Mets Merized Online » Non-Baseball http://metsmerizedonline.com Sun, 31 Jan 2016 18:30:04 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.8.12 MMO Honors The Spirit Of Martin Luther King Jr. http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/01/mmo-honors-the-spirit-of-martin-luther-king-jr.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2016/01/mmo-honors-the-spirit-of-martin-luther-king-jr.html/#comments Mon, 18 Jan 2016 05:09:15 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=204492 Martin-Luther-King-Jr.-January-15-1929-–-April-4-1968

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that.”

When you think about freedom, you think about being able to walk down the street and enjoy the sights and the sounds; take a drive to anywhere across this great nation of ours and enjoy every aspect of it; go to a ball game with friends and family and join thousands of others that might be from different walks of life but have the same interest in common; to root for the home team, or maybe even the visiting team, depending on their preference.

But if you really look at the opportunity we all share to live in harmony, one of the greatest men who helped to make this a reality and someone that I am forever grateful to is Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, for paving the way for all of us to equally enjoy such freedoms.

Now, we can not take away the many sacrifices that our armed forces and veterans have made to protect us all from the people that want to destroy the way we live, but for the purpose of this post I wanted to honor a man that stood up to adversity and fought for civil rights between whites, blacks and people from all races, ethnicities, and walks of life. That they may be equal, and grow and live together without discrimination in the greatest democracy the world has ever known. Dr. King knew that this great nation of ours was missing something, and when he made that march to Washington, he changed not only a Nation, but a World.

We see that evidence in our own backyard, in other nations, and especially in our National Pastime.  In Baseball, you see that right away, with players coming from all over the world, to join and compete with fellow athletes for a common goal.

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No longer are teams segregated like they were prior to the late 1940′s when Jackie Robinson became the first African-American to break the color barrier in the major leagues.  Robinson’s courage also paved the way for players like Roberto Clemente, who was the first Latin American superstar in Major League Baseball and lived his life giving back to others and becoming a symbol of Latin American pride. Masanori Murakami, who made his debut in 1964 with the San Francisco Giants, was the first ever Japanese baseball player to make his mark on the game.

The sacrifices that these and many men and women have made, and the willingness of one man to push back the norm, changed the way most if not all of us look at each other.

We have come a long way as a nation and as a sport, and as we continue to move forward, the greatest gift that we can share with the next generation is the life and courage of all the brave men and women that have fought for our freedoms especially Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Happy Birthday to a Great American and a man that forever changed the landscape of our great nation: Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

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Some May Say He’s A Dreamer… http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/12/some-may-say-hes-a-dreamer-but-hes-not-the-only-one-2.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/12/some-may-say-hes-a-dreamer-but-hes-not-the-only-one-2.html/#comments Tue, 08 Dec 2015 05:16:47 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=102427 john lennon 2

“I’m not claiming divinity. I’ve never claimed purity of soul. I’ve never claimed to have the answers to life. I only put out songs and answer questions as honestly as I can… But I still believe in peace, love and understanding.”

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“When I was 5 years old, my mother always told me that happiness was the key to life. When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down ‘happy’. They told me I didn’t understand the assignment, and I told them they didn’t understand life.”

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October 8, 1940 – December 8, 1980

It’s December 8th, and it was 35 years ago today that the world lost one of the most influential musicians and composers it has ever known. More than that, John Lennon was was a shining light in a dark and uncertain world who believed that love and peace were not just concepts, but parallel roads to a perfect society.

We still mourn the passing of this extraordinary man whose unwavering spirit still touches millions today. I’ll never forget the night he was shot down and taken away from us in the prime of his life. He taught us that it was okay to dream…

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Remembering September 11 http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/09/remembering-september-11.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/09/remembering-september-11.html/#comments Fri, 11 Sep 2015 04:16:05 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=193256 1441979316590

What a beautiful building and such a majestic tribute to the memory of those tragic events of 9/11. Even the name, the Freedom Tower, is so perfectly symbolic as it stands for liberty, democracy and victory for our way of life.

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I wanted to take a moment to remember all those victims both living and deceased and honor them as we mark the somber anniversary of that fateful day.

Our support and gratitude go out to all the troops and first responders who still put their lives on the line every day so that we can go on living our lives and building our dreams.

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Freedom and liberty can mean a million different things to a million different people, but there is one common truth that our differences cannot dissuade. Freedom is as fragile or as strong as the will of those who are willing to defend it.

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Happy Independence Day From MMO! http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/07/happy-independence-day-from-mmo.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/07/happy-independence-day-from-mmo.html/#comments Sat, 04 Jul 2015 12:00:15 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=123796 4th-of-july-fireworks-nyc

It’s that time of the year again when we celebrate the birth of an ideal and of the greatest nation in the world.

While we enjoy all the grilling and all the fireworks with our friends and families today, let’s take a moment to remember all the sacrifices that were made to make this celebration of freedom possible.

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We also want to thank all the service men and women who keep freedom ringing for all of us both at home and abroad. Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness doesn’t come cheap…

Happy Birthday, America!

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Opening Day From Verizon Suite http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/04/opening-day-from-the-verizon-suite.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/04/opening-day-from-the-verizon-suite.html/#comments Wed, 15 Apr 2015 10:00:15 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=179028 jacob degrom

It was an awesome experience to be able to take in the Mets opening day game on Monday against the Phillies from the Verizon Wireless Suite. We can’t thank the company enough for this awesome experience and opportunity to watch the game from such a unique perspective.

