I thought the disappointment would linger for a few days, but I find myself filled with appreciation more than regret today. Do I think they should have beaten the Cardinals? Of course. But does it make the 2006 Mets anything other than a success? Not at all. This franchise has come a long way since the days of Roger Cedeno and Roberto Alomar. I have faith that we won’t have to wait six years until the next postseason appearance.Ryan McConnell, Always Amazin’

I want to rip the mole off Carlos Beltran™s ear with no anaesthesia for taking a called third strike. You know and I know but apparently Beltran didn™t know that with an 0-2 count Wainright was going to throw Uncle Charley. You can™t go down looking with bases loaded 2 out and down 2 runs even if it™s a Camp Day game in August against the Pirates. In the 9th inning of Game 7 for the NL Pennant you just keep your mouth shut because nothing you can say will justify going down looking like that. PROTECT THE PLATE CARLOS PROTECT THE PLATE. – Steve Keane, The Eddie Kranepool Society

If you’d been told we’d get that pitching performance from Oliver Perez, you’d have taken it. That we’d give up three runs? You’d have taken it. That we’d hold Pujols at bay all night? Ditto. And if we’d been told it would come down to bases loaded, a dunker away from tying it and a gapper away from the World Series and Carlos Beltran at the plate, you’d have taken that too. (And if I ever meet Endy Chavez, I’m buying him a beer for a catch that will always have me leaning closer to the TV in disbelief.)

Look, you’re going to replay that drive of Spiezio’s just missing Shawn Green’s glove in your head for a long time. You’re going to be puttering through some winter duty and realize that for several minutes you’ve been muttering to yourself, Called strike three. Called strike three. Goddamn it. It’s going to happen, just like I can close my eyes and see Orel Hershiser raising his arms (in a Dodger uniform) or Kenny Rogers missing the plate or Piazza’s drive not going far enough. Be ready for it. Jason, Faith & Fear In Flushing

I’m looking forward to seeing Oliver Perez pitch next year after spending a whole spring training with Rick Peterson. I don’t think I’ve ever been more proud of the efforts of a Mets pitcher. Despite being trashed by the experts as the worst pitcher ever to start a game 7, Perez did everything you could expect and then some. His one real mistake of the night was grooving one to Scott Rolen, and Endy Chavez’ highlight reel thievery saved that one.

I’ll leave it to others to find goats in this series. My disappointment with the results can’t trump how proud I was of these Mets, who survived one blow after another that would have crippled a lesser team.Mike Steffanos, Mike’s Mets

To be a Met fan is to know and understand that when the chips are down in the last frame of the last game, the Mets will never, ever, go down without a fight. Win or lose, there will never be a one-two-three inning to end a big game. And the Mets did not disappoint in that regard.

But to be a Met fan is to also understand that those ninth inning rallies could always end badly. And that sickening games like the one you saw on Thursday are part of the deal.

Instead of Detroit, the Mets will head straight to the winter caravan. Six years after one big rival celebrates at Shea, the other big rival does the same. And it’s another season where the only movement that Shea Stadium sees is right field sinking another foot along with the hearts of many Met fans.

And the only thing rising will be me up a tree as Tommy Lasorda tries to convince me to watch the World Series.Metsradamus

As reporters talked to the Mets, several more reporters walked into the clubhouse soaked in liquor, returning from the visitors™ locker room just down the hall.

œI™m going to get naked in five minutes! screamed Chris Carpenter, the Cardinals ace, who was doused in champagne and beer.

Once the Cardinals were finished with their Barefoot Bubbly Burt, they took to Buds and Bud lights out of a large trash bin. They said œnice! a lot and did fratty things like pound their stomachs after chugging a beer.

œIt makes it extra sweet, said Braden Looper about clinching the final game at Shea. – John Kolbin, New York Observer