Darryl Strawberry and John Franco Will Be At Bryant Park Today For The Mets Citi Tickets Pre-Sale

 

If you are in the area by Bryant Park (42 St bet.  5th and 6th Ave) today between 12PM and 1PM who can meet former Mets stars Darryl Strawberry and John Franco who will be on hand for the kickoff of the Citi card holders pre-sale for 2013 Mets tickets.

The three day exclusive presale will begin on Monday, February 25 and run until Wednesday, February 27 at 11:59 PM. Citi customers will have special access to purchase single home game tickets online at http://mets.com/Citipresale, Citi Field or any Mets Clubhouse Shop.

The Citi exclusive presale is the first opportunity for fans to purchase Opening Day, as well as Subway Series tickets. Fans must use their Citi credit or debit card to take advantage of this special offer.

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Dispatches From Mets Holiday Party

I’m back from covering the Mets holiday party where the club invited about a 100 kids from P.S. 43 and The Scholars Academy both in Far Rockaway to meet Santa (John Franco) Claus and his Elf’s R.A. Dickey and Ike Davis. Also on hand was Mets GM Sandy Alderson.

After spending time with the children and giving out gifts the players and the GM were available for some Q & A time.  After spending some time with all three I have some observations:

R.A. Dickey looked and sounded puzzled, hurt and a bit defiant when he spoke of his situation now with the club. From the way I see it, the Mets first priority with Dickey is to trade him and they are waiting out teams that are interested in trade to offer more in return to the Mets than has been offered now. How long this plays out is anyone’s guess right now but make no mistake for the Mets this is a stone cold baseball business decision and honestly I hate it and from listening to Dickey this morning he understands it’s business but he’s not happy with the way it’s played out so far either.

Dickey also declared that once the season starts he will not negotiate a contract extension, nor should he.  I don’t know which end of the organization is playing by these hardball rules whether its Sandy Alderson looking to fill the massive gaps in personnel this team has or if it’s The Skill Sets looking to nickel and dime the 2012 Cy Young Award winner. If it’s the baseball ops guys being hard ass’s I can understand it, that doesn’t mean I like but if it’s  Jeffey trying to win at a negotiation, then I’ll be totally outraged.

What Dickey is asking is not just more than fair; I believe he’s selling himself short. Dickey’s agent has proposed a 2 year extension for $28 mil, how in the hell is that excessive? Dickey should have proposed a deal well north of $30 mil for 2 years. As much as I want to believe it’s the Skills Sets acting like hard ass’s here I feel it’s more Alderson and his baseball ops who are dragging this out to see if they can get a trading partner who will send back quality and quantity in a trade.  The worst part of this situation is it’s starting to get ugly and could breakout in a lot of nasty if not rectified soon.

It was Ike Davis’ turn to meet with us and as down and dourer as Dickey was Davis was very upbeat and effervescent.  It could be that Davis is 100 % healthy as he said he just had his lungs x-rayed and they are clear so he has no more effects from Valley Fever and his ankle is a good as ever. He was very happy that Wright received his contract extension and he hoped that something can work out with R.A. Dickey staying with the Mets.  You can check out the conversation with Ike by clicking here

Sandy Alderson made his way into the press area and I don’t hide the fact that I’m an Alderson fan. I think he has a plan to rebuild this organization (even though he’s not allowed to utter the dreaded “R” word because it gives any Mets fans a case of the vapors) but I think the reason I admire him is every time I talk to him he comes off very cool and collected. You can’t make him flinch. There is no emotion in how he is running the baseball operation of this organization in that way he’s the anti-Omar.

Alderson was bombarded as expected with question on R.A. Dickey and his status with the Mets. Alderson gave a name, rank and serial number answer saying that he is still speaking to clubs about dealing R.A. and at the same time looking to negotiate contract extention as he said the situation is the same as it was last week. The contrast in Alderson talking about this situation and Dickey talking about it are quite a contrast. Dickey’s answers were of an emotional nature whereas Alderson was from the business end. Alderson has no problem trading R.A. Dickey but he wants a solid return back, he’s not going to give him away.  If he can’t find the right trade for Dickey I think he’ll sweeten the extension offer and get Dickey under contract for an additional two years.

Alderson claims there is money to spend but he’s not going to spend just to spend, he doesn’t seem to care about winning the back pages of the tabloids in December. The impression I was left with is Alderson will not be the first to blink. He’s not tipping his hand on who he’s looking at to sign or trade for.

