It's time to "Shea goodbye"

They did not get the MLB All-Star Game or a daily ESPN tribute to famous moments in their stadium's history. But, with little national attention, the New York Mets closed the doors to the place they had called home since 1964.

Yankees fans had it a bit easier. By struggling to make a playoff push the entire season, fans came to terms with the lights being turned off Sept. 21 for the last time with no postseason since 1994.

The Mets had something to play for, down to their final game. The regular season may have ended, but the team and its fans had hopes of a World Championship in Shea's farewell season.

But the final game at Shea left the New York Mets and their fans stunned, crushed and in a state of utter disbelief.

The scene was set. Win on the final Sunday and play at least one more day or lose, and rely on the Chicago Cubs beating the Milwaukee Brewers to force a one-game playoff on Monday.

With a planned pregame tribute to the stadium and the electricity carrying over from the commemoration, it seemed completely impossible for the Mets to lose the game.

Early afternoon rain pushed back the starting time until 2 p.m. and the pre-game commemoration was held off until after the final out of the regular season.

The game was a classic battle for the ages even without a win. With a scoreless first five innings and Carlos Beltran's game tying two run home run in the bottom of the sixth, the Mets still seemed destined for victory and to give Shea Stadium another day.

Back-to-back eighth inning home runs by the Florida Marlins off of a problematic Mets bullpen sank the New York Mets playoff hopes for the second straight season and closed Shea Stadium with a somber final chapter.

On the post-game, former Met Keith Hernandez put it best. "It feels like I just got punched in the stomach," he said. "I am in complete shock at what just happened here today."

He echoed the sentiments of many Mets fans, and though the stadium celebration was coupled with complete disappointment of missing the playoffs, it continued on.

After the game, the club and its fans commemorated Mets legends and reminisced about the many memorable events in Shea's history. Classic footage of former ballplayers played on DiamondVision in a touching tribute.

While the question could be endlessly debated about closing the historic ballpark in the Bronx, one thing is for sure: the Mets truly needed an upgrade from Shea Stadium.

Citi Field promises to be a state-of-the-art facility that belongs in the pinnacle of the global marketplace that is New York City.

There have been two World Championships, once-in-a-lifetime concerts, and memories that will stay with fans for a lifetime, but the time has come to "Shea goodbye."