After Johan Santana no-hit the defending champion St. Louis Cardinals on June 1, the New York Mets -- reveling in the first such pitching performance in the franchise's long, agonizing history -- sat at 29-23 on the season.
It was, for the first time in a long time, a good time to be them.
The 29 wins represented the team's highest win total at that point in a season since 2007, and New York found itself just one game behind Washington for the NL East lead at the time. By the start of July, the Mets were still hanging in there, just 2.5 games behind the Nationals at 43-36 and still in line for a wild card spot.
Still so far, so good.
But something has happened in the Big Apple since June gave way to July that can only be explained with the type of generalities that have become all too familiar to the team's fervent and increasingly unimpressed fan base: The Mets did what you knew the Mets would do.
They've made the least of a tailor-made opportunity, with the Phillies surprisin...