Mar 27, 2015

Timeline of the Mets Female Mascot: Lady Met to Mrs. Met

The character of Lady Met was first introduced on banners, leaflets & flyers as a cartoon figure in the mid sixties. She was then pictured with the original Mr. Met back in the sixties. Soon, Lady Met started making appearances, showing up with Mr. Met around Shea Stadium. 

Her appearance was similar to Mr. Met, a large baseball head, with big eyes, but Lady Met had long eye lashes, long red hair and a more shapely figure. Lady Met sported an orange flip shoulder length hair style, with matching orange lipstick & a mod mini skirt. She also wore a little sweater with her name "Lady Met" across her chest. The chick was cool, she was not yet known as Mrs. Met & as she had her own identity. 

In the seventies she finally tied the knot & became Mrs. Met. The two would be seen together at Shea Stadium, before games & at the 7th inning stretch. 

By the time the eighties rolled around, both she & Mr. Met had disappeared from the organization. In the mid nineties Mr. Met came back but it took a few more years for Lady Met or Mrs. Met to make her return.

In 2003 Mrs. Met returned, as she & Mr. Met with three little Mets children, appeared on an ESPN Sports Center commercial in 2003. 
In 2005, centerfieldmaz photographed the Mets family riding in a red convertible, at a Mets game in Shea Stadium. Strangely, that day Lady Met was not wearing her orange hair, was this Lady Met, Mrs. Met or another female character?

Finally In 2013, just in time for the All Star Game at Citi Field, the Mets officially announced the return of Mrs. Met. The club said that she had been working as an event planner & was returning to work full time, now that the kids are grown. Mrs. Met greeted fans around New York at the All Star Game events in her return. 

She now has a new hair style, sporting a brown pony tail under a Mets cap. She wears high sox with black sneakers & a white Mets home uniform. In addition to her on-field appearances, Mrs. Met also shows up for rare non-game-day events.

The 30th Anniversary of Fictional Mets Player: Sidd Finch (1985)

On April Fool's Day 1985, Sports Illustrated asked veteran writer George Plimpton to come up with a sports type of April Fools article for that weeks edition. He came up with the fictional story of Siddhartha Finch, a rookie pitcher who was training with the Mets at Spring Training camp.

Finch was to have been raised at an English orphanage, later being adopted by an archaeologist who would later die in a plane crash. Finch attended Harvard University & then learned to master yoga in Tibet which helped his pitching style. He wore a heavy boot on one foot & had to choose between a baseball career or playing the french horn. He was said to have a fastball that could reach 167 miles per hour, which right there should have killed the stories truthfulness. But in any event, the story was published & many believed it.

The Mets organization joined in as actual pictures where taken of a guy named Finch (actually he was Joe Berton a teacher from Illinois) with Pitching coach; Mel Stottlemeyer & outfielder Lenny Dykstra. The Mets even gave him a uniform #21.

The story went out & some fans were thrilled about Finch being on the Mets staff. Sports Illustrated was flooded with requests for more info on Mr. Finch. One of the New York papers called the Mets saying how he was upset Sports Illustrated got the scoop before he did. 

Reportedly two baseball GM's asked MLB Commissioner Peter Uberroth is it was safe for his batters to stand in against the hard throwing Finch. 

The Mets went as far as to give Sidd Finch a locker at Al Lang Stadium between Darryl Strawberry & George Foster. The major networks as well as Florida news papers attended a press conference on April 2, 1985 where Finch announced his retirement. The next week SI printed the story of his retirement as well & then the following week announced it was a hoax.

It remains one of baseballs best practical jokes ever done. In the end Plimpton would turn the story into a 1987 novel.

Fictional Mets Infielder: Saturday Night Live's Chico Escuela Visits Mets Spring Training (1979)

Bill Murray interviews (Garrett Morris) Chico Escuela

On March 27, 1979 original Saturday Night Live cast member; Garrett Morris joined the Mets at Miller Huggins Field for Spring Training. At the time the Mets were still holding Spring Training in St. Petersburg Florida. 

Morris was filmed being interviewed by Bill Murray as the fictional legendary Mets player: Chico Escuela uniform #5 (cinque). Escuela was famous for his spoof of the latin players of the time, who did not speak much English. His famous quote "baseball been berry berry good to me" began the previous year on SNL's weekend update.

