By now, most of Mets’ Nation is aware that an incident took place last weekend involving the players and the media. The players rallied behind Bartolo Colon and declined to speak to the media until after Mike Puma of the New York Post departed.
The issue was that Puma had written, “if Colon’s neck were inspected by an umpire, the only foreign substance they would likely find would be peanut butter”. Of course, the article’s headline, “Lardball” also added to the animosity.
Once Puma left, the players began to emerge from the clubhouse and converse with the media.
Now this, of course, should be taken as a sign that the team is developing its camaraderie and it should not go unnoticed that Colon is expected to be a veteran presence for not only the rest of this year but next year as well. It is worth noting that in this case, the story is what a reporter did to a New York Met and not what a New York Met did to a reporter. Those of us who remember the Bret Saberhagen and Vince Coleman incidents know what I am referring to.
I will be the first one to admit, that in the game Colon pitched against the Los Angeles Angels on April 13th, I was dumbfounded to see him appear so nonchalant after giving up consecutive HRs to Mike Trout, Albert Pujols, and Raul Ibanez. At the time, it was excruciating for me to witness that. Of course, the Mets got pummeled and lost the game 14-2. After that game, Colon’s record stood at 1-2 and he had an ERA of 6.00. But since then and despite losing his next start against the Atlanta Braves, he has pitched solidly, striking out 14 batters while walking only one batter. His ERA now stands at 4.50. That casual demeanor, though, is part of his game.
So, in short, Colon has found supporters in the clubhouse and that is a good sign. The team is developing a fighting spirit and if that includes taking the fight off the field; well, sometimes that is a good thing.