Friday, April 28, 2006

All the elements of foreshadowing.....

...are in place for the beginning of tonight's last three days of April in Atlanta. The numerous comparisons to the 1986 Mets are understandable in an anniversary year that's being celebrated and in this writer's points of reference. With hopes and expectations high, both teams had its own kryptonite in an adversary. For the Mets of 1986, they needed to prove they could both beat and dominate the Cardinals after the bitter 1985 campaign. For these Mets its much more painful, with an almost decade of futility behind them.
My friend, Adam Rubin runs the numbers today in his column in the NY Daily News.. A bitter pill loss to the Braves in six games in the 1999 playoffs and a good run to the World Series in 2000 for a loss to the Yankees never has filled the void. The Mets have been a franchise of immeasurable uniqueness with its two championships so endlessly romanticized. Seemingly, this current team, like the 1986 bunch, needs to exorcise its demons.
A wounded and mediocre Braves team arrived at Shea Stadium last week, but left with 2 of three games. Not again. And with the Mets not winning a series in Atlanta since 1997, the numbers aren't, well, encouraging. In 1986, the Cardinals beat the Mets in a bad opening day loss. But the two days of rain which followed somehow soothed and healed before winning five straight and moving on to St. Louis to sweep 4 in dominant form. For these Mets, maybe its a trip to California and a nice day off that will erase the very large monkey on their backs.
Even so, this team's demon is indeed the Braves. And beating them somehow seems a step that needs to be taken before they can move on.


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