I listened to most of the Mets game on WFAN Sunday.
Following his trademark "Put it in the books!" after the final out, Howie Rose closed by talking about the Mets' 13-5 record against the American League.
Then he said, "It's the last they'll see of the American League until, they hope, October."
I never thought we'd be hearing a statement like that at this point in the season.
It's funny - in other years where I thought the Mets would be true contenders they always wilted when it came time to play the American League. (They came into this year 1 game under .500 in interleague play.)
This year, when it didn't seem early on like the Mets would be contenders, they have easily had their best year ever in interleague play. (I'm making a guess here. I can't find this number anywhere to make sure...but I'll keep looking and if I find out otherwise I'll certainly let you know.)
And it's one thing for me to talk about the Mets in October - it's second nature for me to be hopelessly optimistic. To hear Howie Rose say it....it makes me realize the Mets are becoming legitimate contenders.
It's the way the Mets are winning these games that is impressive, too. The players they need to produce are producing. (See: Jose Reyes and David Wright.) When they don't get the production they expect from certain players (See: Johan Santana) they get picked up by others (See: Jonathan Niese and R.A. Dickey).
Now here's an interesting stretch for the Mets. First of all, they go on the road. Secondly, they play Florida and Washington, two teams who have played them very hard this year. And the last time the Mets hit the road against the Marlins, it was probably their low point of the seaason - a four game sweep in Miami. The good news here? The series is in Puerto Rico, not Pro Player/Dolphins/Joe Robbie/Landshark Stadium.
The Mets are 43-32 right now. They've stumbled every time this year they've tried to get to 12 games over .500. So that also makes this an interesting stretch. Before the All Star break, the Mets have three games against Cincinnati (leading the NL Central right now) and the Braves (who the Mets trail by a game and a half in the East). So here's another chance to see what the Mets are made of.
13-5 against the American League means the Mets are just 30-27 against the National League this year.
And you don't get to play the American League in October unless you get out of the National League in July, August, September and October.