In a year where we saw ‘Prevention and Recovery,' hirings and firings, and even some crazy top 10 plays, our New York Mets couldn’t put together a winning ball club and now our eyes are set on the promising future.
With a new regime in place that stands for almost everything opposite from the last boss, we take one last look at 2010 with the knowledge that our team will improve in 2011 and years to come.
The cleansed feeling that comes with Opening Day was on full blast at Citi Field in April of 2010. Witnessing the past few seasons of .500 baseball and September collapses, Mets fans always look forward to the day our team can start fresh, and this season was no different.
Making this year even more special, the Mets decided to recognize the greatest moments in club history and the greatest players by adding the Hall of Fame and Museum to the Citi Field concourse.
I’ve been there and it is awesome. It was like stepping into a time machine and reliving the unforgettable plays and players that define the New York Mets' 48-year history.
Channeling his inner Kirk Gibson, fill-in second baseman Luis Hernandez took a tortuous 33.08 seconds to round the bases after hitting a home run in the September 18th game against the Atlanta Braves.
Fouling the previous pitch of his foot, which ultimately broke a bone and ended his season, Hernandez’s swing didn’t seem to suffer when he took the next pitch over the Citi Field wall for his second homer of the season.
Marking the first time in major league history two starters made their debut in the same game, Dillon Gee took the mound against Yunesky Maya and the Washington Nationals.
Gee pitched brilliantly in his first career start, giving up one run on two hits with four strikeouts and taking a no-hitter into the sixth inning.
Notching his first career win and few solid starts as the season closed out, we now hope Gee can translate his talents to a full season in the big leagues in 2011.
May 19th proved to be a sign of good things to come for Mets fans and the new fan favorite, R.A. Dickey.
In his debut for the Mets, Dickey went 6 strong innings, giving up only two runs on five hits and left with the lead, but ultimately got the no decision that night.
Using the combination of his nasty knuckler and his repertoire of pitches from his traditional pitching days, Dickey proved to be a shining spot on the 2010 Mets, and hopefully he can relive some of that magic this coming season.
After a deflating 4-2 loss in game one of the June 10th double-header against the San Diego Padres, rookie pitcher Jonathon Niese took the mound for the night cap and delivered a phenomenal nine inning performance.
Dominating the then first place Padres to a one-hit 3-0 shutout win, Niese helped the Mets finish the home stand 5-1, which also started an eight game winning streak entering interleague play.
With an obvious lack of run support for their ace all season long, Johan Santana took it upon himself to get the Mets in the win column with his first career home run and also throwing a three hit shutout against the Cincinnati Reds at Citi Field on July sixth.
“I started running and I didn’t believe it was out, but when I saw the ball and everybody cheering, it was a great feeling. One of the best,” Santana said in a post-game press conference. “I only hit them in video games. We have to go back to, I don’t even know, a long time, maybe as an amateur player, but never as a professional.”
Any fan that tuned into the Mets vs. Cardinals game on April 17th was definably not expecting what we witnessed.
It took Jose Reyes 20 innings to finally do something at the plate, but his tie-breaking sacrifice fly was all the Mets needed to beat the Cardinals 2-1 in a game that saw 19 different pitchers and lasted about 6 hours and 53 minutes.
It was the longest MLB game since the Rockies beat the Padres 2-1 in 22 innings on April 17, 2008, and also saw the Big Pelf notch his first career save.
Overall, a moral booster and a huge win for the Mets.
April 19, 2010, was a great day that showed Mets fans that there is some hope for the future. Top prospect Ike Davis finally made his Major League debut and went a solid 2-4 at the plate with an RBI.
It was an exciting moment not just for the fans, but also for the team that was going through a tough stretch to open the season, and Ike’s presence brought a sense of excitement and enthusiasm back in the dugout.
We saw this excitement on the field with many top 10 plays from Davis including a couple over the railing catches, and we can only expect Ike to get better from here on out.
According to the Huffington Post, on May 18th we witnessed something that hasn’t happened in 55 years: One player hitting an inside-the-park homer while also starting a triple play in the same game.
That player was Angel Pagan and that game deserves to be on any list of great plays.
To do one is a nice accomplishment for any ball player, but to do both in the same game is a feat any fan can admire.
It was tough to narrow down the No.1 moment from the New York Mets 2010 season, but as I was going through the list, this is the only moment that is No.1 in my mind: The firing of GM Omar Minaya and manager Jerry Manuel.
I hate to focus on the negative of this ball club, but in my opinion, these two men were the epitome of the rough years our favorite franchise faced. They brought in free agents on large contracts that were total busts, and also managed in a way to get on the bad side of some players.
Overall, I feel the organization finally realized its mistakes were at the top and addressed the issue properly. Now with the new regime in place, we all hope that next year’s run down of the top plays will include many more winning ball games, and I think I can speak for many Mets fans out there when I say I’m more excited for the next couple years of baseball than I have ever been.