Hello my Mets faithful! Right about now it’s the middle of winter and we’re knee deep in NFL playoff football, NBA basketball, and the NHL FINALLY returns next weekend! Of course, many of us are also counting down the days until spring training begins.
That wonderful time of year when we all have renewed faith in our teams, eager to see what new talent is up and coming, and what possible new tricks the veterans can pull out of their hats. One particular veteran most of us are ecstatic to see back (and for quite a long time too) is our own David Wright.
Signed this off-season to long-term contract that should keep him a Met for life, our homegrown hero is here to stay. As for our second hero, the wonderful feel-good story of a man who fought to bring the Mets (and we fans) a National League Cy Young award against all odds this past season…
I know, I know…weeks have gone by now since Dickey was traded to the Toronto Blue Jays, with his personal catcher and a spare accompanying him. But I can’t help still feeling sad over the whole thing and the way it was handled. Before all of you who were on the “trade Dickey” side jump all over me, let me explain.
We all know how hard it is to be a Mets fan. That’s one thing we all have in common. We have so few moments to REALLY pull together and cheer for, something that really uplifts us and makes us proud of our team again.
This past year, we finally got that, in the form of one R.A. Dickey. A man who pretty much pulled himself up from the depths of past demons both on and off the field, to stand tall and strong and humble…and against all odds won a Cy Young…with a knuckleball.
There’s no crying in baseball, right? Wrong. I can remember tears streaming down my face watching him as he finally got his 20th win, and stood there and thanked US. We, the fans…someone thanked US! He said we gave him the support and the fire he needed to get through it…and we loved him for it.
Flash forward to today…Dickey is no longer a member of the Mets. He was unceremoniously pushed out of town after bringing something to this franchise that hasn’t been seen since the days of Mike Piazza…a true hero.
Yes, David Wright is the beloved face of the Mets, but R.A. Dickey was a hero (to me, anyway). He survived a horrible childhood, reinvented himself when he was told he’d never amount to much in the baseball world, he wrote a book, climbed a mountain…and thanked everyone else. He is humble, gracious…someone you really want to root for.
And he’s gone…just like that.
Yes, I realize baseball is a business, and I’ve had countless discussions with my BFF about it as he tried to convince me over and over how Sandy has to do things like this in order to make the team better.
I understood what he was telling me, but I still didn’t want to face the fact that our hero had been traded away in the blink of an eye (and with so little respect after what he had done). I suppose many of you will say “well, you’re a chick, you get emotionally attached to players”. No, I get emotionally attached to players who make your heart swell and bring tears to your eyes with their accomplishments and their character.
So yes, while it is necessary to make moves like these in order to improve a team’s future, it’s OK to be sad at the same time. I will still cheer on our Mets as they move forward, but I will also never forget the knuckleballer who loved Star Wars and Lord of the Rings, quietly went about his business, gave us hope, gave us chills, gave us a Cy Young, and most of all…gave us his thanks for riding it all with him.