*Let me preface this by letting everyone who didn’t already know that I am a Mets fan.
I had tickets to tonight’s game at Shea Stadium between the Mets and the Reds. The weather in New York City has been rainy, windy and basically hideous since early this morning; for much of the day, there was a debate between myself and my fiancee as to what our course of action would be if the Mets actually tried to play tonight’s game. Repeated glances out the window and our experiences when we ran several errands today led us to the conclusion that there was no logical way the Mets would even consider playing this game tonight.
It is my understanding that the decision as to whether or not to attempt to start the game lies in the hands of the home team until the lineup cards are exchanged at home plate; at that point, the game belongs to the umpiring crew. (Any reader can correct me if I’m wrong.) The weather predicated that the game should have been canceled by 4:00 at the earliest and 5:00 at the latest. I continually called the “RAIN” number on the back of the ticket to listen to the same recorded message again and again telling me that tonight’s game between the Mets and the Reds was scheduled to be played at 7:10 PM. It then suggested that I listen to 66 WFAN in New York for continuous updates regarding the game. I did so, still wondering how they were even considering starting a game like this when every weather report was suggesting that the rain was going to continue (along with strong winds and cold air) until past midnight.
On The Mike and the Mad Dog radio show, hosts Mike Francesa and Christopher Russo reacted with thinly disguised incredulity that the Mets were going forward with the farce of trying to play the game given the circumstances. Francesa postulated (correctly in my view) that the Mets didn’t want to have to play a split doubleheader; lose the gate for tonight’s game and risk a diminished number of fans attending the first or second half of said doubleheader. (I even tried to call WFAN to ask them if they had any idea as to what the Mets were planning; when there was no busy signal, the phone rang, rang and rang some more, leading me to wonder where the interns were; aren’t they there to answer the phones?) The Mets self-centered greed in this situation made me embarrassed to be a fan of the team.
Where is the fan-friendliness that is supposed to be present? Where is the concern? Was it necessary to even make it a consideration for people who had paid for their tickets to drive or take mass transit all the way out to Shea Stadium to sit in the rain for several hours despite the absurdity of the idea given the weather situation? I like to think I’m a bright enough guy and my fiancee is extremely smart, but we were sitting here considering whether or not to take the drive on the rain-soaked Gowanus Expressway, along the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway, over the Kocziusko Bridge and to Shea Stadium to pay for parking to receive the privilege of sitting with the other Mets fans who wanted to watch their team play, hear that first pitch was scheduled for 8:30 PM, then suddenly be told that the game was postponed and tickets would be honored for the second game of a split doubleheader scheduled for Saturday night. It was a decision that I did not take lightly when we chose not to go.
Never mind the money that would have been spent for the ride, parking and whatever ridiculously overpriced food items a fan would have purchased (without a refund or even a “thanks for coming”); it was literally dangerous to be out on the road tonight with the weather as inclement as it’s been. Do they even think of their fans in a situation such as this? There was the very real possibility that I would have to kiss the money I spent on the tickets to see my team go flying out the window, completely wasted, because the Mets were so adamant of playing tonight’s game regardless of the forecast or ancillary occurrences that may happen due to the resistance to doing what was right and canceling the game at a decent time so people wouldn’t have been put in that position. Other teams would have given rain checks to fans that didn’t come to the game even if the game was played; it saddens me to wonder whether the Mets would have done a similar thing for their fans, but given the disgusting display of selfishness in forcing some fans to come to the park when the front office had to know that getting the game in was exceedingly unlikely is selfish, corporate greed at its worst. It’s offensive that they even went to such lengths for one game over the comfort and safety of their fans; but they did and the entire Mets organization should be ashamed.