If I asked you, before the WBC, which team might have a player seriously injured not just during the World Baseball Classic, but doing something non-play involved during the WBC that feels like the baseball gods got loaded and said, “Hey watch this!”, there would only be one answer, right? You couldn’t possibly think of anyone else but the obvious response. It’s like asking who on Popeye is most likely to eat a cheeseburger, or who on Three’s Company had the wheelbarrow of cocaine in their trailer (OK, that actually might be tough). Sometimes the question is the answer.
Ladies and gentlemen, the New York Mets:
Updated: Diaz tore the patellar tendon in his right knee, which will require surgery and cause him to miss the upcoming MLB season, per Jeff Passan.
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This almost certainly will start a very annoying thread of why the WBC shouldn’t exist, but this could have happened to Edwin Diaz getting out of the car, and in fact, it’s surprising that a Mets player may have suffered a devastating injury in March while doing something on a baseball field at all. True Mets fashion would have had getting accidentally clipped by the guy mowing the outfield or a valet driver. It could have happened in a spring training game. Certainly the tournament meant a bunch to Diaz himself, otherwise, why would he be in these celebrations? It really sucks that this came at the end of one of the most raucous games to ever take place in this tournament, a win-or-go-home between teams with the most passionate fanbases that actually brought life to whatever the fuck they call the place the Marlins play in now. But we shouldn’t lose sight of that because of some horrible luck. Which is all it is, even if the METS aspect of it sits on it like a cartoon ape.
Secondly, the Mets might be OK? As historically dominant as Diaz was last season, he’s still a relief pitcher. Sure, maybe leaning on his slider far more than he ever had turned him into Hulk Eckersley permanently, but he also had a career season. One of the Mets’ problems last year was a bridge to Diaz, and they didn’t exactly solve all of that in the offseason, But it’s not unfeasible that David Robertson and Adam Ottavino can at least cobble enough together for a couple of months before the Mets find something via trade. No one’s going to be Diaz ‘22, but no one has to be exactly either.
But on the other hand…METS. José Quintana is out until the All-Star break if they’re lucky after his rib grew a gremlin (benign, thankfully). Brooks Raley had to pull out of the WBC with hamstring issues. Kodai Senga missed a start in Florida. For as much money as Steve Cohen has thrown around, for as much as he’s warped the game and broken the brains of some of his fellow owners, three-fifths of this rotation is over 35, and their season kind of hinges on that rotation. There is no amount of money that can cancel out the METS factor. You can’t buy love, you can’t buy happiness, and you can’t buy an escape from METS.
This only could have gotten more Queens Baseball if Vince Coleman threw a firecracker at Diaz during that celebration. Or if David Cone exposed himself while he was warming up in the pen and he was so shocked he tripped over the rosin bag and blew out his knee while Mr. Met failed to protect him because he was too busy flipping off a young girl in the bleachers. That’s just about the only more Mets moment possible.
The sad part is there will be more than a few owners and GMs who will use this as an excuse to hamstring the WBC in the future, preventing their players from appearing or severely limiting what they can do. When what the tournament really needs is to be taken even more seriously and moved into the middle of the summer. Other sports have always dealt with the threat that players will get hurt playing for national teams or in offseason workouts or whatever else. Baseball isn’t special.
On the flip side of the coin…METS. No one at Citi Field can outrun their nature.
If you absolutely need a fake tough guy, Jordan Binnington in your man
You haven’t thought about the St. Louis Blues much this year, and that’s how it should be. There’s never a point in your life where it would be a good thing to remember that they exist. But just to provide a quick update, they’ve had one of the better comedy acts in the NHL this year, and his name is Jordan Binnington.
Binnington hasn’t been able to stop a balloon this season, but that hasn’t stopped him from acting like a complete horse’s ass for most of the campaign (a St. Louis tradition!). Ol’ Bins has at various times tried to blindside opponents from the net or thrown temper tantrums after getting lit up repeatedly. Binnington is no stranger to being an asshat off the ice either. Any way you look at it, this guy is a complete douche canoe, to the point where even his own coach was calling him out in the press to stop being such a tool.
He was at it again last night:
There’s really no better look than trying to fight a guy after he’s just scored on you and you’ve given up five goals in 33 minutes. Which has been a continuing theme in Binnington’s season. Then again it’s Blues tradition to always worry about the things that don’t actually matter, and so maybe much like Diaz and the Mets, Binnington is the perfect representation of what the term “St. Louis Blues” really means. Down there, being a pissbaby is more important than wins and losses. They worship Yadier Molina after all.