>Anyone else sick of the he said/she said nonsense of Carlos Beltran’s “kniesta bowl”? Had enough of the endless back and forth, or just the general embarrassment of being a Met fan? Tired of the constant bumbling of the organizational higher-ups? Fed up with the endless excuses and empty promises? Starting to wonder if Jeff Wilpon is actually the Philadelphia Phanatic? *Well, I certainly am.
*Think about it. Have you ever seen who’s underneath that fuzzy green costume? Have you ever seen Jeff Wilpon and the Phanatic photographed together? I didn’t think so.
Don’t get me wrong, I love the Mets – I’d never actually be able to walk out on them. They’re my team, my one and only love. But I’m starting to feel like I need an escape, a baseball outlet of some kind, especially after the way they’ve mistreated me the past seasons. I’d love to see a team with players that are able to throw and catch the ball, put together by a front office than issues painless press releases instead of holding pointless press conferences. Reasonable ticket prices. Let me park for free in the marina again. Jack Bauer voice: LET ME PARK FOR FREE IN THE MARINA.
I’m ashamed to admit this, but I’m thinking about having an affair with another baseball team, at least until the Mets stop embarrassing themselves in public. I need the spark in my baseball life again. I’ve come to a compulsive and poorly thought-out decision: I’m going to prostitute my baseball fanhood.
Where does one go if they want to prostitute themselves? Craigslist. So, last night, I put an ad on Craigslist soliciting myself to the highest bidding team. I’ll reprint the ad here in case they decide to take it down (or if you’re just too lazy to click through):
Hi there, baseball teams. Listen up – I have an offer for you.
Let me make this very clear: I’m a Met fan, and I always have been. My father is a Met fan and thus I was raised a Met fan. I went to my first baseball game at Shea Stadium, may she rest in peace, and I was there when they closed her down and there when they opened up Citi Field. I’ve been with the team, both in times both good and bad – I saw the Todd Pratt home run and Tom Glavine give up 7 runs in the first inning of game 162. I’ve made a lifelong fan-commitment to the Mets – a sacred bond – and I don’t want to just throw that away for nothing.
But I can’t take this anymore. The Mets, my dear Mets? They don’t take care of themselves like they used to – always getting hurt and showing up out of shape. I remember long ago when it was fun, with Piazza, Alfonzo, and Bobby V – even Benny Agbayani. But now? They turn everything into an argument. Beltran didn’t have the team’s permissions to have surgery, then he did, then he didn’t again. I don’t know what they’re thinking anymore, or who is even in charge. Is it a Wilpon? Which one? What is Omar’s role now, anyway? They can barely even look at me, and when I ask them about it, they blame it on the Dodgers medical staff. I try to talk to them about our problems, and I end up hearing from John Ricco instead. It’s like I’m just a piece of meat to them, like they just want me to buy their tickets and then there going to throw me away. They come home late at night, without calling, smelling like Shake Shack and covered in Dodgers memorabilia – how do you think that makes me feel? And the parking? Sometimes it cost more than the tickets. Again, I still love this team as the one I grew up with, and I always will, but enough is enough.
And don’t get me started on the empty promises. First, they promised in 2007 that “Our Season Had Come.” Well, that worked out great didn’t it – was that what you had in mind Mets? That was “our season?” Then they told me they fixed everything in 2008, that they were a changed team, that things were going to be different this time. And who was left standing in the stands alone on game 162 again? I was. And finally, in 2009, they said they had fixed everything again. K-Rod and Putz would fix the bullpen and that was all we would need. And, like the romantic sap I am, I believed them. And they broke my heart. They broke my heart.
So I’m here on craigslist looking for another team to have a fan-affair with – not a permanent thing, just until the Mets clean themselves up and stop embarrassing themselves. Major League, Minor League, Independent League, Little League – I’m not picky. There’s simply no romance with the Mets anymore – I remember when I would come home and there would be a Carlos Beltran or a Johan Santana waiting for me. Now? I get a Bengie Molina. What the hell am I even supposed to do with that? A 35-year-old catcher with a .285 OBP? What’s that even good for? Am I supposed to use him as an ottoman or something? It’s like they’re not even pretending to try.
So, baseball teams, here I am. I’m thinking short term, NSA, or at least until the Wilpons sell the team. Obviously, this needs to be kept on the DL – DL as in the “down low”, not where the Mets keep their roster – because the Mets are my first love, and they will always have a place in my heart. However, I also can’t waste my life hoping and waiting for them to change. I need the fire, the spark, the excitement again. I want to feel like my team cares about me, I want to feel like they actually want me around. A torrid summer affair? A spring-fall romance? Why not? You could fly me out, buy me dinner, give me good seats – maybe even some post-game fireworks? Because really, I miss the fireworks most of all. Come on teams – make me an offer for my fandom, and we’ll see where it takes us.
KC Royals need not apply.
So that’s what I’ve got. I’m hoping I’ll get at least a few offers, at least from some minor league teams. I think the Red Sox would be the smoothest transition for me, because I already live in New England, I already hate the Yankees, I’m already Irish (and “The Departed” taught me that everyone in Boston is Irish and excessively violent), and my grandfather was a Red Sox fan – I figure it’s in my blood. Plus, cheating with a team in another league isn’t really cheating, right? Right?
Actually, any other team would be acceptable barring the Yankees and Phillies, if only because I’m not that angry with the Mets – at least not yet. Maybe the Dodgers would be a fit? I like Vin Scully and they used to play in Brooklyn. The Brewers look like fun – I love the sausage races and things coated in butter. The Cardinals have the best fans in baseball, so that sounds like a good group to be around. The Mariners have Jack Z, whom I have a huge GM crush on. Even the Bridgeport Bluefish – come on, make me an offer Bluefish.
I’ll still keep up with the Mets, at least for appearances sake. And I’d miss Gary, Keith, and Ron, Mr. Met, and, uh, the hot pretzels guy* in the upper deck too much to ever leave them for good. But I do need an escape. I need the thrill again and not to have to worry about my team stumbling over themselves. Most of all, I don’t want to be embarrassed anymore. It feels so wrong, yet so right – I’m going to have a fan affair.
*This guy: “HOT HOT HOT! THEY’RE SMOKING, I’M NOT JOKING!”
EDIT: After a little googling, it looks like I’m not the first person to try to sell themselves to another team. A Washingston Redskins fan in 2009 and a Chicago Cubs fan in 2008 tried to sell their loyatly on Ebay. However, they should have known that Ebay doesn’t let you sell something that isn’t deliverable, i.e. your loyalty. Thus, I think Craigslist was a good choice. I’m thinking the Yankees will offer me $20mil, 10 years.