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Game 141: Mets at Twins

On paper, the pitching matchup looks hard to beat... but we’ll see.

Toronto Blue Jays v. New York Mets
“Snitches get stitches.”
Photo by Mary DeCicco/MLB Photos via Getty Images

Time: 7:10 Central

Weather: Perfection, start temp 74°

Opponent’s SB site: Amazin' Avenue

TV: BSN. Radio: Is there anybody alive out there

MLB team record for strikeouts: 1596. Twins’ current pace: 1663

Kodai Senga is one of the few things going right for the 2023 Mets. The 30-year-old Nippon Professional League standout is in the first season of a 5-year, $75 mil contract, and looking like he'll be worth every penny. He throws a 96-ish fastball, a cutter, and a forkball changeup. His mound opponent, Dallas Keuchel, you know, and have not yet nicknamed "Living On Borrowed Time." Digits:

Since the Mets spent a lot of money to be mediocre, and their owner is a convicted inside trader (the Minnesota United's owner is a stock crook too), let’s instead look at one of sports' most famous mascots, Mr. Met.

He was created by a comic book artist in 1963 and used in promotional material that inaugural season; in 1964 he appeared as a costume character, played by one of the team's ticket vendors. He's probably the world's first costumed mascot. And is in the Mascot Hall of Fame in Whiting, IN.

The team retired him (and briefly used a live mule instead) in the 1970s, but brought him back by semi-popular demand in the 1990s. Supposedly, in 2003, when 1B Tony Clark used the number 00, he changed it because kids kept asking him what was wrong with Mr. Met.

And, in 2017, another bad Mets season, Mr. Met flipped off some fans.

According to bystanders, the fans in question "were cursing at Mr Met with the f-word and saying derogatory things about Mr Met’s mom," which sounds like a very Queens thing, but the Mets stopped using that particular mascot performer, anyways. (Other mascot performers agreed that fans can be infuriating.)

Quite an amusing defense of the incident came from this odd SB site, which basically supposes that Mr. Met has been losing his mind for decades. He's "the tragic figure of the mascot world, a desperate Willy Loman looking for purpose," and probably with a marriage to Mrs. Met in utter shambles.

And a YouTube search backs this up. He's ill at ease in the community, repeatedly abusive to team employees, and has entertained thoughts of self-harm (which a huge head makes difficult).

Nevertheless, he is keeping up appearances. In fact, you can hire the troubled couple for appearances at "birthdays, christenings, weddings" and much more. Although it’s hard for me to imagine an appropriate role for silent mascot performers at christenings or weddings... but, to each their own.

Today's Lineups

Brandon Nimmo - CF Edouard Julien - DH
Francisco Alvarez - C Jorge Polanco - 2B
Pete Alonso - 1B Royce Lewis - 3B
Francisco Lindor - SS Max Kepler - RF
Mark Vientos - DH Carlos Correa - SS
Jeff McNeil - RF Alex Kirilloff - 1B
Ronny Mauricio - 2B Christian Vazquez - C
Brett Baty - 3B Matt Wallner - LF
Tim Locastro - LF Willi Castro - CF
Kodai Senga - RHP Dallas Keuchel - LHP

Finally, with football season upon us, it's worth looking at this fine graphic journalism article about New York Jets player Eric Smith, and his struggles with lingering brain injury. Powerful stuff.