08.31.05

Heyman : Mets Fans “Abysmal”

Posted in Baseball at 9:52 am by

Newsday’s Jon Heyman bravely directs his sights towards those Mets fans who aren’t packing Shea Stadium…neglecting to mention, of course, how many major league ballgames he’s paid his own money to see recently.

This is a contending Mets team, one that has as good a chance as anyone of winning the National League wild card.

Ya Gotta Believe, no?

Maybe if the team makes the playoffs, it will sell out then.

Maybe not.

The only games that fill Shea Stadium lately are the ones that guarantee the merengue, the Latin appreciation nights. How about some plain ol’ baseball appreciation nights? Maybe the better business model is to 86 the baseball and salsa their way through September.

If something doesn’t change, the Mets’ September will be filled with meaningful yet rarely seen games.

They returned from a hugely successful 5-2 trip, after finally proving they can win away from Shea and put a nice streak together, to face the wild-card-leading Phillies and a too-empty house. I wonder which was more demoralizing, the unoccupied seats or the first-inning home runs by Phillies Kenny Lofton and Pat Burrell.

No matter, the Mets bounced back from both, erasing a 4-1 deficit to win, 6-4.

“I think they’re missing something if they don’t come. This is a very exciting team they should be proud to come see,” manager Willie Randolph said. “I don’t know who’s here and who isn’t, as long as there’s a few.”

The players’ performance was typically enthralling last night. The fans’ performance was abysmal. The announced crowd was 36,505. That’s 20,864 less than it should have been.

“The weather didn’t help us tonight. I would be more upset if the weather was perfect,” Mets COO Jeff Wilpon said. “The weather’s been threatening all day. There’s a hurricane out there.”

Wilpon was talking 15 minutes before game time, and Shea was mostly empty. There were a decent number of late arrivers. Yet, even after everyone filed in, the green mezzanine section was nearly half empty and the red upper-deck section was half empty.

This team isn’t a mirage. The fans need to stop treating it like one. This team deserves your attention, your patronage, your respect.

Sure, Mets fans are skeptical after enduring the Mo Vaughn Era, which partly coincided with the Art Howe Error. That’s understandable.

But 130 games have been played. It’s time, Mets fans.

It’s time to forget the past, to embrace the present, and to realize the Mets are worth your time.

Mike Cameron made it to the ballpark yesterday. If Cameron, who broke his face diving and colliding for a liner, can make it to Shea, you can make it, too.

George Will made it to the park, and he brought family members. Davey Johnson made it to the ballpark to promote the Viagra Comeback Player of the Year award. What, you were expecting Rafael Palmeiro?

Much as I appreciate Heyman’s acknowledging that the Mets are a legit contender, this is much ado about zilch. Mike Cameron, George Will and Davey Johnson have far nicer walk-up seating options than the average Mets fan. OK, maybe not Davey, but you get the idea. Heyman wonders why the Cyclones can sell out but not the Mets, yet the capacity and ambience of the respective ballparks answer that question for him, if not the ticket prices. And 36K on a Tuesday isn’t that embarasing. Were the Mets to sell that many tickets every game, their annual attendence would be just shy of 3 million. Not the rarified air of the Yankees, but a more than acceptable sum for a club that hasn’t won anything in 5 years.

9 Responses to “Heyman : Mets Fans “Abysmal””

  1. Harris Bloom says:

    Always hated it when columnists take fans to task for not showing up…sorry Jon, but maybe the prices, the ballplayers general apathy (at best) towards fans (not to mention the humidity) make me me wanna watch it at home, where I can cheer on my team and not line the pockets of greedy owners and players (though yes, I realize that a portion of my monthly cable bill pays for Barry Bond’s salary).

    I’m sure Phil Mushnick would have something to say about this in his next column (though I dunno if he raps about other newspapers)

  2. Chuck Meehan says:

    The Mets fans were a hell of a 10th man during the 7th and 8th innings last night.

  3. Harris Bloom says:

    Word

  4. Jesper says:

    last time I looked you could watch every game on TV and listen to every game on the radio as well (in English and Spanish). And the tickets I bought for tonight’s game were $80 a pop (how much is Heyman paying?) – not orange seats, not blue seats, but green mezzanine seats. Plus I was listening to last night’s game on MLB’s gameday audio while being 2,500 miles away from shea. But, I’m not doing my part?? FUCK YOU, HEYMAN.

  5. CSTB says:

    yeah yeah yeah, you’re just going tonight to dance to the sexy merengue music. $80 a pop? Not until you volunteer to give the Wilpon family the account number and sort code to your checking account will I believe that you are a real Mets fan.

    further criteria :

    a) have you ever keyed Doug Sisk’s car?
    b) ever pretended your sex partner was Mr. (or Mrs.) Met?
    c) is the body of Danny Heap in your attic or basement RIGHT THIS SECOND?

    unless you answered “yes” to all 3 questions, I am afraid that you are just another fair-weather, Pedro-loving, merengue disco-ing poser, unfit to read the pages of Long Island’s biggest daily newspaper.

  6. jamie says:

    once again, does anyone bother to fact check anything? the Mets are on pace to have their highest attendance since 1989 and the 4th highest total in franchise history – higher than 1986, 1969, 1973 and 2000. attendance is up 21% on last year, and last night they passed last year’s total with 15 home games still to go.

    here’s the links to back it up in case anyone cares:

    http://www.baseball-almanac.com/teams/metsattn.shtml
    http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/attendance

  7. jamie says:

    the Mets attendance:

    * is up 21% over last year and last night surpassed last year’s total with 15 games still remaining
    * is on pace to be their highest since 1989 and the 4th best year in franchise history, surpassing 1986, 2000, 1973 and 1969
    * is 7th in the major leagues this year

    so i guess we can cast Heyman into the journalistic ghetto flophouse populated by those who can’t be bothered by any facts or who just make shit up to suit their needs. bring some earplugs Jon – i hear Bayless stays up late blaring his 8-tracks and dancing in front of the mirror.

  8. DirtMcGirt says:

    FRIDAY 9/20/1996 Yanks vs. Red Sox drew 39,883… wonder if Heyman wrote a story about that? Wonder if Heyman considered the US open going on next door and the logistical nightmare it is getting to Shea for those two weeks every year? Just sayin…

  9. jamie says:

    sorry for the redundancy – i thought my first attempt had been lost to the land of wind and ghosts.

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