Bill Murray & Ed Kranepool
It was said during the mock 1979 Spring Training interview, that Chico ( a nine time All Star second baseman) had given up his job at the Weekend Update Sports desk to make a comeback with the Mets at age 41. Chico had fictionally written a tell all baseball book; "Bad Stuff About the Mets" which ticked off some of the Mets  Players.

In good fun many Mets players are seen in the locker room greeting Chico Escuela at his locker. Short time Met; Nellie Briles who did not make the club out of Spring Training was interviewed about the fake book, as was Steve Henderson who said "As far as I am concerned Chico can pack his bags now".

Bruce Boisclair Chico Escuela & Ed Kranepool
Ed Kranepool does the biggest interview with Murray, after he grabs a throw away from Chico and turns his back on him. In the book Escuela claimed Kranepool borrowed his soap & never gave it back. He also said Tom Seaver took up two parking spaces, to which Kranepool says, not true.

It was a funny segment that was aired on Saturday Night Live on April 4th, 1979. Other Mets visible in the clip are Joel Youngblood, Bruce Boisclair, Dan Norman, Pat Zachary & pitching coach Rube Walker.

"baseball been berry berry good... to me"

Mar 26, 2015

Mets All Star Pitcher: Matt Harvey (2012-2015)

Mathew Edward Harvey was born on March 27, 1989 in New London Connecticut & grew up in the seaport town of Mystic. The six foot four right hander attended Fitch Senior high School in New Groton Connecticut.

He was already a top pitcher in high school getting drafted by the Los Angeles Angels as a third round pick in 2007. He chose not to sign & attended college.

He then went to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he was pitcher three years for the Tar Heels.

In college he went 27-7 (10th all time in the school's history) with & 263 strikes (9th in the school's history) & a 3.73 ERA. In summer during his college days of '08 & '09 he pitched in the Cape Cod League, mostly in relief. By 2010 he was the New York Mets first round draft pick, the seventh pick overall in the MLB first year player draft.

In 2011 he pitched at A ball St. Lucie, going 8-2 with a 2.73 ERA. He won two FSL Player of the week Awards & made the All Star team. He was soon promoted to AA Binghamton, where he was 5-3 with a 4.52 ERA, he struck out 64 batters in 59 innings pitched. He earned a save in the MLB Futures Game for the USA, at Chase Field in Phoenix.

By 2012 he was voted the Mets number one prospect & #34 overall by That year he got an invitation to his first Spring Training but did not make the club going North. He pitched at AAA Buffalo going 7-5 with a 3.69 ERA, making the International League All Star Squad.

At first the Mets did not want to push him into the big leagues too fast, he spent more time at AAA than most number one picks. But eventually when Johan Santana went down with injury & the rest of the staff was struggling, Manager Terry Collins & GM Sandy Alderson decided the time was right to bring Harvey up.

Matt Harvey made his MLB debut wearing uniform #33 on July 26th at Arizona. He struck out the first batter he faced (Gerardo Parra) & totaled eleven K's in just 5.1 innings of work. He set a Mets franchise record for strike outs in a pitching debut. He allowed no runs in the Mets 3-1 win, earning his first career victory. At the plate he even got two hits, a double & a single going two for two. He became the first MLB pitcher since 1900 to have two hits & strike out ten or more batters in a pitching debut.

Quotes: After the game, Mets manager Terry Collins said: “I haven't seen 98 out of a starting pitcher in quite some time. He's lived up to exactly what everybody's talked about.”

In his next start he struck out seven batters in six innings, allowing two earned runs, but he took the loss to Tim Lincecum & the Giants in San Francisco. He took two more losses in early August, then on August 16th, he beat the Cincinnati Reds, pitching into the 8th inning allowing just one run on four hits with eight strike outs.

After a no decision he evened his record to 3-3 on August 29th with a win at Philadelphia. He continue to pitch well in September, but the poor Mets offense didn't help out, as he suffered two losses & a no decision.

On September 19th he allowed one run on one hit in seven innings, striking out seven Phillies but the Mets lost the game 3-2 at Citi Field. He finished the year after that start as the team felt he had reached an innings limit. In 2012 Harvey was 3-5 with 70 strike outs & 26 walks in 59 innings posting a 2.73 ERA in ten games.

Matt Harvey began the 2013 season with a lot of excitement surrounding him after a fantastic debut in 2012. He started the second game of the Mets season, against the San Diego Padres at Citi Field. Harvey struck out the first two batters he faced & allowed the only hit of his day in the 4th inning to Everth Cabrera.

