Checkout These Upcoming Events Featuring Former NY Mets

 

 

 

On Tuesday June 19th The Glider, Ed Charles and Art Shamsky will doing a meet and greet with Mets fans at the Citi Bank branch at 78-09 Metropolitan Ave, in Middle Village, Queens. Here are the particulars:

WHAT:           CITIBANK BRANCH APPEARANCE AND AUTOGRAPH SIGNING

WHO:             METS GREATS ED CHARLES AND ART SHAMSKY

WHEN:          TUESDAY, JUNE 19, 2012 FROM 12:00-1:30 PM

 

WHERE:        CITIBANK BRANCH – 78-09 METROPOLITAN AVENUE IN MIDDLE VILLAGE, NY

 

 

If you’re still trying to figure out your plans for Father’s Day you may want to check out this event at Empire City at Yonkers Raceway:

Empire City Casino at Yonkers Raceway in Westchester County, New York will celebrate a “diamond-studded” Father’s Day on Sunday, June 17, with a special Empire City Baseball Giveaway, and all-day Autograph and Question & Answer Sessions by notable New York stars as Mets and Yankees World Champions Darryl Strawberry, Ron Darling, Ron Swoboda, Ed Kranepool and Roy White, and the legendary Brooklyn Dodger hurler Ralph Branca.

YES Network’s Yankees analyst Jack Curry will serve as the host.

The first 5,000 male Empire Club members to visit the Promotions kiosk in the Gotham Palace on Father’s Day will receive a free Empire City baseball. And here is the full lineup of baseball greats who will be on hand to make Father’s Day a special one for dad:

11:30 AM-1:00 PM: Ralph Branca, Brooklyn Dodgers All-Star pitcher

1:00-2:30 PM: Ron Swoboda and Ed Kranepool, 1969 NY Mets World Series champions

2:30-4:30 PM: Darryl Strawberry, three-time NY Yankees World Series champion, and NY Mets 1986 World Series champion

4:30-5:30 PM: Roy White, NY Yankees World Series champion

5:30-7:30 PM: Ron Darling, 1986 NY Mets World Series champion, SNY Mets analyst

 

Host: Jack Curry, YES Network Yankees reporter and analyst

 

 

In addition, a Father’s Day Buffet will be held in Good Time Room from 11:00 AM-10:00 PM. The prices are:  Empire Club Members $24.95 per person, Non-Members $29.95 per person.

 

 

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BOOK REVIEW: A MOMENT IN TIME-RALPH BRANCA

I know, not another book about the Brooklyn Dodgers, there have been more book about them Bums than tomes on dieting, aging and becoming rich, put together, but “A Moment In Time by Ralph Branca with David Ritz” (published by Scribner) is a bit different, it’s a look at a man who has led a great life both on the baseball field and off but is still haunted by an event that happened 60 years ago.

Branca tells the reader of the great upbringing he had and his love of his family comes through quite clearly. A couple of subjects that Branca talks about that made me pause while reading was that his mother was born Jewish but converted to Catholicism’s and his wife is the granddaughter of Steve McKeever, a part owner of the Brooklyn Dodgers.  Of the two, I wish Branca went into more detail on what it was like dating and then marrying the daughter of one of the team owners and what was their mind set during the upheaval of the team leaving Brooklyn.  Branca does let us know that he puts most of the blame of on Robert Moses than O’Malley for the team’s departure to the West Coast.

The strongest parts of this book are Branca’ frank talk about the managers he played for and of course, October 3, 1951. When Leo Durocher was the Dodger manager Branca was one of Leo’s boys and Branca felt that he was a baseball savant. When Durocher left and went to the hated cross town rivals, New York Giants, Durocher tried to deal for Branca by offering Bobby Thomson in return. WOW! It wasn’t until Branca finds out about the elaborate sign stealing operation the Giants were using did he declare Durocher dead to him. Branca had problems with the field bosses who followed Durocher in Brooklyn. Burt Shotton, sat on the bench in street clothes, with a sharpened #2 pencil and kept a score card. That was the extent of his tactical prowess. Charlie Dressen had a bad case of Durocher envy which Branca doesn’t hold back his disdain for.  Reading between the lines a bit, I got the sense that Branca/Dressen relationship was testy due to Branca’ involvement with the owner’s daughter, as Dressen comes off as a very insecure man, especially down the stretch in 1951.

The final couple of chapters of the book deal with Branca hooking up with Bobby Thomson and hitting the card show circuit. Both men made a very nice piece of change teaming up and signing autographs for a fee, but Branca always had the fact that the Giants were stealing signs and his feeling that Thompson got the sign of the 0-1 fastball he hit out the Polo Grounds for the most famous home run in baseball history, clearly on his mind whenever he and Thompson teamed up. I got a chuckle when Branca writes about not wanting to be a “whiner” about the subject but continues to whine about the subject.     

Branca tells the reader up front that he is an old timer who is very opinionated and that comes through loud and clear. This is the “one more Brooklyn Dodger book” that’s worth a read.

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