The Verizon suite is located just above the last row of the field level seats. Upon entering, I was greeted by a server who asked me what I would like to drink and insisted I get started on some finger foods that were set out as appetizers. Great food and a couple beers added to a fantastic experience.

One of the most unique parts of the day was being equipped with the brand new Ellipsis 8 tablet. I had little to no experience using any sort of tablet in my life so this truly felt like an innovative piece of technology in my hand. It has a clear, high definition display that is easy to navigate.

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The device was especially useful as a member of the media. It was extremely accessible especially in terms of monitoring and posting on social media, Instagram and Twitter especially. The Ellipsis also has a quality camera on it with a panorama option which made for some unique pictures.

I was speaking with other bloggers in the suite (this event was specifically targeted for bloggers) and we all agreed that our favorite quality about the tablet was that it was a perfect size. It was big enough where pictures seemed to be in a higher quality then on my computer or my iPhone.

The keyboard took some getting used to like any touch screen keyboard would of that size. I remember it took me some time to master the iPhone touch screen and now I would consider myself a very fast typer on it. I would imagine that with some practice, I would become more and more competent with the device. There was a certain level of autonomy I felt with this device. I was able to do other things like easily manage my fantasy baseball lineups, check Facebook posts and look things up on the Google Chrome browser. There is even an option to sync your Verizon cellphone with the tablet so you can receive and answer your text messages on it.

Obviously, the result was the biggest factor into my enjoyment of the game. It was a pitching duel between the reigning Rookie-Of-The-Year Jacob deGrom and the veteran Aaron Harang. DeGrom did not disappoint, pitching 6.1 innings with three strikeouts and no earned runs while earning the win. Both teams struggled offensively during the game.

I had an incredible angle for a couple plays involving Lucas Duda. The suite was lined up with home plate and first base. The first play was the laser that was hit. The batter who hit it escapes me and I want to say it was Chase Utley. Anyway, Duda took one step back and picked the hotshot that was hit at him and took it to the bag for the out. It got me thinking on Duda’s improvement as a player.

Sure, Duda earns his paycheck with his bat, clubbing 30 home runs a year ago. However, he has came a long way since the Mets traded Ike Davis and gave Duda the reigns permanently. I remember watching Davis flip into the stands a bunch and thought of him as a future gold glover. I won’t go as far as saying Duda will win that award, but he sure has improved and mostly looks so comfortable over there.

Second, Duda crushed a ball that tailed foul down the right field line. It went about 15 rows up in the second deck and was about 20 feet foul. This hit was just a monster and it sparked some electricity in the ballpark even though it was foul. It has seemed that the Mets haven’t had a real offensive star emerge ever since David Wright and Jose Reyes in the mid 2000′s. Duda seems to be breaking that trend and it seems that pitchers are taking notice. He is a feared hitter in the National League.

All in all, it was a fantastic day. There is no beer as refreshing as the one you’re drinking at a ballpark. The Mets took the victory behind a fantastic start. And I can’t thank Verizon enough for being incredible hosts and providing me with a fun and unique experience on Opening Day.

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Due To Huge Demand, Mets Announce Second Foo Fighters Performance At Citi Field http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/01/due-to-huge-demand-mets-announce-second-foo-fighters-performance-at-citi-field.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/01/due-to-huge-demand-mets-announce-second-foo-fighters-performance-at-citi-field.html/#comments Thu, 29 Jan 2015 13:07:08 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=173972 foo fighters david grohl

Due to overwhelming demand, the New York Mets and Live Nation have announced that the Foo Fighters will perform a second show at Citi Field, Wednesday, July 15.

Tickets will go on sale at Mets.com/FooFighters and by phone at (718) 507-TIXX this Friday, January 30 at 10:00 a.m.

The July 15th performance by the multi-platinum and Grammy Award-winning American rockers was added after the Thursday, July 16 show sold out.

Over the course of the band’s career, four of its albums have won Grammy Awards for Best Rock Album. The band’s seventh studio album, Wasting Light, was released in 2011 and as of May 2014, the band’s seven albums have sold a combined 11.1 million copies. The band’s eighth studio album, Sonic Highways, was released in November 2014.

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Send Us Your Mets Themed Holiday Favorites! http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/12/send-us-your-mets-themed-holiday-favorites.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/12/send-us-your-mets-themed-holiday-favorites.html/#comments Sat, 13 Dec 2014 17:37:50 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=171734 christmas-carolers-1

MetsMerized and WIOX radio are teaming up again to present their second annual Mets Themed Christmas Tip-Off radio show.  Every holiday season, Tip-Off radio hosts John Bernhardt and Randy VanKeuren dedicate the lion’s share of their last radio show before Christmas to Mets themed holiday carols.  MetsMerized readers write these Mets themed carols that they submit to WIOX.  John and Randy then select their favorites and sing those tunes on their final Friday morning radio show before Christmas.  Selected Mets themed carols are also posted on MetsMerized.

Historically, the final Tip-Off hour before Christmas was dedicated to performing the New York sports themed carols featured annually in Mike Vaccaro’s New York Post column every Sunday before Christmas. Last winter with Joe DeCaro’s blessing, Tip-Off and MetsMerized joined forces to provide Met fans with an opportunity to get their creative juices flowing and creating Met themed holiday carols. It’s a lot of fun!

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Here’s how it works. Your task is to reshape the lyrics of a traditional holiday favorite around something to do with the Mets.  Write a short bio we could use to introduce you should we select your song to perform.  Include who you are, where you’re from, your occupation, and something about the joys of being a Mets fan. Then e-mail your song and bio to us at wioxedu@gmail.com.

