As expected the alarm was rough this morning but I am glad I went and am still buzzing. It was a simple event with Kevin, Gary Cohen and Howie handling the bulk of the talking and the honorees coming out one to accept and chat. This was a lot of typing on an iPad on a bumpy bus so hopefully not too many typos or spelling “corrections.”
The winners are below with the other nominees in parentheses:
Keith Hernandez (Kranepool, Kingman, Olerud)
- the panel gives Kranepool some props and mentions he has the most hits at Sheaa which never registered in my brain. They also say had Olerud been a Met longer this might have been a discussion. Keith comes out and rules the roost and tells a great King,an story I won’t spoil.
Edgardo Alfonzo (Millan, Flynn, Backman)
- Edgardo takes his place in Mets history and tells some good Rey Ordonez stories.
Jose Reyes (Harrelson, Ordonez, Santana)
- Jose accepts in a brief pre recorded video message.
David Wright (Brooks, Hojo, Ventura)
- I found it interesting they used a black and white photo of Hubie. I also counted 43 stars on the logo they were using. I notice things like that. David says he is a Met first and foremost and gets a big hand.
Cleon Jones (Foster, McReynolds, Floyd)
- Cleon was the absolute star of the evening. SNY should lock him in a rom with Howie and have Cleon tell stories. In the post TV Q&A Cleon said that Gil did not show him up by taking him out of LF but that Cleon’s ankle was sore. Spoke as highly of Gil as Seaver does. Great storyteller
Carlos Beltran (Mookie, Dykstra, Agee)
- my big takeaway is that the Mets apparently had three of their all time players playing together and did nothing. Is that the managers fault? The GM? If I told you you could have three of your franchise’s best playing together shouldn’t you win something? Or at least not have the disasters the Mets have had?
Darryl Strawberry (Swoboda, Staub, Bobby Bonilla)
- Bonilla was booed and Howie was giggling on stage.
Mike Piazza (Grote, Hundley, Carter)
- Mike was not in attendance. I was surprised but until I learn why I won’t comment.
McDowell and Tug (Lockwood, Neil Allen, Benitez) (Orosco, Myers, Franco)
- the first surprise of the night. I thought Franco would get on because The Legend Of John Franco has been strong. Skip Lockwood gets some strong props. The crowd guffaws when Benitez is mentioned.
Seaver and Koosman (Gooden, Darling, Come) (Matlack, Sid, Leiter)
- Matlack got some praise. Look up his stats kids. Nice to see Koosman getting some love again, he had sort of disappeared from the conversation for twenty years. The emotional Seaver showed up. He started to wander a little but after a rough proverbial first inning Tom locked in and told some great stories I won’t spoil and I hope make the final edit.
Manager Davey Johnson (Casey, Gil Hodges, Bobby V)
- this one is wrong. This one bothered me all night. Two of these guys have their number retired and there are only three numbers retired. I never saw Gil manage and I am clearly of the Davey era but I think if you spot me a rotation of Gooden, Darling, Ojeda and the rest I could win 90 games. Davey was fired. Davey was always on the verge of being fired. All that talent and one championship.
I’m not saying Davey was bad but when I listen to my elders speak of Gil Hodges I just can’t fathom how this is possible. I had said for months that this would be Gil as long as Seaver was alive. Stunner. We shall debate this one later in the week.
GOON HERE: This is a shot here from the end of the night after the tv taping. Grabbed it with my real camera. Wright really loves egging the Elder Statesmen of the Mets on. Told Fonzie he was getting up there in age and called Seaver that Hall of Fame guy over there…. It was a fun night. I really enjoyed all the stories that were told by Gary, Howie, and Kevin leading up to the nominees and the winners and then Ihearing the stories from the players themselves was also great. WATCH THE SHOW WHEN IT AIRS THIS WEEK.
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