It was less than a week ago.
In fact, it was last Thursday to be exact, the last time Mets fans felt good.
That was the night Johan Santana worked his magic weaving in and out of jams while Nick Evans provided the punch via a two-run double for a 3-2 win over the Cards.
It was a statement game because it seemed to answer a fundamental question that had been in the minds of ravenous fans, media elites, and probably in the teams own clubhouse: Could the Mets weather the storm?
It's an old story as the midpoint of 2009 comes into focus, but injuries had become crippling and they had just managed to best the NL Central leading St. Louis Cardinals for the third time in four tries.
Just a game and a half stood between them and their arch rivals, the Philadelphia Phillies, who'd been in the middle of a horrific tailspin themselves.
However, that was the last win the Mets have recorded. Amazing how fast the wheels can fly off. In less than a week, the Mets managed to lose five games in a row—three to the cross-town adversaries, the Yankees.
The quick tailspin has fans asking, pleading, and begging Omar Minaya for a move, any move, to salvage whatever can be saved.
Mark Derosa was had by the Cardinals or Chris Perez. Eric Hinske is property of the Yankees for two class A players, outfielder Eric Fryer and pitcher Casey Erickson. Nyjer Morgan is now a National for the price of Lastings Milledge and Joel Hanrahan.
All these moves have proved one thing: Omar Minaya's hands are tied. The only moves he can truly make without mortgaging the future is none.
In the talks for Derosa, the Indians wanted Bobby Parnell. All trade talks will center around Parnell, Daniel Murphy, and Fernando Martinez. Teams know the Mets are desperate and it's the king's ransom as the asking price.
The truth is Adam Dunn is not on the way. Probably not Nick Johnson either. Besides the Mets have much more problems than the lack of bodies and bat speed to contend with.
Defense has been a problem since the very beginning of the year. Whether it was Daniel Murphy's miscues in left or Luis Castillo's dropped pop up, the Mets are making plays reserved for little league (anyone see the fourth inning of the Milwaukee game tonight?).
K-Rod has been more than advertised but the rest of the pen has been shoddy, especially since the departure of J.J. Putz. And the rotation has been beat up and suspect after Santana.
Santana himself went from lights out to lit up as he is now 9-6 with an ERA that has climbed to a respectable 3.34 but far from the early season form where he'd been superhuman.
Jerry Manuel has been mixing and matching lineups looking for the winning formula but at times has made questionable decisions with regard to Ryan Church and Daniel Murphy who have sat at points when they were hot.
So this is it for now. Maybe as the season goes on and players begin to filter in the Mets will be able to stand with the rest of the division again. After all, It was only a week ago that the Mets looked poised to pick up ground on the Phillies.
We'll just have to wait and see.