Not all cheaters in sports are treated the same

When reliever Jenrry Mejia, just back from an 80-game drug suspension, got whacked for another 162 g
Mets pitcher Jenrry Mejia
Mets pitcher Jenrry Mejia

When reliever Jenrry Mejia, just back from an 80-game drug suspension, got whacked for another 162 games by Major League Baseball for PEDs, fans of his New York Mets had his back.

Well, they rushed to his back . . . so they could push him out the door.

Fans of the team shared the reaction of general manager Sandy Alderson, which can be summed up pretty easily: How could any sentient being who has mastered the art of respiration be so stupid?

Besides, he is, in the words coined by Bill Parcells, Just a Guy. Just a Guys don’t get third chances. Most times, they don’t get second chances.

Mejia, once penciled as the Mets closer, was just an arm in the Mets’ bullpen. Maybe they could have used him Thursday when New York gacked away a 7-1 lead and turned it into an 8-7 loss to the San Diego Padres. It’s doubtful he will ever wear the blue and orange in Queens again. There is rarely a redemption story for the fringe player.

Now Tom Brady? He could go on a drunken rampage with a flamethrower and burn down half The Hub, and he’d be forgiven by Boston’s faithful for his “hijinks.” Deflating footballs and destroying evidence? New England Patriots fans are not going to turn on him for such misdemeanors, especially when Roger Goodell poses a target bigger than 10 football fields. Barring a major transgression beyond the game, he will always be Teflon Tom in New England.

(In New York, that’s another matter: The “Cheaters Look Up!” banner flown behind a plane over Patriots’ practice Thursday was some fine trolling. Rich New England fan, it’s your turn: If you can’t come up with a curt airborne putdown for a team that hasn’t won a title since 1968-69, turn in your No. 12 replica jersey. You don’t deserve it.)

Then there’s A-Rod. Always A-Rod.

He’s never been ignored like Mejia, or truly beloved like Brady. And Yankee fans did turn on him when he was suspended for the 2014 season for PEDs. Going into 2015, Alex Rodriguez was supposed to be an anchor on the season, expensive deadweight on the bench at the end of a tarnished career.

Except he started to hit. And kept hitting. He has not only helped the Bombers, but led them. And whaddya know? That cheater dude, the self-aware narcissist who just wants to be loved as much as he loves himself, is back in good graces — for now.

Until he stops hitting. Then the Yankee fans will have his back the same way Mets fans had Mejia’s.

There is crying in baseball

If there’s not a TV show already called That’s So Mets — see Thursday’s gut-splitting loss — they would have to invent one.

The Wilmer “There Is Crying In Baseball” Flores Debacle — which resulted from the leak of a trade Wednesday night that never actually went down — created a firestorm on Twitter. Flores thought he was traded and got emotional on the field, and he stayed in the game. The baseball world and social media thought he was traded, and reacted in horror and anger at the perceived cruelty. Everybody but his manager, Terry Collins, heard of the supposed deal.

It was a bizarre night. In the end, the trade — which included Zach Wheeler going to the Milwaukee Brewers in exchange for Carlos Gomez — reportedly got scuttled because the Mets were concerned about Gomez’ hip. That in itself is not a big deal; trades fall through over medicals all the time.

But leaving Flores in the game was inexcusable, if only because it fit the narrative of the Mets being a bumbling organization. Somebody should have informed Collins of the situation. And so went another episode of That’s So Mets.

No, Virginia, we don’t hate the Yankees

The Gazette did not have a print story the morning after the Yankees’ 21-5 Tuesday night victory over the Texas Rangers. Reader/caller Virginia was outraged, convinced the sole reason for the omission was because we hate the Bombers.

Is she right? Let’s break down the possibilities:

A. We at the Gazette hate the Yankees, by far the most popular baseball team among our readers, and this was the best way to show it. As Virginia said, we surely would have run a game story out front if the Rangers had won by that margin.

B. The marathon slugfest out west ended too late to get into print. (But a story did appear after midnight on Daily-

Virginia went with A. Unfortunately, as most of you would surmise, the correct answer is B.

Honest, we don’t hate the Yankees. Actually, the team we hate is . . .

Oh, up against deadline. No time to answer. Sorry.

Categories: Sports

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