Excuse me if I feel a bit edgy today. It’s just that I’m gearing myself up for six months or so of swift kicks to the groin, crushing blindside tackles, two-by-fours to the back of the head, sand in my eyes, ground glass in my cereal, salt water up my nose, and other forms of torture and abuse that my imagination will likely conjure up by early August.
Yes, it’s Opening Day for the Mets. And I won’t be anybody’s April Fool, so I am tossing aside any semblance of optimism and preparing for the worst in 2013. As my expectations have sunk lower than Nicki Minaj’s neckline, I will only kvetch so much about a 65-70 win season, which is what we’re in for. Even if the Mets get off to a fast start, and Matt Harvey and Jon Niese are killing it, and Bobby Parnell is lights out, and Colin Cowgill eats up real estate in center field (which is a good thing, in baseball terms), and David Wright and Daniel Murphy are free of their intercostal pains (not to be mistaken with intercoastal pains, which I guess is something you get from a really bad West Coast road trip), and Frank Francisco stays on the DL (a plus), and Terry Collins remains wide-eyed and smiling, and Ike Davis keeps his average above the Mendoza Line while hitting the crap out of the matzoh ball, and Travis D’Arnaud and Zack Wheeler dominate in AAA on their way to June call-ups, and Dillon Gee pitches like a three and not a six, and Marlon Byrd plays like the player we thought he was going to be with the Phillies, and Lucas Duda makes Citi Field his personal sandbox despite striking out every other at bat, and the Nationals and Braves, with all their justified hype, get off to slow starts, and the Phillies look older than ever . . .
Despite all that, I’ll still see a dark cloud hanging over this season, thunder and lightning and hail and frogs and locusts ready to rain down from the heavens and bury this season in a torrent of Biblical plagues — bear with me, it’s the last day of Passover. I know, I sound overly dramatic, but this is what the last seven years — not mention a majority of the last 44 seasons that I’ve been intravenously hooked up to this team — has done to me. Worn, beaten down, frustrated, wasted, depressed. . .
And still loving it. Play ball! Let’s Go Mets!