LET’S RAISE A GLASS TO THE ’86 METS

Man, 25 years ago. So where was I 25 years ago tonight when the most famous ground ball in baseball history went through the wickets of Bill Buckner?

I wasn’t at the game, I was home watching with my wife as we were in month seven of our marriage. The only game of the series I attend was Game 1, the game that turned on a ball getting through the legs of Tim Teufel, a play that gets lost in the Buckner Blunder, ruining a beautifully pitched game by Ron Darling with help from Roger McDowell.  

One of the issues with watching Mets games on TV back in ’86 was Bay Ridge Brooklyn was NOT wired for cable television back then. There was a whole quagmire with franchise rights by the cable companies, if you wanted the lucrative Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights account you had to take the less desirable East New York, Flatbush area as well. So after all the graft and bribes were dished out, I think it wasn’t until 1988 when we Bay Ridgeites  got  hooked up to Time-Warner Cable, so back in ’86 I spent most of my time in the numerous bars of Bay Ridge that were equipped with these enormous satellite dishes on their roofs to watch Mets game televised on SportsChannel.  So when games were on “free TV” I’d give my wallet and liver a break and stay home.

Game 6 was on a Saturday night, I remember we went for an unusually early dinner (my kids have a hard time believing that the same couple who fall asleep on the couch at 9PM used to go out until 4 or 5 the next morning on a regular basis. It’s the same way their stare at our wedding picture in which I have this incredible crop of curly brown hair. The tilt their heads from side to side like it’s some abstract painting in a gallery trying to figure out who the guy is with their mom. Lovely.) and then came home. Before getting home I stopped at the deli on 5th Ave to pick up some Molson Golden for my game libation. My wife sat with me for the first few innings (she is not big on watching Baseball or any sport on TV, she’ll go a games in person and enjoy it but to sit and watch on TV? Ain’t happening) then decided she go to the bedroom and watch something else. Of course she fell asleep, so it was just me, Vin Scully (Mets fans were very upset with Scully’s critiques of the Mets during this series)  Joe Garagiola and my six bottles of Molson.

Everyone knows about the bottom of the 10th inning of this game but the inning that gets lost in history is the bottom of the 8th where the Mets were down a run. Former Met, Calvin Schiraldi comes in for the Red Sox to help preserve the lead and bridge to Bob Stanley, the Boston closer. After a Lee Mazzilli (pinch hitting for Jesse Orosco) leadoff single, Davey Johnson went against the Earl Weaver book he was weaned on, to play small ball. Lenny Dykstra comes up (by the way after six Molson on top of the cocktails I had at dinner, I’m now talking to the TV like I’m sitting with Scully and Garagiola. I wish there was Twitter back then, my drunked Tweets would have been memorable) and lays down a sac bunt that he beats out, so now the Mets have 1st and 2nd no outs.  Wally Backman comes up and he lays down a sac bunt that moves Maz to 3rd and Nails to 2nd after an Intentional Walk to Keith Hernandez to set up a double play at any base, up stepped Gary Carter.

Here is why Mets fans love Gary Carter, nobody loves a pressure situation and came through in those situations like Kid.  That’s why when you sit in Citi Field and the Get Well Soon video comes on the screen, everyone stops and watches. That’s why when I see Ron Darling in the Stand Up For Cancer PSA, with his I Stand Up For My Catcher sign, I get a lump in my throat. Gary Carter was a great Met, retire his #8 PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I digress, Kid comes though with a Sac Fly scoring Maz and we are tied at 3.

After the top of the 10th where Rick Aguilera gave up 2 runs, all I need is a hand gun as I’ve turned into Elvis Presley , looking to shoot my TV. After two quick outs in the bottom of the 10th I am one ornery intoxicated Mets fan, with my TV remote in my hand I was ready to turn off the set as there was no way I was watching the Red Sox celebrate this World Series (the pain of 1973 was flashing through my mind) but then, he comes that man again, Gary Carter with the base hit but here I was pissed at Kid for that hit. Please put me out of my misery already but my misery turned to ecstasy.

“HONEY, WAKE UP! WAKE UP! THEY WON!!! THEY WON!!! THE METS WON!!!! YYYYYYEEEEAAAAHHHHHH!!!! GAME FUCKIN’SEVEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!WWWWOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO”

My wife thought I’d lost my mind, I told get up and get dressed we got to go out. She looked at me like I was nuts but then she heard all the commotion coming from 5th Ave and then the phone started ringing as friends and family wanting to talk about the most improbable win in Mets history. There was no sleep that night/early mornings, bars and clubs of Bay Ridge were hoppin’ till sunrise and so was I.