Harvey went on to strike out ten Padres over seven innings, allow no runs on the one hit while walking two. The Mets came up big with eight runs, led by two run HRs from John Buck, Ike Davis & Lucas Duda.

His second start was in Philadelphia, a 7:05 start against Roy Halladay, in front of 35,000 fans at Citizens Bank Park. The Mets gave him support right away, as the hot John Buck blasted a three run HR in the 2nd inning & Lucas Duda had an RBI single in the 3rd. Harvey gave up a sac fly RBI to Ryan Howard, the only run he allowed on the day.

The Mets came back knocking out Halladay in the 5th, with four hits including a two run single from Ruben Tejada & an RBI single from David Wright. Harvey rolled along striking out seven Phillies through seven innings, one earned run, three hits & a pair of walks.

On Saturday April 13th, Harvey took the mound on a cold afternoon in Minnesota in front of 29,000 brave Minneapolis fans. Harvey may have been at his finest up to this point in his career on this cold day, flirting with a no hitter into the 7th inning.

Harvey had allowed just two walks into the seventh inning, when Justin Morneau blasted a HR down the right field line breaking up the no hitter.

Harvey earned his third win of the year, leading the NL in wins, allowing just one run on two hits while striking out six. Through his first three games he has struck out 25 batters in 22 innings, posting a 0.82 ERA.Harvey followed with his fourth straight win on April 19th, as he beat the Washington Nats 7-1 to get to 4-0. He threw seven strong innings, striking out sven batters allowing one run on four hits, while keeping his ERA belwo one (0.93).  

By now the comparisons were already being made to the start of the another great one time Mets pitcher; Nolan Ryan. Harvey was also being compared with Mets Hall of Famer Tom Seaver & Cy Young Winner; Dwight Gooden.

On May 7th, Harvey, Matt Harvey took a no hitter into the 7th inning, when the Chicago White Sox; Alex Rios reached on an infield single to short. Harvey was outstanding, striking out a season high (up t that point) 12 batters, going nine innings allowing no runs, no walks & the one hit. Once again the Mets bats did not support Harvey, an issue that would occur all season. The Mets did pull out the 1-0 win in the bottom of the 10th on a Mike Baxter RBI single.

In his next start, Harvey suffered another no decision in a 3-2 Mets loss to the first place NL Central; Pittsburgh Pirates. In seven innings he allowed two runs on five hits. In his next start he held down the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field, to two runs going into the 8th inning.

He struck out six batters allowing five hits but also helped his own cause at the plate. In the top of the 7th, he singled off Edwin Jackson bringing in Rick Ankiel with what was the game winning run. He got his fifth win of the year going 5-0 with a 1.55 ERA.

On May 22nd, he got another no decision in a 7-4 Mets loss to the Reds, where he allowed four runs & struck out six in 6.1 innings of work. He still had an ERA under two at 1.93.

On May 28th he faced off against the AL New York club in his first subway series start. Harvey was spectacular, going eight innings, striking out ten batters for his fourth double digit strike out game. He allowed just one run on six hits & didn't walk anyone, while lowering his ERA under two, at 1.85. 

Now all of New York & more of the baseball world took notice at the new Mets start pitcher.  He earned no decision in the Mets win as the Mets scored two runs off Mariano Rivera with a Daniel Murphy double, a David Wright game tying hit & a Lucas Duda walk off base hit.

In June he began with those pesky Marlins in Miami who gave him some trouble. Over five innings they scattered ten hits, scoring four runs & giving Harvey a 5th inning exit. He earned no decision in the Mets 11-6 loss.

His next start came at Citi Field, where he faced off against Jose Fernandez. Harvey allowed just one run on six hits in seven innings of work, striking out six Marlins. The Mets only managed one run off Fernandez as well & then the bull pens came on, doing a fine job. The game went on for six hours & fifteen minutes before the Mets lost 2-1 in the 20th inning.

Matt Harvey & ex Girlfriend
SI Swimsuit Model- Ann Vyalitsyna
On June 13th Harvey went up against Adam Wainwright, the Mets nemesis from the 2006 NLCS. He was having a fine year himself & beat Harvey 2-1 earning his tenth win of the year (10-3).

On June 18th Harvey got the start in the first game of an exciting doubleheader for Mets fans. Not only was their star; Matt Harvey going but rookie Zack Wheeler was making his debut in his home state in the night cap. A John Buck HR led to a 4-3 Mets win, as Harvey went seven innings, striking out a season high 13 batters.

