I miss rivalries. The Mets have had some good ones in their time: Mets-Cards (Herzog, HoJo, Andujar. Molina). Mets-Cubs (Durocher. Black Cats. Seaver’s one-hitter. 1984). Sadly, with all the division swapping in recent years, we don’t see these teams enough and alot of good rivalries have fallen away.
But there’s still the Mets – Braves. And tonight, the rivalry renews its vows.
It’s hard to call it a rivalry though, since for most of their 14–year reign as division champions, the Braves mostly owned us. It’s fun to chant “Larry” at Chipper, mock the chop and John Rocker but the fact is, the Mets got beat far more than they applied a beating in the last decade-and-a-half.
The Braves are much improved this year so these matchups should be great fun to watch. Tonight is also Perez’ first start. The success of this season depends greatly on how he responds this year. Perez had a great postseason, after a so-so 2006. If he can finally live up to his potential, the Braves and the rest of the NL East is in big trouble.
The Braves have Mark Redman going out tonight. Shawn Green is 6–7 against him lifetime so Friday’s game is a good chance for Shawn to pad his numbers and keep his job intact.
I’m just happy the rivalry is still intact. Over at Home of the Braves blog (with the excellent tagline: “The Atlanta Braves: Because Milwaukee was too hard to spell”) they summed up the situation perfectly: “The Braves and Mets is a good baseball rivalry. We can't stand the Mets, and the Mets can't stand us.”