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Showing posts from July 31, 2005

Fun with Statcounter III

I'll put up a real post by monday morning...working on a couple ideas at the moment. In the meantime Ok...I've gotten too many intriguing hits in the last week not to bring this up. Can the following clickers on this site please ID themselves via e-mail ? The 2 people who looked up "Joe Foy" on google The person from Massachusetts who was looking for "Carl Yastrzemski and Al Moran" on google The person from Houston looking for a picture of Charlie Kerfeld The person who logs on regularly from "Premiere Radio" The person who logged on from Random House two days in a row The person who logged on from Google headquarters The person who logged on from "Sterling Mets" and anyone else with an interesting background, or who found me through an odd search engine request...So help me, I'm curious. Sorry to those of you who might see this update on their "My Yahoo" page and think that I wrote something new. We'll have some good

Name in the News: A'Maz'In'

For the first 80 or so games of the 1987 season, the Mets were the kind of one-step-forward, one-step-back team that they've been throughout the 2005 season. A combination of injuries, Doc Gooden's drug rehab, and a few hideous losses were the cause, forcing the team to play catch-up into a September in which they came oh-so close to the division lead, but were unable to muster the necessary victories down the stretch (don't worry, I'm not writing about the Terry Pendleton home run). June 7th of that season was Banner Day, which meant a doubleheader, this one with the Pittsburgh Pirates, who hadn't won a game at Shea Stadium since September of 1985. The Mets had taken the first two games of the series and entered with a chance for their first Shea Stadium series sweep of the season. The opener pitted 21-year-old Mets rookie John Mitchell against 38-year-old crusty veteran Rick Reuschel and for six innings, the youngster got the better of things, holding a 1-0 edge

Rico Suave

In the summer of 1999, in my previous life as a sportswriter for the Trenton (NJ) Times, I wrote a lengthy feature collecting memories from people about their first baseball gloves. The idea was to compile stories from local, everyday baseball fans, and quasi-celebrities such as the mayor of the city. My goal was to get one current major-league player and our beat writer covering the Phillies suggested that I come out and talk to Rico Brogna. My specialty then was scholastic and collegiate sports, so a trip to Veterans Stadium to write was rare, but I was there in time for batting practice, at least until I learned that our beat writer had neglected to get me the day credential he had promised. By the time I talked my way into the ballpark, BP was just about done and I caught Brogna on his way back to the clubhouse. "Rico," I asked. "Do you remember your first baseball glove." His face brightened, but only for a second. "Oh yeah," he said, "but get m

About Last Night...

Alrighty, so what light can we shed on walk-off win #326 (since discovered to be at least #327)? Mike Piazza's first walk-off walk with the Mets was the 15th walk-off walk in team history It was the first walk-off walk since Jay Payton drew one against the Marlins on May 24, 2002. It is not the first time Mike Piazza had significant involvement in a walk-off without swinging the bat. Piazza, you may recall, was the batter when Brad Clontz's wild pitch brought in the winning run in Game 162 of the 1999 season, setting up the Mets-Reds one-game playoff. It was the sixth Mets walk-off to end with a 9-8 final score, the third of those to go extra innings and the second to go 11 innings (the other one of those, on August 27, 1997 against the Padres also ended on a walk-off walk (Carlos Baerga), following a ninth inning game-tying home run (Todd Hundley) The last 9-8 Mets walk-off win was on July 10, 1999 against the Yankees. That's the game in which Matt Franco's two-ru

Pinch Me

The Mets have had a lot of pinch-hit success in 2005, including Mike Piazza's pinch-hit walk-off walk on Tuesday night against the Brewers (more on that later in the day). They had a similar amount of success in 1983, though in somewhat of a different manner. 1983 is best remembered as the year that Tom Seaver returned, Keith Hernandez arrived, Jesse Orosco emerged, and manager George Bamberger departed, but statistically speaking, the best thing the last-place, 68-94 squad could point to was that it tied a major-league record with 12 pinch-hit home runs (a mark previously held by the 1957 Reds). The team's pinch-hit batting average was only .226, which pales in comparison to the 2005 squad, but there were a good number of timely hits that show that you have to look beyond the statistics. The 1983 Mets were good (or maybe the better word is mediocre) to the very last batter, who happened to be the best pinch-hitter in Mets history, Rusty Staub. We'll surely be writing mor

Tommie Terrific

This is a vent that I've been wanting to get off my chest for a little while now, but never really had the appropriate forum to present it. I take the Mets Hall of Fame pretty seriously (almost as seriously as the Baseball Hall of Fame) and it appears that, for the third straight season, there is going to be no inductee. I have a slight quibble with the Mets last Hall of Fame inductee, centerfielder Tommie Agee. My problem isn't with his selection but rather the manner in which he was selected. The Mets have had their own Hall of Fame since 1981, when it inaugurated original owner Joan Payson and original manager Casey Stengel. Since then, a voting panel, which I believe is comprised of team officials and longtime media members has voted in 19 other members. Here's the full list of inductees. 1981- Joan Payson & Casey Stengel 1982- Gil Hodges & George Weiss 1983- Bill Shea & Johnny Murphy 1984- Lindsay Nelson, Bob Murphy & Ralph Kiner 1986- Bud Harrelson

Fog-off

We wrote earlier about "The Walk-off that wasn't" and it turns out that game has a counterpart in Mets annals. On May 25, 1979, the Mets hosted the eventual world champion Pittsburgh Pirates in what amounted to a rather bizarre contest in which the Mets invoked the doctrine of fair play in lieu of a potential victory. The 1979 season was a rather ugly one for the Mets and this happened to be a particularly ugly night weather-wise, such that barely more than 6,600 bought a ticket. The weather worked well for the two pitchers, Jim Rooker for the Pirates and Craig Swan for the Mets Rooker allowed only one run on three hits through seven innings and Swan, the staff ace, entered the eighth with a two-hit shutout, but that would fall apart rather abruptly. With a runner on first and two outs, Mike Easler cracked his second home run of the season, both in a pinch-hitting role and both against the Mets (his only two homers of the season), to give the Pirates the lead. They wo