The 2009 Mets lived an interesting life even though it ended sooner than we would have liked. They wanted to be your friend throughout the season; the kind of friend that stood by you when you needed one to make you stand up and cheer. Sometimes they succeeded (the last three games of the season) and sometimes they failed (the other 159 games). But they kept trying to be there for us, even when we stopped being there for them. They faced many hardships and took advice from the wrong people. But they still found time to think of us, such as the time they taught me the meaning of the word tendinosis.
I remember once when the Mets told me they were moving away from the home they had lived in since I was born. It was hard seeing them leave. I was thinking I’d never see them again. But they comforted me when they told me that they were just moving beyond the bullpen fence and that we could still be together. It was that kind of thoughtfulness that made them so special to my heart.
What is it that we remember when we think of the 2009 Mets? I think everyone who knew them would agree with me on this. It was their wicked sense of humor. When Oliver Perez was signed for three years and $36 million, we laughed because we knew that signing was a joke. When players such as Jose Reyes, Carlos Delgado and Carlos Beltran went down with injuries, we chuckled every time Omar said they’d be back by the All-Star Break…then August…then September…then only Carlos Beltran would be coming back. When Luis Castillo dropped the pop-up, we laughed because we wanted to blend in with the Yankee fans at Yankee Stadium so that we wouldn’t have to be the butts of their jokes. That is what I will miss the most about the 2009 Mets. They could make me laugh when all I wanted to do was cry (and bang my head repeatedly on a brick on the Fanwalk outside the Jackie Robinson Rotunda). That was their trademark. They did their best to turn our tears into laughter – incredibly demented laughter that once caused the Hospital For Special Surgery to consider opening a mental patient ward. (They did not open one. Apparently, they couldn’t afford the real estate needed for the expansion of the hospital. Too many Mets players had taken up residence there.)
Their death was not sudden. They had been dying a slow death since right before the All-Star Break. The Wilpons refused to pull the plug on the team even when there was no hope of a recovery. Perhaps they should have put them (and us) out of their misery sooner, but had they done that, we would have missed that one final spark of life during the season-ending sweep of the Astros.
The 2009 Mets did many things on this Earth (like educating us on the thousand and one ways to lose ballgames) and I’m sure they will do much more in Heaven. Some angels might be taken out in the process, but they will be able to laugh it off in Heaven the way we were able to do so on Earth.
I will forever be grateful to have known the 2009 Mets. I will forever be grateful that they welcomed me with open arms into their new home. I will forever be grateful for spending six months of my life waiting for my food at Shake Shack. All the memories I have shared with them will forever be cherished and remembered until I forget them. The Mets will forever live in my heart…in our hearts. The heartburn is just a coincidence.
In conclusion, this is not the time for us to grieve the death of the 2009 Mets, but it’s time to celebrate their lives, all nine of them. They kept playing until the schedule told them they couldn’t play anymore. They kept trying to come back to play ball despite their injuries so that we wouldn’t spend the first six innings of the game tailgating, not knowing (or caring) that there was a game going on inside. They showed us how not to run the bases by making those mistakes for us so we could learn from them. That shows how much they thought about us and how much we should think about them.
So at this moment when we are about to lay this season to rest, let’s all think back and remember how the 2009 Mets made an impact on our lives. This is not the moment for us to shed our tears but we should all be thankful that we were given the chance to have known a team called the 2009 Mets. They will be missed but I know in time (like in six months or so), I will meet the Mets again. We will all meet the Mets again and I’m sure they’ll make us laugh again, hopefully for the right reasons this time.