Jered Weaver won again last night, shutting out the A’s for his league-leading 15th win of the season.
Weaver struck out nine, didn’t walk a batter and allowed only four hits. One of those guys was erased on a double play. In short: Weaver was dominant.
Weaver has won nine straight starts, and as a team the Angels have won his last 12 starts. His win total, his one loss on the season and his ERA (2.13) is the stuff of unanimous Cy Young Award votes.
Which, when you figure that, at present, Mike Trout is the easy favorite for Rookie of the Year and the likely favorite for AL MVP, the Angels are on pace to take home some serious hardware this postseason.
Not bad for a team that, if the season ended today, would find itself having to win a three-way tiebreaker for the last playoff slot.
It’s can’t be easy being a Mets fan. Your team plays in the biggest city in America and should, theoretically, have big payrolls and always be in contention. They aren’t, however, partially because of horrendous luck and ill-timed injuries, partially because of poor baseball decisions and partially because the team’s ownership got taken down by a Ponzi scheme that, one would think anyway, sophisticated businessmen would recognize as a Ponzi scheme. We’ll leave that go, though.
What Mets fans are left with are (a) occasional windows of contention, such as we saw in 2014-16; (b) times of frustrating austerity on the part of ownership when, one would hope anyway, some money would be spent; (c) an inordinate focus on tabloidy and scandalous nonsense which just always seems to surround the club; and (c) a lot of disappointment.
You can file this latest bit under any of or many of the above categories, but it is uniquely Mets.
Team president Jeff Wilpon spoke to the press this afternoon about team payroll. In talking about payroll, David Wright‘s salary was included despite the fact that he may never play again and despite the fact that insurance is picking up most of the tab. Wilpon’s comment:
I’m guessing every team has a line item, someplace, about the costs of insurance. They’re businesses after all, and all businesses have to deal with that. They do not talk about it as a barrier to spending more money on players to the press, however, as they likely know that fans want to be told a story of hope and baseball-driven decisions heading into a new season and do not want to hear about all of the reasons the club will not spend any money despite sitting in a huge market.
This doesn’t change a thing about what the Mets were going to do or not do, but it does have the added bonus of making Mets fans roll their eyes and ask themselves what they did to deserve these owners. And that, more than almost anything, is the essence of Mets fandom these days.