On June 23rd he earned his seventh win, it came at Philadelphia in an 8-0 Mets romp over the Phillies. Harvey went six innings, allowing no runs on just two hits with six strike outs. His next start came at home against the Washington Nats who were struggling. 

The Mets gave him no support, as they lost 6-4 with Harvey earning no decision. In the game he went seven innings allowing just one run on three hits while striking out eleven. It was his 5th double digit strike out game.

On July 3rd Harvey took a loss to the Arizona D-backs at Citi Field, allowing the most earned runs in any game he pitched all season, with five. He did strike out nine batters but also allowed nine hits in six innings. It was his second loss of the year (7-2).

On Monday July 8th, Harvey would start another Mets extra inning game. This one they would win 4-3 in 16 innings after five & a half hours of play in San Francisco. Anthony Recker reached on an error allowing Eric Young Jr. to score in the top of the 16th.

From there it was onto the All Star Game, as Matt Harvey got the start for the National League at Citi Field in New York. It was a glorious day for Mets fans, as Harvey was announced & later took the mound. This same night, the greatest Met of All Time; Tom Seaver tossed out a ceremonial first pitch to another Mets starting All Star legend; David Wright.

Harvey was shaky at first, allowing a lead off double to New Jersey born Mike Trout & hitting Robinson Cano with a pitch.  He then got 2012 Triple Crown Winner Mquel Cabrera to strike out.  Baltimore's HR leader Chris Davis flew out & Juan Bautista also went down swinging. The Citi Field crowd gave him a standing ovation. Harvey came out in the second inning and retired all three batters in a row; David Ortiz, Ada Jones (strike out) & Joey Mauer. Harvey's All Star line was two innings, no runs, one hit & two strike outs with one hit by pitch.

It was back to regular season business on July 21st, as Matt Harvey faced off against Cliff Lee & the Phillies at Citi Field. This night the Mets supported Harvey with 1st inning HRs by David Wright & Marlon Byrd. It was 5-0 when Harvey exited after seven innings of three hit shut out ball. He notched his sixth double digit strikeout game as well with ten., while besting his record to 8-2.

On July 26th, Harvey pitched another outstanding game, allowing just one run & five hits in eight innings of work in Washington D.C. The Mets ended up being held down to one run by Ross Ohlendorf through seven innings. In the bottom of the 9th, Ryan Zimmerman blasted a walk off HR off Latroy Hawkins, filling in for the injured Bobby Parnell.

On August 1st, the Marlins handed him his third loss, two coming from them alone. It was a 3-0 shut out from Tom Kohler (six innings) A.J. Ramos (two innings) & Steve Cishek (one inning).

On August 7th, Matt Harvey had another one of his finest days of his young career. He pitched his first complete game, a four hit shut out at Citi Field, over the Colorado Rockies. He struck out six & walked nobody in the 5-0 win, which turned out to probably be his last win of the season.

By mid August, we can now see where Harvey began to struggle, possibly due to the trouble in his elbow. He said he felt a bit of discomfort there as any pitcher has felt at points during a season. On August 13th, in Los Angles he allowed four runs & eight hits to an incredibly hot Dodgers team that beat New York 4-2, behind the pitching of Hyun-jin Ryu.

His next start was in San Diego, he had decent outing but allowed two runs on six hits which was not enough, since the Mets supplied little offense again. The bullpen also faltered, as Will Venable hit a walk off HR off Pedro Feliciano.

On August 24th, it was the first time in MLB history that the two starting pitchers of that years All Star Game went head to head in the same season. NL's Matt Harvey went up against the AL's Matt Scherzer.

The elbow was most likely an issue, as Harvey allowed just two runs, but a career thirteen hits to the Detroit Tigers. He was the losing pitcher in Scherzer's 3-0 FOX Game of the week telecast.

It turned out to be Harvey's last start of 2013, as it was discovered he has a slight tear in his UCL in his pitching elbow.

 Matt Harvey gave Mets fans a great season
Harvey was leading the league in strike outs with 191 when he went down for the season. He went 9-5 with a 2.27 ERA (third in the NL) while allowing the fewest HRs per nine innings (0.353).

He had one complete game, pitching in 178 innings in 26 starts & walked just 31 batters. He averaged 9.6 strike outs per nine innings (3rd in the NL). He averaged 1.5 walks per nine innings (4th best) & he was second in the NL with 0.931 walks & hits per nine innings.

