Originally written August 21, 2012 on MetsZilla:
Let’s face it, New York Mets baseball is becoming less and less of a priority for fans as the team falls from relevancy.  They can’t hit, the bullpen is infuriating, and all we continue to hear from the front office is that spending will be limited moving forward.  Maybe ownership is handcuffed by two of the worst contracts in all of baseball for 2013 (Jason Bay – $16 million + $3 million 2014 buyout, Johan Santana due $25.5 million + $5.5 million 2014 buyout), but regardless, their hard stance against spending in recent years does little to instill faith in an already jaded fan base that has staunchly supported a mediocre team (to put it kindly). Photo by Michael G. Baron So as the struggles continue for the Mets (losers of 5 out of the last 8 and 11 of the last 16) most fans are left with little reason to clear time in their schedule and watch a game or take money out of their wallets and go to the ballpark.  That’s understandable, it doesn’t make a fan less of a ‘die-hard’ and it’s not like the Mets brass is jumping ship and starting to pull for the Braves.  Baseball provides us with entertainment and when the team we root for is no longer entertaining, well then it’s reasonable to expect us to shift our attention elsewhere. If ownership wants to lay out a plan that points to a ‘consistent’ quality product come 2014, well then guess what, I’ll see ya at the ballpark when those games kick off.  In the meantime, I’ll pick and choose my spots because I’m simply not a glutton for punishment.  Taking time to relax and watch a game or go the ballpark is an indulgence, much like going out to eat a nice restaurant.  When the food is good and the owners continually do their best to bring in high quality items, nobody minds paying up for a good meal.  But when you see the quality of your food go down and owners who are doing little to fix the problem, you go eat elsewhere or find another way to enjoy your night out. Photo by Michael G. Baron For me, I’m sorry to say it but R.A. Dickey, Jonathon Niese, and Matt Harvey are the specials on an otherwise less than appetizing menu.  When those three pitchers take the mound I’m making my reservation to watch a game.  Beyond that, I find it hard to come up with a good reason to watch an offense that has scored the third fewest runs in all of baseball since the All-Star break (ahead of only Cleveland and Houston) anchored by a pitching staff that boasts the third worst ERA in the NL during that time span.  David Wright is great and while Ruben Tejada, Daniel Murphy, and Ike Davis have had their moments and proven to be ‘nice’ players, the offense as a whole doesn’t exactly make for ‘must see television’. Photo by Michael G. Baron The New York Mets will always be my favorite baseball team, win or lose, but with poor performance in a big market comes low attendance, social media tirades, and general apathy.  Fans don’t seem to be making Mets baseball a priority, myself included, and it’s up to the front office to change that.  I hope the first step in doing just that is to sign R.A. Dickey and David Wright to extensions this offseason, but at this point, I’m just not confident ownership is willing to commit to a high quality menu.
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