Just 24 hours after going on a rant about a baseball trade that infuriated me to no end even though the move did not involve a team I care about whatsoever, I’ve been reminded why I love the game of baseball, and why I love my New York Mets.
Today, Major League Baseball announced that Mets pitcher R.A. Dickey has been named the National League Cy Young award winner.
I’ve spent countless hours over the last 10 months writing about Dickey, whether it was in the defense of him deserving to be the starter at the All-Star game or if the Mets should sign him to the extension he certainly deserves. So, I’ll keep this specific article short and sweet.
There is no pitcher in the National League that deserved the award more than Dickey. The feats he accomplished this past season, including back-to-back one-hit shutouts with 10+ strikeouts and a 32 and 2/3 scoreless innings streak, were thoroughly unmatched. He became the most reliable pitcher in the National League despite featuring the most unpredictable pitch as his best weapon. He truly was the best pitcher and the best story the league had to offer.
As a true, die-hard Mets fan, I was naturally expecting this award to be stolen from Dickey in some way, shape or form. I mean, that’s just how things go in Flushing. Right when you think you’re about to do something great, the wheels always seem to fall off.
However, this time, that wasn’t the case. A Met got exactly what he deserved, and hopefully gets much, much more. Next to David Wright, R.A. Dickey is without question the second most important Met the team has to build their brand around. Dickey has earned his place firmly in the hearts of Mets fans, going from the first cut of Spring Training, to rotation anchor, to star, all in a matter of three years. He will always be worth the price of admission, regardless of the line-up the team puts on the field around him. He makes fans want to watch the game, which is arguably the most important asset a player could have in this generation of media.
Unlike the Marlins ownership group, the Mets understand what R.A. Dickey is worth. They know that he is inherently more valuable to the Mets as more than just a pitcher than he is to other teams. Dickey knows this, too, which is why he probably won’t settle for a hometown discount. I can understand, as hard as that may be, if the Mets trade Dickey. But, I also know the Mets will need to be overwhelmed with their return in players to facilitate a trade in the first place. They aren’t just going to trade him for the sake of trading him. If Dickey moves, I know it will be to make the team better.
Today, I don’t even want to think about a life without Dickey. He is a National League Cy Young Award winner. He is the best pitcher in the league.
And he’s something a Met fan can finally feel proud about.