I’m as confused and frustrated as any Mets fan, in fact coming back for Citi Field today with Ed Marcus we were both in such deep discussion about what we just heard from the Mets GM we kind of forgot what a pain in the ass traffic jam we were stuck in trying to get back to Staten Island.  No matter if you like or dislike Alderson you have to admit he’s one shrewd dude. Now if nothing changes personnel wise between now and spring training I may have to alter my view but I’m trying to stay patient which is very hard for me to do but I’m trying my best.

To hear my chat with Sandy Alderson click here.

To hear the total media Q & A click here.

 

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Hope Shines For Shannon Fund Raiser

As most of you know Shannon Forde of the Mets Media Department is battling Stage IV breast cancer and fund raiser has set up to help her and her family with the expenses that have come up during her fight.  There will be a dinner and Greet and Meet on Thursday November 1st from 7PM to 11PM at the Westmount Country Club which is located in Woodland Park NJ. Ron Darling will emcee the evening’s proceedings which will include an open bar, cocktail hour and dinner.  There will also be a silent and live auction for memorabilia from all the teams in the New York area and other teams from MLB as well. Tickets for this event are $100.

There will also be a special Meet and Greet at the same time and same venue as the dinner. Tickets for this are $250 and includes meeting and receiving autographs form  Dwight Gooden, Darryl Strawberry, John Franco, Bobby Ojeda, Edgardo Alfonzo, Ed Charles, Ed Kranepool, Matt Harvey, Daniel Murphy, Willie Randolph and Joe McEwing.

Along with the dinner/Meet and Greet there is an ongoing online auction that includes some truly once in a lifetime experiences that you can bid on like personnel pitching lessons for R.A. Dickey and Johan Santana, hitting lessons from David Wright, meeting Kelly Rippa and Michael Strahan and touring their studio, visit ESPN headquarters in Bristol CT and get a behind the scenes look at Baseball Tonight set with a guided tour and how about this one? You can bid on being a New York Highlanders P.R. Department employee for the day!

As you’ve read and heard (excellent job by WFAN and Mike Francesa who have made mention of the charity every day during the drive time show) Shannon is revered by everyone who has had the great fortune to be around her, especially the group of Mets bloggers that she and Danielle Parillo have graciously taken under their wings and provided us with access we never thought we’d ever have to cover and be around the team we’ve loved our whole lives.

If you cannot attend the dinner/meet and greet you can still make a donation to this great cause, you can send you generous donation via check made out to Hope Shines for Shannon and send it C/O DTRF P.O. Box 3145 Point Pleasant, NJ 08742.

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Metscellaneous

While the Mets were off yesterday they still made some news albeit bad news that Tim Brydak is suffering from torn capsule in his left shoulder, same injury that Johan Santana and Chris Young suffered, and is done for the season and maybe for good.

A real shame that Brydak has gone down injury and this one is devastating when you factor in his age (38) and he doesn’t have a contract for 2013. I would not count Brydak out from returning to pitching after rehabbing this injury but I doubt he’s come back to the Mets if he did.

If you are in the Tarrytown area today between 12 Noon and 1:30 PM, head over to the Citi Bank branch at 2 South Broadway to meet John Franco and get a handshake, picture and an autograph.

Ike Davis and country music performer Lee Brice will join in a benefit for Solving Kids Cancer at the City Winery on September 9th at 7 PM. City Winery is located at 155 Varick St in Manhattan.  Along with the concert there will be an open bar, raffles and an auction.

The Mets will unveil a new concession tonight at Citi Field, Pat LaFrieda’s Steak Sandwich. The sandwich is made with 100 % Black Angus Filet Mignon, Monterey Jack cheese, caramelized onions, special au jus sauce on a toasted baguette. The only thing this sandwich doesn’t have is power and the abilty to play right field. The sandwich will be sold at the Taste of the City food court on the field level behind centerfield.

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Hot Time in the Citi

 

Another game, another great pitching performance by out starting pitcher and as of last night the Mets, Nats and Fish are tied for first place in the NL East. Let that sink in while you drink your morning coffee.  

Last night Jon Niese kept the line moving with a 10K performance that was cut short due to Niese experiencing   a rapid heartbeat.  Niese suffered a bout of this last year and was checked to be fine and doesn’t seem to concerned about this time either. Maybe Niese should start taking a baby aspirin every morning, it works for me.

I was at Citi Field last night as it was that annual extravaganza called Gary, Keith and Ron Day Night in support for the charity Pitch In For a Good Cause. As always it was a wonderful event with all the raffles and auctions and getting to hang out and kibitz with Gary Cohen and Ron Darling. After discussing the Johan No hitter with Gary I was able to spend time talking to Darling who is a resident of Brooklyn NY (Keith Hernandez never attends this event as much as Mets fans love Keith it’s a one way street) about the good old days of growing up in the Boro of Churches in the 1970’s when it was far from the hipster paradise it is now.  If that wasn’t enough of a treat, the real star of the event were the Shake Shack cheeseburgers served buffet style and NO LINE!!!!!!

