An MMO Fan Shot by by Laura (mookie4ever)
I’ve always been fascinated with the science fiction concept of time travel, and its potential effect on the present if you went back in time and changed anything. Being a Trekkie as an idealistic kid, the Star Trek episodes that included time travel caught my attention the most. One in particular, was “City on the Edge of Forever,” where Dr. McCoy went back in time to 1930s New York and somehow made the Star Trek crew’s future disappear, along with their ship. Kirk and Spock had to go back in time after him, figure out what he did and prevent or undo it, so the future would remain the same. But how to find him? With his currents in time theory, Spock proposed that time was fluid, it ebbed and flowed in rivers and eddies, and would eventually bring them all together to a focal point in time.
I’ve pondered this stuff from time to time, impossible questions, such as if JFK had lived, would the Vietnam War have still dragged on and on? How would the 60s and 70s have turned out? Would we still have landed on the moon without his words from the grave to spur us on?
And, similarly, now I ask myself: What if the Mets’ chances for a World Series championship this year would be better served by a more natural progression to success? Something more like 1985 into 1986 instead of the quantum leap of 2015 so far ahead of schedule. If they had just missed the playoffs, or lost to the Dodgers, would we be willing to trade that NLCS and World Series appearance if it guaranteed dominance and a ring in 2016? Think of how much more frustrated and hungry and motivated they’d be this year.
Remember how much of a chip on their shoulder the 1986 team came into that season with and how dominant it was all year long. Couldn’t have been a coincidence that they missed the postseason by just 3 games behind the Cards. And then they came out roaring, not quite out of the gate, but shortly afterwards, in 1986 and never looked back, running all over the league for 108 wins. Total dominance, championship ring, a team for the ages. A Mets team we didn’t even recognize, they were so damn good and arrogant and nasty and dare I say, Yankee-like? Still many fans’ favorite team, bless their bullying, partying souls.
Would we trade the wonderful surprise and fairy tale games of the 2015 postseason, I wonder? Would we trade the amazing home run tear of Daniel Murphy, the guy most unlikely to set a major league power record, the still-unbelievable sweep of the Cubs, the Syndergaard message pitch and challenge, the oh-so-close-to-perfect Game 5 story of Matt Harvey and heartbreak?
I don’t know, it’s a tough call. If they hadn’t won that game 5 in LA, we would have all known that it was only the beginning for this team, and marveled at how far they had come in a year. Wouldn’t we? We’d have gathered up our feel-good stories and memories of the year and said, next year they’re making it all the way. Disappointed, but feeling so proud of our Metsies and the great strides they took. Right?
But if it had gone that way, maybe other things would have been very different this year. Without the cold ending to his postseason and poor WS, Cespedes might have gotten his $100 million contract elsewhere. Perhaps if Murph didn’t complete his major league record home run tear, he wouldn’t have looked for an expensive long-term contract and maybe taken a year or two here until Dilson was ready. (Think I’m reaching here for sentimental reasons—Mets were done with him.) Would David Wright still find the strength to keep up his iron man routine to fight through his spinal stenosis without that “most fun I’ve ever had in baseball” experience? Or would he be even more driven this year, not be patient enough to rest himself and land on the DL again? Such a lot of questions. This currents in time stuff is mentally exhausting.
The point is, nothing is a lock solid guarantee in baseball. Even that revered 1986 team, as totally dominant as they were, still needed harrowingly close come-from-behind miracle wins in two overtime game 6’s, and, according to Ronnie, a beer chaser, to seal the deal. It could have just as easily gone south for even them. So what’s to say this year’s Mets, even if they were pure and uncontaminated with a WS loss, could muster the will to go all the way, either?
Baseball schedules are meant to be wrecked, and the 2015 Mets so totally and irreparably destroyed Sandy’s carefully planned road to contention, that maybe it is just meant to be. Maybe those currents in time will swirl into the focal point of a 2016 Mets World Series Championship after all. Maybe these Mets are a team on the edge of forever. In any case, I’m not sure I would trade all that excitement, all those late nights, all those boys turning into men right before our eyes, or all that wonder in David Wright’s voice, for a more solid shot at a ring this year. I think it will be much more fun if it goes that way anyway, because, even with the zigzag path to greatness, I am convinced that we will witness greatness this year. It has already begun.
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This MMO Fan Shot was written by MMO reader Laura (Mookie4ever). Have something you want to say about the Mets? Share your opinions with over 30,000 Met fans who read this site daily. Send your Fan Shot to FanShot@MetsmerizedOnline.com. Or ask us about becoming a regular contributor.