How the Mets can retire 8 and celebrate 1973 in the greatest ceremony ever

carter and yogi

Everybody with me? Do I even have to write the post?

Mets, you know I love you.

We both know nobody is going to wear #8 any time soon.  If you give #8 to the next Desi Relaford you’ll have a riot.

You haven’t given 8 to anyone in 10 seasons and counting.

Here’s the move.

Announce you are honoring the 73 team and Carter.  You will sell the place out.  You like that, right?

Since Gary cannot be at the ceremony you need someone worthy.  A catcher.  A fellow Hall of Famer.  Someone who wore number 8.

That man also happens to be the manager of the 1973 Mets.  1973 + 40 = 2013.

As Dan hinted at the other day you won’t have Yogi forever.

Some will say that Carter has nothing to do with 1973 or that Yogi has nothing to do with Carter.

This is about FAMILY.  Did your family ever double-up that it’s someone’s birthday and someone else’s anniversary or Christmas or graduation?  Of course you have.

Why can’t we celebrate two things at once?  Have Tom and Buddy there.  Have Keith and Darling there.

Maybe do it Saturday April 20th when the Mets are on Fox and Davey Johnson will be in the house.

Someone will say Yogi is a Yankee.  He managed the 1973 Mets.  He’s part of our family too.  He might be Aunt Sally’s second husband but we sure as hell had him to Thanksgiving Dinner and everyone liked him.  He’s Yogi Berra, a catcher, a Hall of Famer, and he also is an 8.  It’s perfect.

If this one can’t generate a full house, teary eyes and a standing ovation then you really might as well consider  moving to Mercury.

Steal this idea Mets.

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28 comments
jimmy demertzis
jimmy demertzis

Koosman,McGraw,Hernandez,carter,strawberry,gooden ,mookie,Davey Johnson,piazza,Franco, they all should have there numbers retired and be honored for a day ,they may not all be hall of famers but in the mets 50 years of playing ball in the ggreatest city in the world ,they were great mets ,they won , they are pillars .that should be rembered in mets lore and for future generations to know that those numbers on the wall ,helped built the orange n blue , its time to honor these men ,its a no brainer Fred wilpon ,give these men a day for fans to thank em

Seth
Seth

No, thank you. If you were actually around in 1973, you'll remember that Yogi was pretty universally disliked as a manager. He had nothing to do with the Mets' surge to the series, and in fact may have cost them the series.

Kathy C
Kathy C

And, Brian, as far as Yogi giving a speech, I think we can forget that. At this point he doesn't know what planet he's on.

Kathy C
Kathy C

And if we're going to retire numbers, how about Jerry Koosman (36) or Bud Harrelson (3)? Or Gooden (16) or Strawberry (18). It will never end.

Andre
Andre

Damn it I am a grown man and should know not to cut onions next to the computer while reading stuff like this.

DCA
DCA

Guy only had two above average seasons as a Met.

William Martin
William Martin

I completely agree Carter's #8 should be retired; but how can you without retiring Keith's #17? If Gary was the heart of those 80's teams, Keith was their soul. His HOF response was a travesty; ask most players of his era if Keith Hernandez is a Hall of Famer. Moreover I haven't seen too much of #17 on the field over the past fewyears; perhaps they are waiting for the retun of Mr. Koo?

Pete B
Pete B

Not a knock on Gary, but there are other players who probably would deserve to have their number retired before Gary. Keith is an obvious choice that many have mentioned, but what about Jerry Koosman? In my opinion he did more in a Mets uniform than Gary and for a longer period of time. Wouldn't really campaign for either, but think they have have a better resume than Gary.

5w30
5w30

#8 should be retired as an active number in New York baseball, period. Shannon and yrs truly think that's a great idea to commemorate the 1973 Mets team, which DID go to a World Series ... a rare occasion for any Mets team. It'll cost money, and the Mets will actually have to think this through. Who doesn't like Yogi Berra?

