are far more distressing. FIFA, so busy paying lip service to equality, couldn’t possibly expect the world to embrace a country where you could go to prison for being gay, where women’s rights are severely curtailed and female victims of sexual assault could go to prison, charged with engaging in extramarital sex. And all those questions came before the global realization that the World Cup was being built on the backs of migrant labor: modern-day slaves held in Qatar with virtually no rights, low wages and no ability to leave. Migrants make up 90% of Qatar’s stated population of 3 million. The country’s native-born equal about 300,000, or roughly the size of Anaheim.
---Ann Killion, columnist for The San Francisco Chronicle.