Randy and I will review the entries, select seven or eight to perform, set them to music and presto, on Friday, we’ll be talking about you and performing your songs on our Winning entries will hear their holiday favorites performed by John and Randy during the December 19th Friday morning Tip-Off radio show. Show us what you’ve got and unleash your creativity and your passion for the Mets!

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Happy Thanksgiving Day From Metsmerized http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/11/happy-thanksgiving-from-mmo-2.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/11/happy-thanksgiving-from-mmo-2.html/#comments Thu, 27 Nov 2014 12:00:08 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=133936 Macys-Parade

On behalf of everyone at Metsmerized Online, we would like to wish all of you a very Happy Thanksgiving. Have a wonderful day and make some great memories with your friends, families and loved ones.

It’s always such an enormous pleasure to share our opinions and interact with the greatest and most passionate baseball fans in the world – Mets Fans. Our passion for the Mets binds all of us together, and though we may not always agree on how to get there, we still all share one common goal and that is to see the Mets win another World Series… Or two… Or three…  It’s an honor to serve you these last ten years and we look forward to ten more.

We also send our thanks to all of the brave men and women who continue to serve our country and defend our American way of life. Our thoughts are always with them and we honor their incredible courage and commitment to protecting our freedom and values.

Happy Thanksgiving Day, everyone!

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Remembering 9/11: Never Forget http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/09/remembering-911-never-forget.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/09/remembering-911-never-forget.html/#comments Thu, 11 Sep 2014 03:51:58 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=165462 coffin soldier

Time does not heal all wounds.

The pain of what happened on September 11th, 2001 has not subsided. We can put the tragedy of what took place on that day in the back of our minds, but we can never put it out of our hearts.

Lets take some time to remember those victims and honor them. Let’s also take a few minutes to remember and honor those who still put their lives on the line every single waking hour, so that we here at home can go on living our lives and rebuilding the dreams that perished on that fateful day.

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It took 10 days for baseball games to resume after 9/11, and then-New York mayor Rudolph Giuliani would say, “It’s how much baseball means to people and what it can do for a community, what it can do for a country.”

The first game back was at Shea Stadium. The Mets/Braves game on September 21, 2001 was the first sporting event that would ever be held in NY in a Post 9-11 America. Piazza said it was impossible to describe what he felt when he hit the two-run homer in the eighth inning that lifted the Mets to a 3-2 win.

“Every time I get back to New York, anywhere I go, even here just walking on the street,  people do say that moment helped them try to turn the page a little bit and give them a little bit of a positive in an otherwise dark week,” he says now. “To be remembered for one home run, if that’s the home run, it’s definitely an honor .”

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The best way to honor the fallen is to go on living our lives and cherishing the freedom for which they died defending.

The best way to honor the heroes who still fight to preserve our way of life, is to live our lives in a manner that is worth defending, and to reflect the values and the virtues of being an American, every single day.

Freedom and liberty can mean a million different things to a million different people, but there is one common truth that our differences cannot dissuade. Freedom is as fragile or as strong as the will of those who are willing to defend it.

Support Our Troops, Remember September 11th, and Be Proud to be an American.

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Welcome To A Fresh New MMO http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/02/welcome-to-a-fresh-new-mmo.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/02/welcome-to-a-fresh-new-mmo.html/#comments Sat, 22 Feb 2014 20:36:51 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=148229 Welcome to the newer, faster, and streamlined Metsmerized Online. Last weekend we launched the most comprehensive redesign of our site since we first launched in 2005.

Everything has been made over and given a fresh, new and team-appropriate look and feel. In addition to a new home page, we’ve redone our article pages, transitioned to new readable Google fonts, added new and faster navigation, included some wicked cool sharing tools that will be up shortly, and other new stuff. In fact, we changed just about everything except the content itself: Your favorite writers, articles, features, and interviews are all still here – they just look a thousand times better!

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Why the need for the redesign? One reason is that MMO is much bigger than it used to be. We publish three times as many stories as we did three years ago. Where we once had a handful of writers, we now have over 40 regular contributors. Our new home page and navigation tools will allow us to make it easier for you, our readers, to keep up with every great post and every important news update on the Mets.

A second reason is that we did it because it was time. Over the years a website can become encrusted with so much noise and modules and widgets and text links, that we wanted to get rid of all the unnecessary junk and clean things up so that MMO would feel fresh and new.

One of the problems with blogs in general is that, if you post content quite regularly, there is a danger that some of that great content will get lost in The Neverland. That is when it is bumped down the page by new content until it moves off the first page altogether.

We did not want you to miss out on all the great content our site has to offer each day. While the average site posts 2-3 times a day, on MMO we produce about 12-15 articles per day on average. With our new Popular Post module on the sidebar, you’ll be able to see the hottest articles and the most active debates of the last 48 hours spanning the last week.

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Also, whereas previously we were only able to show you six articles on our front page, we can now increase that number to ten and not only that, but our page loads 5.5 seconds faster. That may not sound like a lot, but webdesign and SEO experts will all tell you that any site that takes longer than 8 seconds to load is doing a disservice to their readers.

Some of you may look at the site and see a clean, responsive and enhanced MMO now. While others may be longing for our previous them. The truth is that in time you will all come to appreciate what we’ve tried to accomplish here and that is to enrich your overall experience.

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Only 30 Days and Disqus Has Been Phenomenal!

By now, all of you have seen the great and positive impact the change in our commenting platform has made. The debates are now stimulating, intellectual and in truth, what we always wanted to see in our threads.

