Mourning the Mets

Over at the New York magazine blog, Sam Anderson captures one of the sentiments felt when the Cardinals defeated the Mets.

These Mets have officially passed from innocence to experience. The municipal joyride is over. The blank slate has been scribbled on. The budding superstars are now just plain old superstars. Reyes has been crowned the most exciting player in the game, which automatically makes him slightly less exciting. The once-infallible Wright has picked up a reputation for big-game failure that could, if he’s not careful (or if he’s too careful), end up defining his career. And Beltran is no longer the most charmed clutchmonster in human history; he’s just a very good outfielder.

These Mets can never overachieve again. They’ve entered the life cycle of success: Next year they’ll improve from good to great; they’ll get either bitter (if they lose) or smug (if they win); and in a few years, they’ll degenerate back to good, then mediocre, then bad, then terrible. This was the official first step of their slide from spontaneous youthful magic to bloated Yankee decrepitude. The miracle window has closed until at least 2025.