Les Mets auraient dû retirer le numéro de Darryl Strawberry
Willie Mays était un grand joueur.
En fait, beaucoup diront qu’il était le meilleur joueur polyvalent de l’histoire de la Major League Baseball. Vérifier ses statistiques et tous les temps forts du Temple de la renommée du baseball.
Mais Mays était loin d’être génial lorsqu’il portait l’uniforme des Mets de New York les deux dernières saisons de sa carrière.
Malheureusement, c’était mémorable de la pire des manières. Imaginez Mays, l’un des plus grands joueurs de centre de tous les temps, jugeant mal les balles volantes dans le champ extérieur. Imaginez Mays, également rapide sur ses pieds, trébuchant et pataugeant autour de la troisième base essayant de marquer.
Si vous êtes assez vieux, c’est ce dont vous vous souvenez des jours de Mays au Shea Stadium.
C’est pourquoi l’annonce surprise des Mets de retirer son numéro 24 dans le cadre de la Journée des anciens au Citi Field samedi était embarrassante et inutile.
Mays was a Giant. First in New York and then San Francisco. He wasn’t a Met – even if he played in Queens in 1972 and 1973. Nobody remembers Joe Namath as a Los Angeles Ram.
Sure, for some Mays’ fans, it was a great and touching moment. Still, there are other former Mets as deserving to have such an honor.
We should start and stop with Darryl Strawberry.
His impact on this do-nothing franchise when he arrived can’t be minimized. He was the billed as a star when he broke into the bigs in 1983 and was that for the Mets until 1990. Back then, the Mets dominated the back pages of the tabloids over New York Yankees’ coverage.
He was the National League Rookie of the Year. He made eight straight All-Star teams (seven for Mets 1984-1990). He won Silver Slugger Award twice. He led the NL in homers in 1988.
Best of all, he helped the Mets win their second – and last – World Series in 1986. Nobody who is a Mets fan will ever forget that homer off Bob Nipper late in Game 7 to seal the deal.
Strawberry is the Mets’ all-time HR leader with 252. He’s second in RBI. And Straw is ninth all-time in hits. Yes, No. 18 was a Mets’ favorite.
And even while Straw went thru Hell in his personal life in the past, he has cleaned up his life and become a good member of society through his ministries.
The time has come to recognize, Straw for the thrills he provided. In the case of Mays, it is another example of the Mets doing too much.
The Yankees, arguably the most-storied team is sports history, would be the most logical place to salute the greats of New York Baseball.
But they have no Jackie Robinson statue, no shrine of Mays.
It’s not out of disrespect. It’s out of logic.
The Yankees celebrate their own history, tradition and players. The Baseball Hall of Fame is in place to celebrate all the greats. Teams should be left to celebrate their players, so when new fans – the kids – come to the ballpark they can learn and eventually appreciate the players that came before the current stars they root for.
Some love new Mets’ owner Steve Cohen, the billionaire who grew up a Mets fans and has embraced the team’s past. But quite honestly, he has botched everything he’s touched so far in recognizing what and who is important in Mets’ lore.
Tom Seaver Day was mishandled and downgraded. Somehow, the Mets had Seaver’s statue unveiling and tribute on April 15th – Jackie Robinson Day.
So on the day all of baseball was celebrating Robinson’s legacy of breaking the color barrier in 1947 when he took the field for Brooklyn Dodgers, Seaver’s story played second fiddle.
It should have been the talk of baseball. After all, the Hall of Fame pitcher was the greatest player to wear a Mets’ uniform. He shouldn’t have shared a stage with anyone else on his day. Recently, the Mets’ retired Keith Hernandez’s number 17. Again, he was a St. Louis Cardinal who came to NYC and helped the Mets win a World Series. It just seemed like a stretch and flew under the radar, too.
Then Saturday’s Mays’ celebration. The city of San Francisco already had that party. There’s big statue out front of the ballpark honoring the “Say Hey Kid.”
It’s appropriate and fitting.
This keeping une promesse de Joan Paysonle premier propriétaire des Mets, à Mays s’est senti comme un étirement 40 ans plus tard.
Mays était génial, mais jamais un Mets génial. Fraise était, cependant.