In the last 30 days, we’ve added over 8,000 more readers per day to a new high of 32,000 people checking in every day to our site. Also, for the first time, we now have increased reader participation by virtue of the over 1,000 new registered commenters in the past 5 weeks alone.

That’s insane, but you don’t need me to tell you that as the proof is in the almost 25,000 comments in the last 30 days, up from 9,500 in November and December. Thank you so much for making our transition to Disqus such an extraordinary success, so much so that Disqus has just included MMO as one of their Top 2014 Sites – amazing to be listed among other great sites such as MLB Trade Rumors.

GAME THREADS ARE COMING BACK TO MMO!

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100% Responsive Mobile Platform

Over 60% of our readership – a brand new majority – access this site via a smartphone or tablet now. That is triple the number from just a year ago. The world is moving faster. It was important for us to deliver a responsive design that will take us into a new age of site advancements and web surfing. After months of testing and development, we can now say we’ve accomplished that mission.

Of course, with every new site redesign there are glitches.

Please let us know if you have any problems and I will work to resolve any and all issues until we’ve nipped them all in the bud.

Let us know what device and browser you are using so that we can better troubleshoot the problem for you. We may have some fixes we can already send you.

Email us at admin@metsmerizedonline.com.

This is your site and not ours. Without you there is no community. From day one we’ve always called MMO a fan site and not a blog and that was because we wanted to give you the power to steer the direction of this site.

Our redesign is not fully completed yet. Over the next 30 days expect to see even more enhancements and modifications. We’re not stopping until it’s perfect.

As always, thank you so much for your overwhelming support. As we begin our tenth season of covering the Mets, we are still humbled that so many of you choose Metsmerized Online as a daily destination.

Best Always, and Lets Go Mets!

Presented By Diehards

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Humiliation Macho: Dolphins, Mets, and the Pale Blue Line of Cowardly Male Sports Culture http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/11/humiliation-macho-dolphins-mets-and-the-pale-blue-line-of-cowardly-male-sports-culture.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/11/humiliation-macho-dolphins-mets-and-the-pale-blue-line-of-cowardly-male-sports-culture.html/#comments Fri, 08 Nov 2013 14:00:49 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=132422 Photo by @nymets

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Multiple choice question: What’s the worst, lowest, most humiliating thing you can call a professional athlete in a modern-day locker room?

1. Gay.

2. Girl.

3. N****r.

4. All of the above.

If you answered “4″ we have a lovely Jordany Valdespin T-shirt for you, a real beauty with the logos of both the Mets and Pirates on it, a veritable collector’s item commemorating one of the slimiest moments in recent Mets history, when the team outsourced its discipline to an opposing pitcher. As an added bonus, you’ll get a Richie Incognito poster autographed by Terry Collins and 90 percent of all professional coaches who adopt the lame, pass-the-buck motto of “what happens in the locker room stays in the locker room” currently on such hideous, nauseating display in Miami. Act now, and we’ll throw in authentic baseball cards of Mets rookies forced by tradition – and their knuckle-dragging “veteran” peers – to dress up as women because….you know…nothing’s more humiliating than being female.

Male sports culture is at a low ebb, and quite frankly it’s drifting rapidly away from a quickly liberalizing society that increasingly values diversity and tolerance. In doing so, that culture is telling every young millennial sports fan with a few dollars to spend to go someplace else. For every mongo from the suburbs who relishes his lost high school years as a bully and digs the humiliation of women, homosexuals, and minorities there are many others who love athletic competition and the pageantry of sport – but who will recoil instinctively from a testosterone soaked puddle of intolerance.

There is a line from the disgraceful treatment of a teammate by the now-toxic Incognito (who will probably never put an NFL uniform on again) through to the lame sticking of rookies with exorbitant steak house dinners to the pathetic “tradition” teams like your New York Mets have of engaging in gender-based humiliation and hazing programs – approved by management – to show the rookies what “The Show” is really all about. The message is clear: this is a male culture that prefers the old ways, and we’ll keep it that way.

In the end, it’s cowardice, I think. Teammates rally around the player accused of bullying, and blame the victim. Players defend “traditions” as part of the game, and uphold the “unwritten rules” that places flamboyant young performers like Valdespin and the Dodgers’ Yasiel Puig in the crosshairs of coach potato traditionalists, who call sports radio talk shows to blather on about men being men, boys being boys. Voices who talk a big game on Francesa’s show (and kudos to the big fellow for taking a strong stand), living out some fantasy of macho male dominance in a changing world they don’t know how to cope with.

The teams and their culture are deeply misguided. But you know the standard language as well as I do:

Marlon Byrd: “The Pirates did what you were supposed to do. They just sent a message that you don’t do that.”

Terry Collins: “I don’t care what the fans think. This is the big leagues. It’s a big-man’s game.”

LaTroy Hawkins: “He showed absolutely no respect. If you’re going to pimp it, you’re going to suffer the consequences.”

Roger McDowell: “Are you guys a homo couple or a threesome?”

Richie Incognito: “(I’m going to) slap your (expletive) mouth. (I’m going to) slap your real mother across the face (laughter)….wassup, you half n—– piece of (expletive).”

Antrel Rolle: “I think the other guy [Martin] is just as much to blame because he’s allowed it to happen….You know, at this level, you’re a man. You’re not a little boy. You’re not a freshman in college. You’re a man.”

Tyson Clabo: ”What’s perceived is that Richie is this psychopath racist, and the reality is Richie was a pretty good teammate.”

