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It was 50 years ago that would, in some ways, turn out to be a more amazing season than the season labeled “The Miracle Mets.” The difference is that the New York Mets were not expected to win, or do anything good, for that matter, in 1969. Because they never had before. But they WERE expected to win in 1973.
In the seasons after 1969, 1970 and 1971, the Mets were truly competitive, with consecutive 83-win, third-place finishes.
Two men who are loved by New York Mets fans, enjoyed similar successes, and suffered similar frustrations. But each, eventually, received the respect and adoration that they so very much deserved.
Ralph Kiner and Gil Hodges crossed paths many times on the ballfields of Ebbetts Field in Brooklyn and Forbes Field in Pittsburgh, as teammates on the National League All Star team, and then both playing significant roles in New York Mets lore.
What if…what if there was baseball right now? My father used to say that “if” was the biggest word in the English language. He would say, “If…if my grandfather had wheels…he would have been a trolley car. If…if my grandmother had balls…she would have been my grandfather. If…”
Every team has their own “what ifs” that they often look back on. Well, how about these Top 10 “what ifs” for the Mets?
The Mets have made some awful trades in their history, some that have truly hurt the club over the years. Yet, they have also made some pretty good trades that helped mold the team into a winner.
This time I will examine the 10 Best Trades in Mets history:
The game has obviously changed. I never thought of baseball as a dangerous game. I thought of football as a dangerous game, but not baseball. I learned how to take out a second baseman to break up a double play in Little League. I learned how to barrel into a catcher if he had the ball and was blocking the plate. And I learned that I was going to GET BARRELED INTO if I was blocking the plate when I was catching. I got some of the eight broken noses I suffered over the years that way.
There are things that were just a part of baseball. There are things that were not in the rule book. It was just understood. It was the “code.” One thing I was always good at was stealing signs. It helped that I had a photographic memory. But I paid attention while everyone else was jerking around. I didn’t have to guess what pitch was coming when I was hitting, I often knew what was coming. And, no, I didn’t always peek back at the catcher, I wouldn’t do that. I picked up on the odd habits and, perhaps, tics that a pitcher might have that would give away what he was about to do. In fact, if a batter peeked back at MY signs, he got buzzed behind the ear on a throw back to my battery mate.
The Mets announced that they will, at times, be sporting their "racing stripe" uniforms in honor of the 30th Anniversary of the 1986 World Series Championship team. I have always had a fascination with the Mets uniforms and to be quite honest, I absolutely hated those uniforms. The home uniforms were bad enough, but the road uniforms had a weird block lettering and then a silly looking script. Heck, Keith Hernandez has so often made his opinion of those uniforms known during broadcasts, calling them "hideous." I am a traditionalist, and although I liked the brief appearance of the blue and orange piping on the sleeves during the Lee Mazzilli era in the late seventies, early eighties, I am truly partial to the traditional home uniforms. But my favorite is the traditional away jerseys with the tiffany style lettering on the front and the full block numbers on the front and back.
And uniform numbers worn by the players always seemed to pique my interest. I am sure most people can be presented with a number and immediately associate it with a specific Mets player. In fact, sometimes you see a number on a player’s back and you either love the player or simply the way the number looks and all of a sudden that becomes YOUR number.