Not only was it GKR Night but it was also the night that John Franco was to be inducted into the Mets Hall of Fame. It was a nice ceremony complete with the Department of Sanitation Pipe Band. Edgardo Alfonzo was in attendance for the night’s festivities and I still feel that this should have been his night but I don’t want piss in the punch as Franco gave a terrific speech and everyone in attendance got a bit misty as Franco talked about his mom and dad. I understood exactly were Franco was coming from. I guess the Mets gave Franco free reign on who could be invited to his special night as his co-GM Al Leiter and David Cone, who both looked like they would rather be someplace else than sitting in Citi Field and from the reaction of the fans in the stands the feeling was mutual, were given permission from the Highlanders to travel to Flushing.  The topper of the ceremony though was when Jeff Innis and Brett Saberhagen were introduced to the crowd, that was my “Ok wrap this shit up start the game, I got work tomorrow” moment. Brett Saberhagen? Are you fucking kidding me? Oh by the way, let that be the last we see of the black jersey’s PLEASE and why did the jersey have both the regular Mets skyline logo and the 50th Anniversary logo in the sleeves with the KID 8 patch moved to the front of the jersey?    

Saw this in the team store last night I had to buy it even though it’s over priced but I’m still caught up in NO-HAN Mania.

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MY CONVERSATION WITH NEW METS HALL OF FAME INDUCTEE JOHN FRANCO

I had the opportunity to sit down with the newest inductee to the New York Mets Hall of Fame, John Franco, before his appearance at the Citi Bank branch at Madison Ave and 42 Street in Manhattan. Franco was there to promote the Citi Mets ticket pre-sale which is available to all Citi credit and debit card holders. The pre-sale is ongoing until 11:59 PM tomorrow.

I’d like to that Marc Sausa of Citi bank and Danielle Parrillo and Shannon Forde of the Mets for setting me up with the opportunity to speak with Franco

Click here for my conversation with John Franco.

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GROUND CONTROL TO MAJOR FRED

There was outrage yesterday from Mets fans as clips of the team executives and manger Terry Collins boarded a helicopter to take them to Miami to catch the Knicks-Heat game.  It was the equivalent of seeing your neighbor who you know is collecting SSI disability, drive a brand new Mercedes-Benz into their drvieway.

I’m not so much outraged that the Mets rented the helicopter for their hoops junket; I’m annoyed that they had the vessel land on one of the complex practice fields. Couldn’t they have gone to an air/heliport to do this?   

Our day as Mets fans would not be complete without some more legal mumbo-jumbo on the Skill Sets court case. Am I the only one worn out about all this court talk? Doesn’t it seem that Judge Rakoff is looking for his 15 minutes of fame, or his own court room TV show?

Johan Santana threw another bullpen session and so far so good on his comeback as he has felt fine the day after each of these sessions. I’m still not ready to say I’m optimistic of his being on the mound opening day because I’m a Mets fan, the glass is always half-empty.

Last night Mets stats man Ben Baumer, lost in the championship round of MLB Networks Baseball IQ trivia game show to Shane Demmitt of the LA Angles. Baumer did a great job in this competition as he won $35,000 for the Welcome Back Veterans charity.  I was really looking forward to this show when it was first announced, but after watching a couple of episodes I lost interest. The set was so dark and dreary looking and the contestants had the personality of Wonder Bread. The host was Matt Vasgersian who loved belittling the Mets every time Baumer was a contestant and is one of these doofus’s you run into in life who think their hip, cool and funny when in reality they’re just asshats. 

The Mets and Citi are teaming up to hold tickets pre-sale this Monday and Tuesday February 27 and 28 for Citi credit and debit card holders. In addition newly inducted Mets Hall of Famer John Franco will be appearing at two CitiBank branches in Manhattan and at the Mets Clubhouse store. Here is a release from the Mets with all the info:

As part of a series of events with the Mets Alumni Association Presented by Citi, Mets all-time saves leader John Franco will make several appearances in New York City February 27 to promote the presale and meet with fans.  Franco, who will be inducted into the Mets Hall of Fame June 3, will be joined by Mr. Met.  They will visit the following locations:

 

·         10:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. – Citibank flagship branch in Union Square (52 East 14th Street)

·         12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. – Citibank branch on 42nd Street and Madison (330 Madison Avenue)

·         2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. – New York Mets Clubhouse Shop (11 West 42nd Street between 5th and 6th Avenues)

 Additionally, all Citi customers who use their credit or debit card will receive a special 10% discount on all merchandise, excluding tickets, at the Mets Clubhouse Shop on 11 West 42nd Street between 5th and 6th Avenues only, for the duration of the two-day promotion.