See the pattern there? Martin should have stuck up for himself against hazing – but remember when Valdespin did that when his shirt was torn up, and how that was portrayed? Knuckle under, young man. The culture demands it. Be a man about it.

Grantland’s Brian Phillips has this exactly right, but I’d extend his analysis to all pro sports, not just football:

I love football — it’s so much fun, it’s beautiful, it’s thrilling, it’s an excuse to drunk-tweet in the mid-afternoon — but it has also become the major theater of American masculine crackup. It’s as if we’re a nation of gentle accountants and customer-service reps who’ve retained this one venue where we can air-guitar the berserk discourse of a warrior race.

All this clubhouse hazing, this macho posturing, this humiliation and gender-bashing should simply end. As fans, we pay to watch a competition in a sport that we love. I don’t care about hazing rituals at all, and I don’t think they make teams play better ball in any way.

And then there’s this thought for a rainy November day: who the hell wants to see Noah Syndergaard in drag next season any way?

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MMO Flashback: We Rebuild, But We Never Forget http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/09/mmo-flashback-we-rebuild-but-we-never-forget.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/09/mmo-flashback-we-rebuild-but-we-never-forget.html/#comments Wed, 11 Sep 2013 13:46:55 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=95858 WP_000108

Photo By Clayton Collier

The fires are long extinguished, the debris has been cleared from the streets, the rebuilding is well underway at Ground Zero, but the wounds are very much still open.

9/11 is a day that is still very heavy on the hearts of every New Yorker, and every American. One is hard pressed to find anyone in the Tri-State area that didn’t know someone, or knew someone that knew someone, who was in Lower Manhattan on the day the towers fell. The shock has not yet faded, videos and photos of the attack, the pain on the faces throughout the world still sends shivers down our spines. Yet here we are, 11 years later, emerging from the ashes as a stronger nation. We are damaged, we are wounded, but we have emerged bolder, wiser and proud to call ourselves citizens of the United States.

Ground Zero has been transcended from a smoldering pile of death and anguish, into a place of healing. It is a location for families –like those pictured above– who never received anything from their fallen loved ones to go for a sense of closure. The reflecting pools list the names of all 2,996 Americans who went to work, boarded a plane, or put on an oxygen mask on that day and did not return as well as the half of a dozen who perished in the bombing in 1993. As someone who has seen the memorial first hand, I can say from a first hand experience, that it brings unwelcome memories to the forefront of your mind and makes everything seem much more real, however at the same time has an eerie, calming silence.

911-memorial-at-night-31n1

It is a place of serenity, a place of peace, a place for mourning, but a symbol as well. It shows us that we are rebuilding, the new World Trade Centers are nearing completion, life will once again be revived into zip code 10048, but we will always remember. That horrific day is etched in the minds of all of us, whether we want it to or not.

That day is now twelve years old, but it feels like just yesterday. Today is a day for mourning, for remembrance, but also a day to show that we may be damaged, we may be wounded, but America will never falter and we will ultimately emerge stronger and stronger than ever before.

“Time is passing. Yet, for the United States of America, there will be no forgetting September the 11th. We will remember every rescuer who died in honor. We will remember every family that lives in grief. We will remember the fire and ash, the last phone calls, the funerals of the children.”

- President George W. Bush, Nov. 11, 2001

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Featured Post: Harvey Was Not The Hero We Deserved, But The One We Needed http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/08/featured-post-harvey-was-not-the-hero-we-deserved-but-the-one-we-needed.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/08/featured-post-harvey-was-not-the-hero-we-deserved-but-the-one-we-needed.html/#comments Wed, 28 Aug 2013 12:09:01 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=127920 MLB: Arizona Diamondbacks at New York Mets

Matt Harvey is going to miss a significant amount of time; not much else is known at this moment.

What has been well-documented however, is just how much of an impact the Dark Knight of Gotham has had on the New York Mets organization and their fans alike.

The mood surrounding this franchise has plunged further and further into disappointment, animosity and frustration ever since Adam Wainwright‘s infamous breaking ball struck the black leather of Yadier Molina‘s mitt. After back-to-back September collapses and pair of sub-par seasons, a change in management brought hope of brighter days, however the immediate years following only became more gut-wrenching. Since Sandy Alderson took over following the 2010 season, fans have had to endure the departures of Jose Reyes, Carlos Beltran, and R.A. Dickey to name a few; all on the premise of a brighter tomorrow through the procuring of young talent at the expense of the performance at the major league level.

the future

The 2013 season has marked the infusion of those farmhands that have been so long awaited. Zack Wheeler is proving his 2011 acquisition to be worth while. The Amazin’s are already enjoying the fruits of their labor from the Dickey deal with Travis d’Arnaud behind the dish. Following years of development and growth since their mid-teens, Juan Lagares and Wilmer Flores have finally made it to the show. All have been encouraging and enormously exciting to watch, but all pale in comparison to the energy generated by the emergence of Matt Harvey.

In his first full season–sans their ailing, aged ace in Johan Santana–Harvey exploded out of the gate, quickly gaining national attention. By the third week of April, contests in which he started became not a Mets game, but ‘Harvey Day’. Fans amassed in the stands of Citi Field to see the most exciting young pitcher in Queens since 1984, just to get a glimpse of his increasingly legendary “stuff”. By May, the 24-year old flamethrower was plastered on the cover of Sports Illustrated, the first time a player in orange-and-blue had received such an esteem in nearly five years.

