Matthew Cerrone: In 2006, the Phillies finished in second place, but 12 games back of the NL East Champion Mets. Nevertheless, a few months later, Phillies SS Jimmy Rollins proclaimed the Phillies “the team to beat in the National League East.” The Mets mocked his quote during Spring Training, six months before blowing a seven-game lead… to the Phillies.
“This year, tell Jimmy Rollins we are the team to beat,” Mets OF Carlos Beltran told New York media the following Spring, weeks after his team acquired Johan Santana from the Twins.
The Mets eventually lost the division by three games to the Phillies in 2008.
Today, six years later, the two teams begin a three-game series to end August, and kick off September, fighting to stay out of last place…
In fact, the standings are the complete reverse of how they looked on the final day of 2008…
“Life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans,” John Lennon once said.
This feels extra poignant today when looking at the state of this division.