It wasn't long ago I sat in the Buffalo Bisons press room after an R.A Dickey start. As a guy who at best covered high school sports, I was out of my depth and let The Buffalo News' Mike Harrington and a few others assembled in the room ask the questions.
The first thing I thought was, this guy is too good to be true. It was a borderline comedy show in the press room, but Dickey was also a guy that didn't pull any punches after a mediocre start. There were no "I just need to get better and get them next time" clichés. Dickey was self-effacing with a grin, and didn't take things too, or himself too seriously. Good start or bad start, Dickey was the same guy.
So, like Harrington and the rest of the folks on the Bison beat, I started pulling for Dickey. After a few more starts in Buffalo for the well-travelled Dickey, he finally got the call up to the Mets after an injury to pitcher Jon Niese. He has not looked back.
There is no overstating it now. The run Dickey is on with the Mets this season is something that arguably has not been seen in the history of Major League Baseball.
Looking at Dickey's numbers, you just shake your head in disbelief. Right now, he's arguably the best pitcher in baseball, and those numbers bear it out. His 0.89 WHIP is staggering, and a .194 batting-average against is fourth in Major League Baseball and second in the National League.
Dickey still has his doubters. The jaded (and rightfully so) Mets fans are waiting for the other shoe to drop and for Dickey to become, well, R.A Dickey again.
It's not going to happen, at least in 2012. Whether or not it's going to be enough to lift the Mets to an improbable playoff run remains to be seen.
If they do make it, or at least chase a pennant in September, they can pin their success directly on Dickey. It would have been another miserable summer at CitiField without Dickey. Instead, his Mets are tied for the Wild Card lead in the middle of June, something nobody would have predicted.
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