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On Being A Fair Weather Fan Of The New York Mets

Writing about the Mets is not an easy task, and yet, as a hobby that’s what I do. As a Fair Weather fan of the team (yes I confess to that), often it’s challenging to bang the drum on a positive note. And when readers figure out that I’m a Yankees fan, all hell can break loose.

I confess to being a fair weather fan of the New York Mets. I feel as though I have no other choice given the dysfunctional nature of the organization. And so, I get bashed a bit on a host of Mets Facebook Groups where I often post.

But it all stems from Mets fans being a unique brand that is not found anywhere else in baseball. Mets fans, the real ones that follow the Mets in Facebook Groups like The 7 Line Army are rabid, devout, and most of all, unforgiving. Others, like Truthful Mets Fans, fall more in line with my thoughts on the Mets, and comments reflect that.

But it all stems from the fact I am a fair weather fan of the Mets and a rabid, undying fan of the Yankees. Readers who are familiar with Reflections On Baseball know that I’ve been a Yankees fan since the days before the Mets were even born.

My writing reflects that, how could it not? And if columns about the Yankees indicate a glass-half-full, while those about the Mets see the glass-half-empty, where can the mystery be in that? But that shouldn’t mean I can’t like the Mets and root for them as well.

Derek Thompson explains this much better than I can in a compelling article he wrote for The Atlantic, in which he explains why “It Is Okay To Be A Fair Weather Fan” of a team or even teams.

“But I’m done apologizing. In fact, I’m pretty sure that I’m right and everybody else is wrong. Rooting for winners is more than acceptable—it’s commendable. Fans shouldn’t put up with awfully managed teams for decades just because their parents liked those teams as if sports were governed by the same rules and customs as medieval inheritance. Fans should feel free to shop for teams the way they do for any other product. What I’m proposing here is a theory of fluid fandom that would encourage, as opposed to stigmatize, promiscuous sports allegiances. By permanently anchoring themselves to teams from their hometown or even an adopted town, sports fans consign themselves to needless misery. They also distort the marketplace by sending a signal to team owners that winning is orthogonal to fans’ long-term interests. Fluid fandom, I submit, is the emotionally, civically, and maybe even morally superior way to consume sports.” Derek Thompson, The Atlantic

Being a fair-weather fan of a team is not the same as hopping on the bandwagon when a team suddenly begins to win. The former means you start out as a fan of the team, but you wait for them to “do something” to gain your attention, and only then do you become a rabid fan of the team.

I’m still waiting for the Mets to “Do Something.” Some feel the same way; others don’t. Here’s a comment that appeared on Facebook Group NY Mets:

Louis Marrero “ If they trade Degrom or Noah and get nothing back the Wilpons officially need to sell the gotdam team the fan base is absolutely sick of there nickel and dime shit” (Not edited)

And then, from another group, Mets Country, you get this on a post dealing with the Mets “listening to calls” on Jacob deGrom and Noah Syndergaard  (also not edited):

Bob Scott “We’re all dumber for having read this. I award you no points and may god have mercy on your soul”
Herbert Greenebaum “These are ramblings as opposed to educated opinions. If you think if yourself as a baseball expert, you have a minority opinion”.

These conversations are the heart and soul of a baseball season. They drum up passion and thinking. And more than anything, they keep me honest as an (amateur) writer. The search of any writer should be to find the truth. The only problem is that truth can take many forms. And perhaps, that’s why Stephen Colbert invented a new word called “truthiness” to define the indefinable.

Mets Fans
Mets Fans Photo Credit: Newsday

“Ya Gotta Believe,” yes. But to my way of thinking that doesn’t mean a Mets fan needs to bow down at the altar saying the rosary three times praying for something good to happen with this team. Pardon me, but the Yankees do good things and win because they have an exceptional organization from the very top with ownership, the 25 players assembled in the clubhouse, and right on down to the lowest levels of their minor league system.

I want the Mets to get there too, and I lament the fact this Subway Series is a mere shell of previous ones between these intra-city rivals. Hope in the face of reality is not the answer for the Mets. The Wilpons are not selling the team, but there are tons of other ways to improve this team, beginning right now.

On what calendar date will we start to see some answers from Sandy Alderson? And by the way, I like what the Milwaukee Brewers are doing this season, and I’m a fair weather fan of that team too…

For more on the Mets, visit my Home Page

Reflections On Baseball

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2 comments

  1. It seems Derek Thompson has never actually been a real fan of any team. Otherwise, he would understand that there is nothing logical about why we root for any particular team. Of course you could pick any successful team to root for, easy.
    However, the essence of fandom is that connection you have, whether it’s familial, or a connection nurtured over a lifetime. What Derek is talking about is worshipping success, not being a fan!

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