From then on it just got better; Harvey could not be stopped. Anytime he went to the mound, a no-hitter was more than possible, three times becoming probable with bids into the seventh inning. Eventually it all came to a pinnacle when Bruce Bochy named the Mets’ ace to the incredibly rare honor of starting the All-Star Game at his home ballpark, going on to put up two goose eggs for the National League including three strikeouts, one of which being the reigning Triple-Crown Winner.

harvey wrightSince the mid-summer classic,  the master “plan” of the future has become the present with the arrival of the organization’s top prospects converging on Roosevelt Avenue. ESPN has tagged the Mets as the team of the future in New York; baseball media hubs across the country have begun to recognize the Amazin’s as a club on the rise and no longer in the doldrums of mediocrity.

All was going so well until yesterday when a sobering MRI revealed the ulnar collateral ligament of Harvey lying in his right elbow with a partial tear, crushing many with the very real possibility of the Mets being without one of the game’s best hurlers until 2015.

Until Harvey returns, his absence will be felt in the worst of ways; but his effect on this entire franchise will remain. He has turned another year of “punting” into a season of new beginnings. His performance along with his demeanor has single-handedly altered the culture surrounding the Mets from the second fiddle team of New York to the club to watch out for. The fanbase has wholly changed from beleaguered to stimulated; apathetic to optimistic.

The Mets had to have this year. They desperately needed a season that portrayed direction rather than a ship lost at sea. Matt Harvey has given the Mets that; he has granted them a new look and a new hope, and will return.

The Dark Knight will rise once again. When, we don’t know just yet; but whether that is in one month or twelve, the 2013 season will go down as the year that the corner has officially been turned in Gotham, and that is largely in part to Harvey; and nothing can take that away.

For he truly is the hero not that we deserved, but the one that we needed.

the dark knight matt-harvey

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Priorities Realigned As Terrorism Takes Aim At The Sports World http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/04/priorities-realigned-as-terrorism-takes-aim-at-the-sports-world.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/04/priorities-realigned-as-terrorism-takes-aim-at-the-sports-world.html/#comments Tue, 16 Apr 2013 12:00:42 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=114755 boston-marathon-explosion-horizontal-gallery

The world awakens this morning seeking to right itself after a pair of explosions rocked Boston yesterday afternoon.  Lost are three souls, with no fewer than another one hundred and thirty-two injured.  Also lost in the day’s events, a nation’s sense of security when it comes to sporting events.

Long thought to be a potential target, major sporting events are often subjected to increased security measures.  To date, the United States had been successful (or lucky depending upon your point of view) to avoid such disasters, however April 15, 2013 will live on in infamy as the day the sports world was no longer immune to a direct attack.

The aftereffects of yesterday’s events remain to be seen, but as families, the city of Boston and the nation as a whole mourn this loss, its fair to assume that our shattered sense of security will send ripples through the sports world.  Decreased attendance can only be countered by increased protection in an effort to reassure fans that they’re safe.  At what point will your trip to the stadium resemble a tour through your local prison system?  At what point are fans treated like inmates? More importantly, at what point is such treatment necessary?

Boston-marathon-woman-crying_2930351Long gone is the innocence of physically attending a game, ruined by the majority of fans who feel the price of admission grants them the freedom to drink like a fish and curse like a sailor without repercussion.  That arrogance, until yesterday thought by most to be the worst you could encounter during a trip to the ballpark, is now miniscule by comparison to the violence seen in the past twenty-four hours.  So what now?

Ultimately, too much energy is lost debating the successes and more frequently, the failures of our favorite sports franchises.  That faux pas takes place on a daily basis throughout social media and on sites just like this one.  I’m just as guilty as many of your reading this.  We’re debating a game..something that shouldn’t be life or death.  Its unfortunate that it takes such tragedy for things to fall in line once again, but it has become apparent that this is the world we live in now.  So remember, the next time your headed out to Citi Field, be cognizant of those around you, because not everyone is on the same team.

Follow me on Twitter at @RobPatterson83.

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We Miss You, Adam http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/03/we-miss-you-adam.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/03/we-miss-you-adam.html/#comments Tue, 12 Mar 2013 14:30:24 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=110591 There has been a lot of talk about heroes around here lately… and I think it is time I told a story about a hero of my own. Ever come across somebody in your life that you just knew was impossible to dislike? Their inner core, nay, their soul was glowing with such warmth that you knew they could put a smile on your face no matter how bad your day was? Yeah…that was Adam.

Adam Baker, an incredible man and once writer for MMO, passed away about two years ago now. Joe D. and myself found out around March 11th that he had passed away, a little over a week after the tragic event, and the news hit us hard. I still remember the whole time period vividly and I remember Joe’s emotional post on the subject. adam baker

I tried to stay strong on the subject… I really did, but a few days later in school, I was sitting alone re-reading that same post by Joe when I burst into tears. My mentor, a man I had cherished as a father figure and dear friend, was gone. I never even had a chance to say goodbye. It just was not fair. But Adam, a source of eternal positive feelings, would not have wanted me to be so sad.

It was against everything he believed in. He was able to make so many people happy and quite frequently as well – it did not even seem like he had to try…it all came natural to him. His great sense of humor always had me chuckling at something, as he was frequently calling me a mack daddy or making some fart joke. He also had a way of reassuring me that everything would always work out…there are often days where I could still use that.