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R.I.P. DUKE SNIDER

A very sad day for those who remain of the Brooklyn Dodgers fan base as the Duke of Flatbush has passed away at the age of 84. Not only is it sad that Snider has passed, but he was also the last remaining regular of the Boys of Summer.

Snider was like most of the Brooklyn Dodgers keeping a residence in Brooklyn during the season. Snider and Pee Wee Reese lived in Bay Ridge Brooklyn on the same block as my godparents.

Everyone who lived in Brooklyn during The Era has some kind of Dodger story

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DON’T HATE ME BECAUSE I’M EXCITED ABOUT THE RULE V DRAFT

I had the pleasure of appearing on Mike Silva’s NY Baseball Talk show last night on Blog Talk Radio where we discussed the disconnect that some Mets have with reality.

The fact that I know who Boof Bonser is has impressed my friends.  Hey, we can’t neglect our Bisons now, can we?

The Mets selected 2B Brad Emaus from the Toronto Blue Jays (JP must know something here) and RHP Pedro Beato (FINALLY A MET!!!!) from the Baltimore Orioles in the Rule V draft. Emaus has some power and is built like Dan Uggla, so I guess throw Emaus name in the 2B competition this spring. Beato was drafted by the Mets in 2007 as a draft and follow and tried to sign him for $1mil in 2008 but the Commissioner’s office advised against spending that money on a 15th round pick. Beato went back into the draft was taken by the O’s and given the same $1mil the Mets were willing to give out. Oh well, Beato born in the DR was is a Brooklyn boy as he excelled at Xaverian H.S. in beautiful Bay Ridge Brooklyn.

Looks like Ken Oberkfell will be rewarded with the position as Terry Collins consigliere, good to have Obie on board.

Word on the street is Johan Santana won’t be ready to pitch for the Mets until June. No problem. What I’m curious about is how the manager and GM handle the everyday questions about Santana. I’m hoping they address it in spring and inform the MSM that the next time you hear about Johan is when he’s ready to join the big league. Let’s concentrate on the living.

So the Highlanders look ready to shit their pants and offer Cliff Lee a 7 year deal. The kicker will be if the Rangers make a play of 6yrs and sweeten the dough, what will Lee do? Now that Carl Crawford will be grazing in the left field of Fenway Park , the Red Sox have to be favored to win the AL East with that potent lineup and terrific pitching, Lee has the Boss’s Boys by the balls. Yes, I fuckin’ love it !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!    

We will now have a moment of silence to mourn the death of #Frenchtober

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SEE SPOT RUN

The idea of the slider is to fool the batter that it’s a fastball but then when it breaks the way it should (like down and away or down and in) it should it is an extremely effective pitch but it is also a high risk, high reward pitch especially when Pedro Feliciano throws it.  So today Feliciano took a risk and threw a slider to a couple of guys Brad Asmus and Darin Erstad who had five HR’s combined coming into the game and instead of just challenging both batters Feliciano goes with sliders which hung just enough over the middle of the for both batters to tee off and take him long. As the Bobby Valentine always says, Proper preparation prevents piss poor performance, that saying should be hung in Pedro Feliciano’s locker.

I have to say I love that the Shea in game staff was hip enough to play the Dropkick Murphy’s when Daniel Murphy comes to bat, I am curious if he chose that or not.

Today I was in beautiful Bay Ridge Brooklyn and as we were walking on 5th Ave I passed a sporting goods store named LEDGENDS. They had a rack on the side walk of MLB baseball jerseys on sale for 10 bucks. No bullshit these were like $200 jerseys with names and numbers sewed on for 10 bucks. The problem was most were Cardinal jerseys with Scott Rolen and Jim Edmonds names on them so they were out. There were Red Sox road jersey with RAMIREZ on them so no go there either as were the Cubs, Phillies and the Mets Tom Glavine top. But there was one that caught my eye and after a lot of thinking and putting it back, picking it up, putting it back, I said “ah what the hell I got to take this for 10 bucks” it’s a home pinstripe Mets with 44 MILLEDGE on the back For a double fin I’ll represent for my boy LMILLZ.

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Tickets

The Mets are looking great this year and The Eddie Kranepool Society keeps you up to date on the good bad and the ugly. If you are looking for Mets Tickets, you must visit Coast To Coast Tickets for all your ticket needs. CTC carries MLB Tickets as well as some of the best priced Concert Tickets on the web and don't forget they also carry Yankees Tickets.

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