The Legend of Cecilio Guante
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Welcome to Mets Bizarro World

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It was June 24th. Slightly more than three months ago. The New York Metropolitans were 36-36. Exactly at .500 and heading straight towards disappointment. Again. My post on this blog was entitled: The New York Mets are What We Thought They Were…which was not, in this case, a good thing. The post went on to lament a pathetic offense, a deeply flawed line-up, a seemingly deflated spirit, all prior to the All-Star break. The post was part venting session. This team is not performing! This team needs more! THIS SEASON was supposed to be the return to relevance. The post was part pure, desperate plea. A call-out to Sandy. In fact, those final words on that day…

Sandy, it’s your play. Hamstrung or not, don’t want to hear it. Bad luck, don’t want to hear it. Waiting for so-and-so to get back, don’t want to hear it. Rough stretch, don’t want to hear it. Address the issues…to the best of your ability. But act. It’s time. In fact, it’s past due. Maybe you’ve been dealt a bad hand, but it’s time to make a move. Otherwise, you might as well just fold…and call it (another) lost season.

Hope is a good thing. Maybe one of the best of things. But our hope for this season is dying, Sandy. Do something to resuscitate it.

Fast-forward to today. If you’re a sports fan, you’ve likely noticed and been incredibly surprised by this team’s performance. But the non-Mets fan has NO IDEA what this is like. I mean,…

And I’m not trying to be funny. I don’t think anyone outside of die-hard Mets fans REALLY understands what this is experience is like. Typically, we lead a very predictable existence. We know what to expect, how and when. We are a generally annoying lot. We bitch incessantly. We’re whiny, moany, woe-is-me, this sh*t only happens to us fans. It’s all we know. It’s what we do. Our team complies and makes it easy. That’s the way it is.

That’s why this whole…this…this…thing. It’s MIND-BLOWING. Nearly incomprehensible. Honestly. In fact, so many of us are fighting it still. We’re still expecting the collapse. Really. Even as countless statistical models show that it’s incredibly unlikely that even the Mets would be able to f something like this up, we can’t accept it. Why? Because, we cannot fathom. Any of it. Does. Not. Compute. The semi-parallel that comes to mind? Remember when Austin Powers watches that video of the last decade he’s missed while being cryogenically frozen? It’s kinda like that. You simply cannot grasp the world in which you now inhabit. There is no frame of reference.

Welcome to Mets Bizarro World. I’m still trying to get a handle on it. Right now, despite this evening’s loss, the Mets sit 21 games over .500. They are perched (I’m told comfortably) atop the NL East Division by an 8.5 game margin. Their magic number…really, I can’t even type some of these things it’s so hard to still get my head around it…is 11. The recent SI Power Rankings had the Mets — THE NEW YORK METS  — fourth in the majors. Like, behind only three teams. Meaning ahead of 25 0thers. They are arguably the hottest team in baseball….with the best second half offense in baseball…and the best hitter in all of baseball. Terry Collins is getting serious discussion at MANAGER OF THE YEAR. Stop me when all of this sound LUDICROUS.

What’s more? Things that never happened…well, they keep happening. Comeback wins. Lucky breaks. Clutch hits. Stuff that happens to, well, winners. And, now, it is all taking place. Consistently.

Sorry, let me once more pause.

OK, I’ll stop with the caps, bold and italics. That doesn’t mean I’ve come to accept any of this. I’m still waiting for the alarm to go off. It would make sense. We actually decided to stand pat at the deadline and are bumbling along towards maybe a .500 finish. Or we  did trade for Carlos Gomez, and he subsequently broke his hip. All that would be logical.

But, apparently, this is real. This thing has happened. It might even continue to happen. Or maybe someone will tell me the Wilmer Flores thing was a hallucination. Nieuwenhuis’s pinch-hit home run a mirage. Oh yes, and Cespedes never donned a Mets uniform. Not even as a rental.

I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop. Because none of this makes sense anymore. I’m like Brooks Hatlen. Maybe I can’t make it on the outside in this new and unfamiliar world. Or maybe, just maybe, we might be poised to soon reach our very own Zihuatanejo.

I hope…

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