From a man who had enough reason to be a sad and bitter creature, it was inspiring to me to see that he not only generated optimism out of nowhere – but spread it to those around him. He touched many people, and often went out of his way to make special gestures to make them smile. I remember one day specifically, when I was feeling rather sour, and Adam messaged me with a photograph. He had created me as a starting pitcher in his MLB: The Show Game… and to this day, I still have a blurry .JPEG of a starting pitcher with the last name “RAM” on the back.

Speaking of jerseys, Big Daddy Baker was buried in a Mets jersey… the man was a Mets fan all his life and he took it to heaven with him. Heroes do not always wear baseball jerseys, but this one did. In fact, the only reason I write here on MMO today was his encouragement. He pushed me to reach out to Joe D., seeing something in me that I still to this day fail to see in myself…and it eventually led to my placement as a contributing writer on the site.

When he first passed away, I really could not find a way to explain what I felt. Yet when it all hit me, I could have written a book on not only how much it affected me…but how thankful I was. I was lucky to have such a wonderful human being in my life – and even luckier that he effectively took me under his wing and guided me to success. He read every single one of my early posts and fed me encouragement to keep going… I just hope he would have been proud of me today.

Adam, I miss you man… I really do. You gave me so much happiness, introduced me to Scrubs (which brought me more happiness, mind you), and 10,000 words would not be enough for me to express my gratitude for everything. I need some of your positive ideas around here to give me a reason to spread hope again. You kept me optimistic and you found things to believe in with the Mets that made everything seem better. The 2013 season approaches quickly, and I had, for a split second, wondered how I felt about the whole ordeal.

But it did not take me long to remember you, old friend. So I will watch – and I will write too. Not only do I owe you that much, but…it’s baseball season. How could I hate baseball? We could have lost every game and you and I would have still found a reason to watch, right?

People like you make me proud to be a Mets fan – you were the gold standard. As you rest peacefully, I hope they gave you something better than SNY in heaven…because I know you’d still be looking for a way to watch the Mets. With misty eyes, I know that I am by far not the only one who remembers you – and remembers you so fondly. So on this day, Adam Baker, I thank you once again because if I know you, you’re still looking out for me..

A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives…so by my count man, you were the most important person in the world. I miss you today, I missed you yesterday, and I will miss you every day going forward…and not as Perseus or anything like that – as Satish Ram, the once 14-year old boy that you inspired so long ago.

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MMO Commenting Policy http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/01/mmo-commenting-policy.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2013/01/mmo-commenting-policy.html/#comments Fri, 18 Jan 2013 19:17:58 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=104889 vader civil comments

Updated 1/18

I just had to delete 67 comments from readers and writer alike. Still more to chop, but seriously what gives? Why must some of you engage in a wicked game of “johnny on the pony” and only add to the situation we are trying to rectify?

What’s with this new thing of everyone calling each other out because they have an “agenda”?

Everyone accusing the other of having an agenda? That’s rich… It’s also juvenile and ignorant…

If you use the word than you probably are the one with the agenda, because it takes one to know one.

If you group people you will have your comments deleted and you will go into moderation…

Chill the hell out…

Original Post 1/14

Every now and then I find it necessary to delete a comment because it fails to add anything to the debate and is simply an immature or irrational comment whose purpose was mostly to insult an author or reader on this site.

In the past week I’ve had to ban six users from the site. I don’t enjoy banning readers from commenting on the site, but with the huge influx of new readers it’s my responsibility to ensure they have an enjoyable experience. I also owe it to our longtime readers to try and keep the site as clean as possible.

My goal is to raise the level of discourse in the comments, eliminating inappropriate language and insults, and strictly enforcing our commenting policy.

Here’s how it works:

1. You can leave comments and join or start a debate on anything we post on this site. Feel free to agree or disagree with the topic without insulting anyone. As long as you abide by that, you will have no problems and your comments will not be moderated.

2. Any comment that insults another reader or author, will have their comment permanently deleted. Comments are for discussing the topics at hand, and are not a sounding board to vent your dislike of another individual on this site.

3. Once we are forced to delete a comment for violating our comment guidelines as listed below, all future comments by that individual will go into moderation. That means all of your comments will be moderated and only those comments that meet our guidelines will be approved. It could take up to two hours for it to post depending on when an editor gets to it.

4. If your comment is deleted and you go into the moderation process, you will remain in moderation for a minimum of thirty (30) days. If during that period your comments had no further problems, you will immediately become approved to comment freely again. However, if it happens a second time, you will simply be banned.

Comment Guidelines

Because I allow unregistered commenting on this site, I have no other choice than to ask everyone to kindly adhere to these simple rules of common sense and decency when commenting on this site.

  • I believe in free speech, so you are free to debate and post an opposing point of view in any manner you see fit as long as you do it without attacking or insulting another reader, commenter or writer along the way. I will remove any comment that crosses this line.
  • I don’t require that you stay on topic. You can talk about whatever you want, as long as what you have to say has some interest to the readers of this site. What I won’t tolerate is personal attacks or comments intended only to antagonize.
  • If you’re a fan of another team and don’t like the Mets, you are free to post and join the debate. However, if your idea of a debate is “Mets suck”, your comment will be deleted and you will be banned from this site. Go vent somewhere else. This is a website for discussing all MLB topics and issues.
  • Keep your language clean. I don’t swear here, and I’d appreciate if you didn’t either. I’d like for parents to feel comfortable having their kids read this site. I’m no angel, so if I can express myself without profanity, you can, too.
  • Please be respectful. We have fun here disagreeing with each other, but we do it with respect. Hate speech against and individuals or groups will never be tolerated.

By posting a comment to this site, you are agreeing to abide by these rules.