At first Harvey said he would not get surgery & opted for rehab. Then on October 4th, he said he would have Tommy John surgery to repair his right elbow & would miss the entire 2014 season. It was a devastating blow to Mets fans who were hoping it would be Harvey that would change the organization around like Seaver & Gooden did in the past.

That would now have to wait one more season. On October 22, 2013 Harvey had the successful surgery done by Dr. James Andrews. By Spring 2014 he was told he could toss a ball around but would still miss 2014.

Quotes: Harvey at Spring Training 2014 "Dr. Altchek said everything was fine and basically that I can start throwing. That was obviously good news for me. Since it is four months out, the process is going to be slow. I have to not push things. He just wanted to make sure I knew that and I was clear with that. Obviously we're not going to push things early. But, for me, being able to wear my glove and pick up a ball again is a good sign."

Harvey did not pitch in 2014 as the organization felt it was better for him to wait, so he'd be stronger by Spring 2015. At the last week of February during Spring Training 2015, Harvey threw for the first time to live batters. He threw 40 pitchers to live batters but they did not swing. 

Quotes: Matt Harvey- It was awesome, Obviously throwing a bullpen on the '10-pack' with nine other guys is a different feeling than facing basically our 'Core Four,' or whatever you call it. You step in the box and you have David in there, it's a good feeling to have that and be back. I couldn't feel better. It was a good day. 

The biggest thing today is getting used to having somebody in there and getting that feel of somebody standing in the box. Obviously them not swinging, you don't quite get all the feel of what you need to work on or exactly what is working at the time and what isn't."

Trivia: In 2013 Harvey posed nude for ESPN's fifth annual body issue. 

Harvey was dating Russian swimsuit mode Anne Vyalitsyna, but the two split up in Feb. 2014. They had been seen around New York City at various events (as well as in Russia) quite often during their time together. Harvey was seen around New York with model Shannon Rusbuldt last summer as well.

Harvey has earned the nickname: "The Dark Knight of Gotham" as well as "the Real Deal".

Early Seventies Mets Reserve Catcher: Bill Sudakis (1972)

William Paul Sudakis was born on March 27, 1946 in Joliet, Illinois. The six foot one switch hitter, was nicknamed “Suds” getting signed by the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1964 as an amateur free agent. 

Suds was originally known as a power hitting third baseman as he began his pro career, belting out 23 HRs at A ball Santa Barbara in 1966. In 1968 he was the Texas league co-MVP along with Jim Spencer, batting .298 with 16 HRs & 75 RBIs.

He got called up to the Dodgers making his MLB debut in September1968. In his first career game he hit a HR off the Phillies Dick Hall in the 8th inning of a 10-9 Dodger win. That rookie year he led the club in slugging percentage (471%), with three HRs & nine extra base hits in only 87 at bats. 

In 1969 he was named the Dodgers regular third baseman playing in 132 games batting .294 with 17 doubles five triples & 53 RBIs. He hit 14 HRs for two straight seasons coming in second on the team to Andy Kosco in 1969. He also had 17 doubles with 53 RBIs while batting .234. At third he made 21 errors in 391 chances for a .946 on base %. In 1970 along with his 14 HRs (second to Billy Grabarkewitz) he batted .264 with 44 RBIs, drawing 35 walks giving him a .352 on base %. At third base he improved to a .983 % making 14 errors in 178 chances.

For the 1971 season the Dodgers acquired Dick Allen to play third base, Allen hit .295 with 23 HRs & 90 RBIs. In the meantime a young future star named Steve Garvey, who was originally a third baseman, was on the horizon in the Dodger organization. 

The team tried to convert Suds to a catcher, but bad knees and a .193 batting average got him put on waivers by Spring Training 1972.

The New York Mets picked him up, and sent him to their AA Memphis farm club. Although he only hit .167, he came up to the big league club that July making his Met debut at Shea Stadium on July 11th playing at first base He drew a walk in four at bats that night & got a his first Mets hit the next day. 

He played first base in his first seven Mets games & then was sent back down to the minors through the month of August. He was used as a pinch hitter going 1-7 in the first half of September. On September 22nd, he hit a HR in his first start at catcher, driving in three of the four runs in a 5-4 loss to the Phillies. He closed out the season catching the final three games of the year, getting three hits.

In 18 games as a New York Met he hit .143 with one HR & seven RBIs. In that short time as a Met, Sudakis appeared on both a 1972 & 1973 Topps baseball card as a Mets player.

