Losing Is A Disease

“Losing is a disease.
…as contagious as polio.

 Losing is a disease.
…as contagious as syphilis.

 Losing is a disease.
…as contagious as bubonic plague.

 Attacking one.
… but infecting all.

 But curable.”

This is some dialogue that I’m sure most of you are familiar with.  It is taken from the movie “The Natural,” one of the best baseball-related movies ever made. In this scene, the New York Knights are having a sports psychologist speak to the team regarding a collective slump that the team is mired in.  The speech that the quack is giving them is monotonous and disinterested. Like the lectures we would receive in high school that would put us to sleep for a full period.

Unfortunately, this is a lesson the Mets should not be sleeping through. The Mets’ backs are against the wall. Slip any further in the standings and there will be no coming back this season.

It seems as though this team needs a testosterone boost to push them forward and to take the win. It appears as though they are almost comfortable with accepting the loss. Opportunities present themselves and the Mets watch them pass by.

In the movie, Roy Hobbs refuses to listen anymore to the lines of the sports psychologist. What he did was to put the team back on his shoulders and carry the Knights to the pennant.

This team could use a Roy Hobbs (or two or three). The Mets need someone to step up and capitalize on opportunities. Do the Mets have anyone with Hobbs-potential? Can David Wright carry this team? Sheffield? Reyes upon his return?

As awesome as Johan and Frankie are, they don’t put runs on the board. This team needs to manufacture runs better. Yesterday, on WFAN, Jerry Manuel reported that the New York Mets have the highest batting average with runners in scoring position, but they persistently fail to get those runs in.

The New York Mets have the 6th best team batting average in the majors, but are 20th in runs scored (5 runs behind the Washington Nationals. Yes, those Nationals).

What is it going to take to put this team in a better position to score and win games? It’s evident that this team knows how to get on base. Unfortunately, they like to stay there for some reason.

I understand that the team is not looking to spend a tremendous amount of money right now, considering how much they have invested in their current team (and medical bills).  Also, considering the hit the financial hit that the Wilpons took in the Madoff scandal, we can understand some more conservative decisions. We as fans, though, did not lose $700,000,000. We want a winning team.

Who in baseball have that Hobbs-quality? The ability to step up to the plate and get the job done, get the runs in. A few come to mind.

Josh Hamilton (for his amazing story and comeback in the 2008 season and absolutely historic display at the 2008 Home Run Derby).

Manny Ramirez (despite PEDs, the guy just flat out hits).

Albert Pujols (arguably one of the best hitters ever).

Ryan Howard (fastest to 200 HRs, and is always a threat in the clutch).

Who would you like to see?  Who can cure the Mets losing disease?