Dubsy
Dubsy

KC - - Um . . . the Yankees DID retire #8

Kathy C
Kathy C

The first thing I thought when I read this was: F*ck Yogi Berra. Ninety-nine percent of Mets fans correlate the #8 with Gary Carter -- not some Yankee has-been. Sorry, but that's the way I feel. If the #8 is so important to Yogi Berra, let the Yankees retire it. Whether Gary died or not, the #8 should be retired as should #17 for Keith Hernandez. Yes, Yogi was once our first-base coach and managed the '73 team to the World Series but his legacy is with the Yankees. If we're going by "offending" someone, then any number worn by a player that gets retired would have to be okayed by every player before him who wore that number. That's ridiculous. As far as retiring Clendenon's number, I say yes and primarily because both he and Ray Knight wore #22 and, coincidentally, they were BOTH our World Series MVPs (1969 and 1986, respectively). That distinction warrants retiring #22.

Dan Twohig
Dan Twohig

Can't get on board with this idea Shannon (yes, there are sometimes opposing views within the MetsPolice Department). Carter was an Expo first and foremost, and as BPALM pointed out, for most of his Mets years he wasn't a great player. Yes, he was a key component of the Mets winning the WS in 86, but you could make the same argument about Donn Clendenon in 69, and I don't see anyone clamoring to retire his number. It's forgotten that the Mets have already honored Carter while he was alive. On August 12, 2001 the Mets held Gary Carter Day where the Kid was honored and inducted into the Mets Hall of Fame.

BPALM
BPALM

I get it, Carter was a big reason the Mets won in 86 but 2 reasons his number should not be retired. He was only a Met for 5 seasons and only 2 of those seasons were good seasons. From 87 to 89 he was not a good player. The argument to retire his number is completely flawed. I don't even agree that #17 should be retired and he has a far better case than Carter does.

Paul
Paul

I'm on board with honoring the 1973 team, but not with retiring number 8. If they didn't do it for Gary Carter while he was alive, there's no point in doing it for Carter and Yogi Berra now.

Mets lady
Mets lady

You know, that's how I remember it. I thought he was a lousy manager.

Kathy C
Kathy C

I got into a "discussion" with a co-worker on who was a better 1st baseman: Keith or (ugh) Don Mattingly. My response? "Who's the hall of famer? Keith!" Ooops. How a lifetime .300 hitter with 11 Gold Gloves is NOT in the HOF is beyond belief!! How in the world did that happen? And a lifetime .250 hitter (if that) like Phil Rizzuto DEFINITELY belongs in there. Yeah, right.

Anthony N.
Anthony N.

The whole Gary vs Keith thing shouldn't be happening. Keith, Dwight and Darryl ruined their HoF chances and shortened their careers by using cocaine and not living up to their talents through their time in MLB. They were all better players statistic wise with the Mets than Carter but none of them were a HoF like Carter. If they didn't jump on drugs maybe they'd have the retired numbers and Cooperstown plaques. Carter should have nothing to do with them. Carter had his career shortened by injuries from playing a demanding position on concrete every day. As far as retiring number 22 because of the MVPs maybe they need to keep it issued instead. :)

Kathy C
Kathy C

If we're going to honor the '73 team -- who, despite "you gotta believe" faith and went seven games in the World Series -- then let's honor the 2000 team (who also lost the World Series). Nope, sorry. Let's not get "honor crazy" here -- we only had TWO rings and if we're going to honor those rings, give the proper recognition in the Mets Museum to the 2 WS MVPs as there is no mention of it now.

Kathy C
Kathy C

Yes, Yogi Berra was known as a manager who was not respected by his players. He was considered "too soft" as a manager. Player after player went down because of this hurting or that hurting, to the point no one believed that this many players were hurt. The Yankees fired him after 16 or so games. Glad they retired his number. I have no use for Yogi Berra and the Mets shouldn't either.

