Category Archives: Throwback Thursday

Throwback Thursday: Christmas Birthdays

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On this wonderful Christmas day, we look back in Mets history to see what notable events occurred on this day.

Since baseball, of course, isn’t played in December, and teams usually don’t finalize transactions on the holiday, opting to spend time with the family, it was difficult to come upon a notable event from Mets history that took place on December 25th.

And then I found two. Two notable players from Mets history, regardless of for how long they donned the blue and orange, were born on this day.

First, there was Rickey Henderson- the fastest, most incredible baserunner in MLB history. One of, if not the, greatest left fielder in MLB history. He was a Met from the 1999 season into early 2000. For more on his impact in Mets history, check out my article “What if Wednesday: Rickey Henderson”.

Here’s Rickey’s Hall of Fame Induction speech, which came after he received 94.8% of the vote in 2009, his first year on the ballot.

Happy Birthday, Rickey!!

The other Mets birthday today is that of Al Jackson. The southpaw starting pitcher, fondly known as “Little Al,” pitched for the Mets from 1962-1965, and then again from 1968-1969. While most of his records have been broken, he set virtually every Mets pitching record during his time with the team.

He established a Mets single-season record for walks in 1962, which he broke himself in 1963.

He established a Mets single-season record for shutouts in a single season in 1962.

He established a Mets single-season record for strikeouts in 1962, which he then broke in 1963.

He established a Mets single-season record for wins in 1963.

He established a Mets record for all-time shutouts.

Al Jackson was one of the first Mets, and he was a great one no less… And on this Christmas day, we shouldn’t forget his impact.

Happy Birthday, Al!!

#ThrowbackThursday: #Thankful4TheMets

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In honor of thanksgiving, I wanted to pay tribute to the team that we’re all thankful for: The Mets.

Please share the hashtag, #Thankful4TheMets, on twitter!

Enjoy the below Mets tribute video that we made!!

#ThrowbackThursday: Bobby Valentine is a Master of Disguise

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On June 9th of 1999, the Mets played the Toronto Blue Jays, in a game that they ultimately won in the fourteenth inning.

In the twelfth inning, Mike Piazza was called for catcher’s interference, and Mets manager Bobby Valentine came onto the field to argue the call. He was ultimately ejected, and thus, had to leave the field and the dugout.

But Valentine didn’t go easy…

Follow the link below to get a video of what Valentine did next, and Bob Costas’s commentary!

http://m.mlb.com/video/v8852885

#ThrowbackThursday: 2006 Mets Clinch the NL East!

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2006. What a magical year to be a Mets fan…

We had SIX All Stars! SIX (Paul Lo Duca, David Wright, Jose Reyes, Carlos Beltran, Pedro Martinez, Tom Glavine)! That’s as many as we’ve had the last three seasons combined, and that’s only if you count a coach (Terry Collins) as an All Star bid…

The Mets won 97 games! No, I didn’t mean 79- I meant 97… In the past few years, 97 wins has only been conceivable for the Mets in video games…

Heck, Lucas Prata (a one-hit wonder who was pretty popular back in 2006) even wrote us a team anthem! How many single-season teams do you know that have a team anthem? Not that many…

The whole season was just an amazing experience… And watching this amazing team officially earn the title of NL East Champions was just pretty spectacular.

2006 was a fairytale-like season for any Mets fan. For once, their home-grown talent combined with their high-profile acquisitions to make the fans proud.

Let’s just hope that we can see something similar next season…

#ThrowbackThursday- Endy saves the day, and then Beltran ruins it

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The year is 2006. The Mets are in Game 7 of the NLCS against the Cardinals.

The Mets were good that season. Like, really, really, really good. They won 97 games, which tied for the most in the MLB, along with the Yankees.

The Mets entered the playoffs as the #1 seed in the NL. They faced off against the Dodgers in the NLDS, and made them look silly, sweeping them in 3 games.

And so, they were on to the NLCS to face the St. Louis Cardinals… The two teams traded victories through the first six games, until it was a sudden death situation- it was Game 7.

The score was tied at 1 in the sixth inning, when the Cards’ superstar third baseman, Scott Rolen, stepped up to the plate with one man on. The pitch came in from Oliver Perez, and Rolen hammered it to deep left field.

And then this happened…

Hands down the greatest, most clutch, most exciting home run robbery that I’ve ever seen. Endy Chavez practically saved the game for the Mets, as if he hadn’t made this spectacular play, the Cardinals would be leading 3-1.

The Mets were in a perfect position to win the game and go to the World Series for the first time since the Subway World Series of 2000.

It was the top of the ninth, and the Mets’ shaky reliever, Aaron Heilman, was on the mound. Yadier Molina, St. Louis’s star backstop, stepped up with one man on and hit a ball to deep left field. It followed nearly the exact same path as Rolen’s near home run from earlier in the game, only this time, Chavez couldn’t reach. The score was 3-1, and the Mets season was flashing right before their eyes.

But there was still a chance. I mean, the Mets had one of the best offenses in baseball that season, and this lineup was filled with some pretty good players. The Mets still had a chance…

St. Louis’s rookie closer Adam Wainwright was on the mound (yes, that Adam Wainwright). He let up singles to Jose Valentin and Endy Chavez to start the inning. Two outs later, with Paul Lo Duca at the plate and Carlos Beltran on desk, Wainwright yielded the walk to Lo Duca.

It seemed like a storybook setup- “NLCS, Game 7, bottom of the 9th, bases loaded, down 2 runs, the team’s best player is up at bat.”

As Carlos Beltran, the Mets star player, strode to the plate, a sense of confidence slowly grew in the minds and hearts of Mets fans.

Tension was building with each passing moment. The pitch from Wainwright… STRIKE ONE! And the 0-1 pitch… STRIKE TWO!

The Mets were one pitch away from the ending to their phenomenal season.

Wainwright’s 0-2 pitch comes in. It seems hittable, right in the strike zone. And Carlos Beltran stands there. Just watches.

And just like that, with Beltran’s short, but very impactful, lapse in judgement, the Mets storybook season was over.

#ThrowbackThursday- The Buckner Play

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28 years and 3 days ago, one of the most famous (or infamous) plays in baseball history happened. With the Mets down to the Boston Red Sox 3-2 in the World Series, they were on the brink of elimination, with 2 outs in the bottom of the 10th inning.

Mookie Wilson stepped up to the plate. Ray Knight on first base. Kevin Mitchell on third. 10 pitches go by. Wilson has a full count.

Bill Buckner, the Red Sox star slugger, is playing first base.

The eleventh pitch comes in to Wilson. He swings. Easy ground ball to first base.

The ball goes through Bill Buckner’s legs, into right field! Ray Knight came in for the winning run!

The Mets had tied the series, and were headed to Game 7. The Amazins were still alive!

This play changed the fate of the Mets, and ultimately, they ended up winning their 2nd World Series of all time.

The “Bill Buckner Play” will never be forgotten by any baseball fans, but especially the fans of those lovable Mets!