If you see any comments that you find offensive, please contact us immediately at GetMetsmerized@aol.com and we will take care of it. Include a link to the post and the name of the reader who left the comment. This process is completely anonymous.

A link to these Comment Guidelines is always located at the bottom of our site.

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Happy Veteran’s Day From All Of Us At MMO http://metsmerizedonline.com/2012/11/happy-veterans-day-from-all-of-us-at-mmo.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2012/11/happy-veterans-day-from-all-of-us-at-mmo.html/#comments Sun, 11 Nov 2012 05:20:49 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=100515

On behalf of everyone at Mets Merized Online we would like to take some time to remember and honor all of the brave servicemen and women that have served and continue to serve our great country.

Each Veteran’s Day we have an opportunity to recognize all the amazing men and women who make up the greatest military in the world. They faithfully protect our borders and our freedom and our way of life.

With the Manhattan VA shutdown after damages suffered during Hurricane Sandy, tens of thousands of veterans are now being served by the Brooklyn VA where I go for treatment and sometimes volunteer. The lines there are unbelievable now as I was there on Friday. It’s going to be that way for 6-8 months until Manhattan opens again. It’s very tough right now. With many of the active duty troops coming home and needing help physically and psychologically, you can imagine how crammed it is, and the shortage of beds is a growing concern. So hug a veteran today and just say, thanks…

God Bless you all for your unwavering loyalty, patriotism, strength and courage.

Happy Veteran’s Day!

http://youtu.be/oBMT3OMEPwk

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Photos of Citi Field From Hurricane Sandy http://metsmerizedonline.com/2012/10/photos-of-citi-field-from-hurricane-sandy.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2012/10/photos-of-citi-field-from-hurricane-sandy.html/#comments Wed, 31 Oct 2012 15:28:44 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=99844

View from La Guardia Airport of the flooding. In the distance you can see Citi Field

Hurricane Sandy came through the past few days and absolutely battered the tri-state area. Homes are destroyed, millions are without power, the entire transit system is in shambles and a death toll that continues to rise. We have just experienced one of, if not the worst natural disasters in our area’s history, and now is the time to come together and pull through this as one just as we have so many times before.

Many of our readers are obviously in the area in which the destruction has occurred, and we at MMO hope and pray that everyone out there is safe and dry. Our fearless leader Joe D. is currently out of power but getting by so as a result myself and my fellow MMO’er Dan Valis will be keeping things going until the lights come on for him. If you have any questions or need to contact us about anything, you can E-Mail me at maybenextyearmets@yahoo.com or Dan at bigapplemetstalk@yahoo.com.

Many famous areas and key landmarks of the region received severe flooding and sustained significant damage. La Guardia Airport as you see above has been flooded and “extremely damaged”, however the home of our New York Mets, Citi Field, has emerged unscathed. I guess it’s well versed in weathering storms ;-).

For those of you who still have power/internet access, here are some images of Citi Field throughout the storm:

The7Line with photos of Citi Field’s preparations for the storm. You can see they constructed a steel storm barrier around the perimeter o the ballpark.

MTA buses lined up in Citi Field parking lots in an effort to protect them from any potential damage. Courtesy of MTA Flickr page.

 Matthew Zimmerman with the photo above as well as this footage below:

 

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As We Brace For Sandy… http://metsmerizedonline.com/2012/10/as-we-brace-for-sandy.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2012/10/as-we-brace-for-sandy.html/#comments Mon, 29 Oct 2012 19:09:37 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=99696

Across the Eastern seaboard as we huddle for shelter, preparing to weather Hurricane Sandy, three men stand unfazed, with a job still to do no matter what the conditions. At Arlington National Cemetery, the Tomb of the Unknowns will be guarded by three sentinels throughout the course of the hurricane.

Since 1948, the tomb which holds the remains of unidentified soldiers from World War I, World War II, Korea and Vietnam, is guarded around the clock, 24/7, rain or shine, and that theme will hold true for this storm.

So throughout the course of the storm, keep these brave man in your thoughts, as well as the two missing crew members of the HMS Bounty, a 180-foot replica of the “Mutiny on the Bounty” that sank off the coast of North Carolina. The ship often comes into my town –I’ve been on the ship several times– and the owner is a family friend of ours. Several people I know have worked as crew members aboard the ship and at this time we’re unsure if any of them were aboard.

Everyone please stay safe throughout the course of this storm, and keep those in harm’s way in your thoughts and prayers.

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An American Hero Passes Away As A Nation Mourns http://metsmerizedonline.com/2012/08/an-american-hero-passes-away-as-a-nation-mourns.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2012/08/an-american-hero-passes-away-as-a-nation-mourns.html/#comments Sun, 26 Aug 2012 01:49:41 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=94267

Iconic American astronaut Neil Armstrong, who was the first person to walk on the moon, has died at the age of 82, his family said on Saturday.

Armstrong died following complications from heart-bypass surgery he underwent earlier this month, the family said in a statement, just two days after his birthday on August 5.

As commander of the Apollo 11 mission, Armstrong became the first human to set foot on the moon on July 20, 1969.

As he stepped off the ladder of the lunar module and onto the moon’s surface, Armstrong uttered those timeless words:

““That’s one small step for man, and one giant leap for mankind.”

It was a defining moment for human history and our world was changed forever.

In a statement from the White House, President Obama said:

“Neil was among the greatest of American heroes. When Neil stepped foot on the surface of the moon for the first time, he delivered a moment of human achievement that will never be forgotten.”

Rest In Peace, Neil…

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