Brian Erni (@brianerni)
Brian Erni (@brianerni)

well first off, the yankees have retired 8 for yogi. secondly, shannon isn't saying 8 should be retired for yogi. he's saying that once the 1973 team is honored, yogi should speak and give a speech that says something like, "when i managed this team, i had the great honor of wearing number 8. but today, as we're gathered together as a mets family, we honor another number 8: one who's legacy will live forever beyond the left field wall. gary carter." wait...maybe howie should say that. i'm not sure yogi could get through that with making the clear connection. anyway, i'm sort of with the guys on this. love kid, but don't think his number should be retired. retired 31, and i hope when all is said and done, 5. anything more than that is debatable, which is not something the mets have wanted when retiring numbers.

Anthony N.
Anthony N.

Mattingly was a better hitter and fielder than Keith. I'm not even sure how it's debatable on the hitting part, but fielding wise it is a bit closer. The problem with gold gloves back in the day, it was given out on reputation much more than it is today. Keith was smooth no doubt, but let's not pretend he was saving a ton of runs or impacting games with his glove. Gold glove at pitcher and first base is near meaningless. Don Mattingly was the best hitter in the game for a couple seasons. Keith was never that good.

Kathy C
Kathy C

Okay, maybe it was my hatred for anything Yankees that made me blurt out what I did, but thinking all of this over -- rationally, this time :) -- I agree that #8 should not be retired for anyone. Gary Carter had his best years with the Expos, no two ways about it. Maybe it's sentimentality for the '86 team, as well as Gary being the "missing piece" (although he was there in '85 when the Cardinals trounced us), that makes us want to honor Gary. Gary and Keith were co-captains. Perhaps there can be some recognition for that honor when and if David Wright ever gets coronated, But Gary went into the Hall as an Expo and that's where he was most dangerous. Love Kid, though! Whenever I see that #8 shirt with the teardrop by The7Line it makes me sad and happy at the same time.

Kathy C
Kathy C

True, we will never know how much better a career Keith Hernandez would have had, had he never used drugs in the first place. The same can be said for Dwight Gooden and Darryl Strawberry. But even WITH the drug usage, Keith still finished his career with a .300+ lifetime batting average and 11 Gold Gloves. Those numbers alone warrant serious consideration into the HOF, especially when there are players in there with less deserving numbers. And the one person who always comes to mind is Phil Rizzuto, who went in with a .250 (give or take) average! Maybe his defense helped, but I doubt he had ELEVEN Gold Gloves. And if leadership counts for anything, Keith was a leader of his team. I just think he oughta be in there.

Anthony N.
Anthony N.

Neither one should be in Hall. Just making an example of greatness. Keith was never great. Mattingly for a time was great. If Keith laid off the drugs and took his career seriously maybe he could've been a HoF guy. We'll never know. Mattingly had the back issue that killed him. Maybe if he stayed healthy we'd have him up there with Eddie Murray. Part of being a HoF is longevity. Mattingly doesn't pass that test.

Anthony N.
Anthony N.

I grew up watching them both play. I've been a Mets fan probably before you were born. Which makes me wonder if you actually watched them play. Hitting wise Mattingly was the best in the game for a couple years. Defensively Mattingly was slick. The man was great. Never in Keith's career would I label him as the best first baseman, best player or even best player on his team. Not saying he wasn't good. He was. But he was not ever as good as Mattingly was. Not really close.

Kathy C
Kathy C

Mattingly only had a few good years and his career was diluted by less-than-average seasons. I have no doubt at all why he hasn't been voted in the Hall. He doesn't deserve to be there. He watered his numbers down by subpar play, more often than not.

Anthony N.
Anthony N.

In my humble opinion, the Mets should put the expos 8 on the wall. Not officially retiring it, but righting a wrong when the Nats didn't keep the expos numbers. Then later when an established star arrives, like Henderson and #24, it's given out. That should appease everyone.

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