Swallows Return to New York Sports

By Eddie Mayrose

Each year, around the feast of St. Joseph (March 19th) the famous cliff swallows of San Juan Capistrano return from their winter vacation spot 6,000 miles south in Goya, Corrientes, Argentina. While it is truly one of nature’s wonders, it isn’t as unique as many might think. Here in New York, we annually celebrate the return of our own type of swallows; loony birds with no capacity to remember past failures who are destined to perpetuate their own suffering.

New York Jet Fans Return to Capistrano

My heart goes out to Cheap Seater Lou Ricciardi. He’s been mentioned before in this space as a long suffering Jet fan that can’t stop himself from being sucked into the hype. Perhaps in an attempt to conceal his gullibility, Lou sent me a blurb that he found on a Jets blog, rather than put his own name to the same, misguided optimism. Anyway, some poor slob submitted a long post about the death of the “Same Old Jets” and mocking Gang Green’s naysayers. As if his heart won’t be broken once again.

I have to admit, these New York Jets have me stumped. I had predicted a standard, garden variety collapse; to the tune of a 6-10 season. However, as I’ve watched them dominate both sides of the ball on their way to compiling a 3-0 record in the AFC East as they welcome back three Pro Bowlers this week, I am at a loss to discern from which direction disaster will eventually strike. Now, I’ve been a Jet fan my whole life and carry the scars to prove it. They’ve crushed my spirit so many times that I’ve developed a keen sense of impending doom; but it’s failing me at the moment. Don’t get me wrong. I’m still completely convinced that, somewhere down the road, the season will go terribly wrong. Not only that, the longer it takes, the more it will sting. For now, though, I’ll enjoy the ride, right up until it runs me right into the brick wall that’s always waiting for Jet fans. However, unlike poor Lou Ricciardi, I’ll be wearing a seat belt.

New York Knicks Return to Capistrano

Can’t imagine that any of the Knicks’ brass was shocked to find that Eddy Curry had, once again, reported to training camp overweight and out of shape. In an unusual twist, Curry has become the team’s longest tenured player; mostly due the waning skills and obscene contract that make him completely untradeable. Just another example of how the gifts of Isiah Thomas just keep on giving. And, in this case, eating.

New York Mets Return to Capistrano

Here they go, again. Fred and Jeff Wilpon in search of two or three thousand opinions on the best way to return their franchise to the top of the NL East while completely missing the point that their indecision is the very reason the Metsies are floundering. Let’s try this, Freddy. Go find a solid, established baseball lifer (Sandy Alderson?) and then LEAVE HIM ALONE. Keep sonny boy away from him, too. Say all you want about the failings of Jerry Manuel and Omar Minaya, there’s no disputing that they were always hamstrung by your lack of commitment to a long-term direction for the team. I don’t know who may be on the radar to fill either position, but the notion being floated around that Wally Backman is somehow ready to handle a major market franchise has disaster written all over it.

We’ve seen, courtesy of YouTube, Backman’s over-the-top volatility when things don’t go his way. Not exactly the demeanor necessary to handle a sometimes combative press corps. Besides, word out of the NY Penn League is that Backman hasn’t necessarily expunged all of the demons that caused the Diamondbacks to withdraw their managerial offer a few years ago. Get it right this time, guys, or your brand new ballpark is going to be empty for a long time.

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