“We congratulate John Franco on his upcoming induction into the Mets Hall of Fame and are excited that he and Mr. Met will be joining us to kick-off this wonderful promotion for Mets fans and Citi customers,” Brown said.

A limited number of tickets for Opening Day (April 5 against the Atlanta Braves) and Subway Series games (June 22–24) will be available in this presale.  Each Citi cardholder is limited to a maximum of eight tickets per game, subject to availability.

Tickets are available online only, but fans with any questions regarding the presale can call the Mets Ticket Services team at (718) 507-TIXX for assistance. Single game tickets go on sale to the general public Monday, March 5 at 10:00 a.m. online at Mets.com and by phone at (718) 507-TIXX. For complete ticketing information, visit Mets.com.

 

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HANG IN THERE METS FANS, METS-SANITY IS ON THE WAY

Really not much Mets stuff to talk about, we’ve already covered Johan Santana and his left arm, the new dimensions of the outfield walls at Citi Field and Daniel Murphy playing 2nd base.

We’ve discussed Sandy Alderson on Twitter (@MetsGM), the schedule for Mets bobble head days (no Kranepool bobbler though, sad!) We talked about the pessimistic/optimistic Mets fan, ticket packages, Ike Davis ankle, David Wright’s back and Lucas Duda outfield prowess.

We’ve learned that Josh Lewin will be Howie Rose’s tag team partner in the Mets radio booth, and that John Franco (not Edgardo Alfonzo) will be inducted into the Mets Hall of Fame. The new/old uniforms are back, that’s been discussed and of course the financial state of the Skill Sets and the club has been expounded upon by experts and those who have trouble making change for a dollar.

Just think we’ve discussed, debated and beaten to death these and other subjects about our beloved Metsies even while Super Bowls were won, hockey team looking like Cup Champs and a kid from Harvard has stolen the heart of hoops fans of NYC.

The manager, coaches and many players are in camp. Dispatches with the address Pt. St. Lucie are now showing up on the fish wraps, soon SNY will transmit pictures and sounds of our heroes in action and not a moment too soon as me thinks some of the fan base needs a baseball fix badddddddly.

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I’LL BE A GUEST TONIGHT ON NY BASEBALL DIGEST LIVE TONIGHT AT 8PM

 

I will be a guest on Mike Silva’s NY Baseball Digest Live radio show tonight on Blogtalk Radio, talking Mets and John Franco’s Mets Hall of Fame induction.

 

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CONGRATULATIONS TO JOHN FRANCO BUT IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN US

Yesterday the New York Mets announced that John Franco will be indicted into the team’s Hall of Fame this coming season with the pomp and circumstance commencing on June 3rd.

There has been much speculation this winter on who would be selected as the next honoree to the Mets HOF, some folks feel Mike Piazza should have been named and of course he should but it looks like the Mets are waiting for his enshrinement into the Baseball Hall of Fame so they can throw a really big shindig with Mets HOF honors and a number retiring ceremony as well.

Franco gets the honor this season for many reasons, he played 14 seasons with the Mets, holds the record for most saves in franchise history and most importantly he’s a Wilpon loyalist. Franco holds a job with the club sort of like the Mets Ambassador to Public Functions, in which he’s perfectly suited for. Late season, he volunteered his services to mentor Bobby Parnell in finding his way to the craft of closing baseball games, which if I were the pitching coach I would have strongly voiced my opposition to but it seems the front office didn’t have a problem with since it seems the GM really has no use for Parnell as we see with the addition of Jon Rauch and Frank Francisco which relegates to Parnell to fighting for a bullpen job.    

As I say, I really don’t want to piss in the punch here on Franco’s honor of Mets Hall of Famer but in my opinion, this year’s Mets Hall of Fame honoree should have been us, the New York Mets Fan.  How great a ceremony would it be to honor the long suffering Mets fan? The team could have selected the longest tenure season ticket holder to accept the award in our behalf and then commission a plaque with a nice mosaic of Mets fans who may be the most diverse of all sports teams in this town.  What better way to celebrate 50 years of Mets baseball than honoring the folks who really are the heart and soul of the organization, the Mets fan. Without us there is no NY Mets and in this upcoming season of apparent discontent, what better way to show how much we mean to this organization but to honor is with a plaque in the Hall of Fame.

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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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