New Yorkers can be a tough crowd. They demand victories and expect excellence.
Even Derek Jeter did not always escape the wrath of Yankees fans. Late in April 2004, in the midst of an 11-2 loss to the Red Sox, Jeter flailed weakly at a two-strike pitch from Derek Lowe to see his average drop to .197. The fans let him hear it with a chorus of boos.
Mike Piazza, now one of the most beloved Mets of all time, heard those boos as well. When the Mets acquired him from the Marlins in 1998, the initial relationship between Piazza and Mets fans was uneasy. Heading into free agency, many believed Piazza preferred to sign elsewhere. "I like it here," he said, but nobody believed him. A couple of months into his tenure with the Mets, a stable of fans was still letting him have it.
He kept hitting. The jeers turned to cheers. Piazza never reached free agency, signing a long-term contract before the end of October, a $91 million deal that was the biggest in baseball history at the time.
So, Francisco Lindor, you're in good company -- and you've already learned that you're a long way from Cleveland.
Lindor signed a 10-year, $341 million extension with the Mets before playing his first regular-season game with the club. It took less than four weeks before the fans at Citi Field serenaded him with boos earlier last week. There were only 8,000 fans in attendance, but the message was loud and clear: It's time to start producing.