Found June 24, 2013 on Taking Bad Schotz:
It’s been very difficult to be a Mets fan these past few years. Since their epic collapse in 2007, fans have witnessed over five years of injuries, disappointing signings, embarrassing losses (Luis Castillo, anyone?) and poor ownership. There have been bright spots, such as Dillon Gee’s 7-0 start and Jose Reyes’ batting title in 2011, and R.A. Dickey’s Cy Young Award last season, but the bad moments have definitely outweighed the good ones. The Mets have made it very easy for impatient fans to find a new team to root for. While general manager Sandy Alderson is telling the fans to remain patient, it is hard to take that message to heart when the team is in the midst of another losing season. However, this past Tuesday’s doubleheader against the Braves gave Mets fans a glimpse of what to expect in the future. The day started out with 23-year-old Matt Harvey taking the mound. Harvey was 5-1 heading into this matchup, but that is not indicative of how good Harvey has been this year. Harvey has assumed the role as the team’s ace, and the Mets’ mediocre offense has wasted numerous Harvey starts, preventing him from obtaining an even better record. However, the Mets’ offense did not let Harvey down, scoring four runs. While Harvey gave up three runs in the 8th inning, his brilliance through the first seven innings gave him a well-earned 4-3 win. Photo Credit: JULIO CORTEZ/AP Later on Tuesday was the highly anticipated debut of 23-year-old Zack Wheeler. Wheeler, who was acquired in exchange for Carlos Beltran, had been the Mets’ top pitching prospect since his acquisition (even ahead of Harvey). The Mets were 26-40 at the time of his debut, and Mets fans desperately wanted another bright spot to go along with Harvey. Wheeler definitely delivered. Wheeler pitched six scoreless innings, and notched his first of what should be many wins in a Mets uniform. While Wheeler had some command issues (five walks), but he struck out seven batters, and did a great job of getting out of jams. Harvey has proven many times this year that he will be the anchor for the Mets’ pitching staff for years to come. Now, Wheeler has proven that his hype was warranted, and that he will give the Mets another stud at the top of their pitching staff for many more years as well. After Wheeler’s start, manager Terry Collins said, “I hope people saw this. Certainly they’re going to enjoy watching these two guys for a long time. They’re going to be around.” Collins is referring to all of the fans that have stuck with the Mets, and he is telling them that something special is brewing in Flushing. Hopefully Mets fans saw Harvey improve to 7-1 on Sunday afternoon by shutting out the Phillies for six innings, and hopefully they check out Wheeler’s start against the White Sox on tonight. These two players are the future of the franchise, and if the Mets can just acquire one or two more good hitters, this team can be a contender very soon. -Hollenberg
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