No More Happy Recaps: Shea Stadium's Sad Goodbye

Ryne E. HancockCorrespondent ISeptember 29, 2008

When people think of stadium farewells, they mainly think of happy farewells to the stadium of their youth.

They mainly watch as old greats from their youth return to say farewell to their beloved ballpark and then as the lights dim, prepare for their future ballpark rising out the ground across the parking lot.

But on Sunday afternoon in New York, a full week after the Yankees said goodbye to the House That Ruth Built, the unwanted stepchild stadium in Queens, Shea Stadium, said goodbye in the worst possible way.

For the second straight season, the Mets were eliminated by the same team, the young and brash Florida Marlins, who I'm sure going to be the answer to a trivia question 30 years from now the same way that the answer to who hit the last homer in Shea.

By the way, the answer to that question was Dan Uggla, former University of Memphis standout.

It's safe to say that this latest collapse from the Mets was doomed to happen, ever since Yader Molina on an autumn night two years ago hit a home run to send my beloved Cardinals to the World Series and Carlos Beltran, who has been known to be a Cardinals killer in the past, stood motionless as the Cardinals celebrated on the mound at Shea.

The Mets figured that their problem was going to be fixed when Willie Randolph, former Yankee second baseman and Brooklyn guy, got canned in the middle of the night for former White Sox manager Jerry Manuel.

But while Manuel did an outstanding job managing this team, the fault in the last season at Shea Stadium lies on the bullpen, which gave up back-to-back homers Sunday and couldn't even hold their own water during the final weeks of the season.

And while Milwaukee, which also fired a manager in Ned Yost, continued to fight and claw for their first shot at the postseason in 26 years, the Mets provided very little happy recaps from the confines at Shea.

And again, for the second year in a row, the Mets are sitting at home sadder than a hot girl without a date on a Saturday night.