Sure, technically, baseball has returned -- we've already had a week full of weirdness and walk-offs and way too much snow. But still, something was ... amiss. The grass wasn't quite as green, the sky not as blue. And then, on Saturday night at Citi Field, the fog was lifted: Year 19 of The Bartolo Colon Experience is officially underway.
Bartolo was hard at work this offseason. He flipped baseballs on the beach, he slammed the heck out of some ropes, he exhibited some of his legendary power in the batting cage. And in his first at-bat against the Phillies Saturday, that hard work paid off -- do not adjust your screen, that blur nearly hustling out an infield single is really just human man Bartolo Colon:
Afterwards, Colon was humble in the face of his own greatness. "I'm not that fast of a runner," he told MLB.com's Anthony DiComo following the Mets' 1-0 loss to the Phillies. "My job is to do my job on the mound."
But that was simply the opening act. This season, it appears, Bartolo is no longer just content to provide us with immeasurable joy from the pitcher's mound -- he's determined to make all other fielding positions obsolete:
"I tracked down the ball well," Colon told DiComo. "Once it was hit, I thought I was the only one who had the opportunity to catch it, so I made the play."
Bartolo Colon is back, and 2016 is going to be just fine.