With the birth of the Designated hitter in 1973, he was traded to the Texas Rangers for Bill McNulty who never played a game for the Mets. Suds hit a career high 15 HRs in Texas, batting .255 in 82 games that year. In the off season he was traded to the A.L. New York club for future Mets closer Skip Lockwood.

In New York, he used to mimic the teams manager Bill Virdon who would try to flex his muscles while addressing the team. Sudakis who had pretty big arms himself, would stand behind Virdon & flex himself to the delight of his team mates. 

He also got into a famous fight with team mate Rick Dempsey at a hotel in Milwaukee in front of a bunch of surprised hotel guests. NY outfielder Outfielder Bobby Murcer, broke his finger trying to break up the fight between the two.

Over the next two seasons he would play in New York, California & Cleveland before the knee injuries cut his career short.

Sudakis' MLB career ended in 1975 at age 30, batting .234 lifetime with 362 hits 59 HRs 214 RBIs & 56 doubles.

Short Time Brooklyn Born Mets Third Baseman: Ted Schreiber (1963)

Theodore Henry Schreiber was born on July 11th 1938 in Brooklyn, New York. He attended James Madison High School, & the five foot eleven infielder then attended St. Johns University.

In 1959 he was signed as an amateur free agent by the Boston Red Sox. When he first arrived to his locker, veteran Jim Piersal said to him "get every dollar you can get out of 'em kid". Schreiber had an on going feud with his minor league manager Johnny Pesky & his days were numbered.

In 1962 he was scooped up by the Mets in the Rule V draft & spent three years mostly playing at AAA Buffalo. He was not a favorite of Casey Stengel but was rather chosen by GM Johnny Murphy.

On April 14th, 1963 he got a chance in the majors, playing for manager Casey Stengel. He debuted as the tenth third baseman in Mets history, batting leadoff & wearing uniform #43. He got his first career hit that day as well, in a 1-0 ten inning ,ets loss to the Milwaukee Braves. He got three hits in the month but was sent to the minors at the end of April. He returned in late July & remained with the club for the rest of the season.

He hit just .160 (8-50) with two RBIs & no extra base hits, playing in 39 games. It was his only big league season.

In his next to last career at bat, he grounded into a double play & made the final out in the Polo Grounds. The Mets lost to the Philadelphia Phillies 5-1 that day. Schreiber got one more at bat on the final road trip & had four appearances as a defensive replacement.

Retirement: After baseball he became a long time school teacher in Brooklyn.

Mar 25, 2015

Hall of Fame Pitcher: Tom Glavine (The Mets Years: 2003-2008)

Thomas Michael Glavine was born on March 25th, 1966 in Concord, Massachusetts. The six foot left handed pitcher was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in January of 2014.

He was the winningest pitcher of the 1990's, a two time Cy Young Award winner, a five time twenty game winner, a five time NL Pennant winner, an eight time All Star & onetime World Series champion. Glavine was also a long time Player Union Representative since 1991 replacing the Braves Dale Murphy in the position.

Glavine was an excellent control pitcher, with the ability to fool hitters by changing speeds & location of his pitches often during an at bat. He was also a good hitting pitcher with a career .186 batting average, one HR 25 doubles, two triples, 93 runs scored & 90 RBIs. After falling off in the second part of the 2002 season & losing two games in the post season, the Braves refused to offer Glavine the extra year he wanted in his contract.

Fred Wilpon pampered Glavine & his wife around New York & offered him a four year 42.5 million dollar deal to come to New York. All of a sudden the former Mets rival was now a team mate & the fans had to root for him.

The calm soft spoken Glavine came to New York, making his Mets debut wearing uniform #47, on Opening Day 2003 at a cold windy Shea Stadium game against the Chicago Cubs. There was a lot of excitement in the air but it didn't go that well. Glavine walked the lead off batter & gave up three straight hits, it was 2-0 before the first out & 4-0 by the end of the first inning. The Mets lost 15-2 that day with Glavine taking the loss. centerfieldmaz was there.

His next outing was better, he allowed one run over five innings as New York beat the Montreal Expos 3-1 for his first Mets win. Glavine won his next two starts as well, including a seven inning , three run outing to beat the Florida Marlins on April 20th. In May he had a strong outing in San Francisco, going into the 9th inning allowing just one run, as the Mets beat the Giants 5-1.

On May 24th he returned to Atlanta wearing a Mets uniform, receiving mixed reviews from the crowd. Mostly they were appreciative of his years of service & winning efforts with the Braves. He pitched his heart out that day, but was knocked out in the 4th inning after serving up six runs, taking another loss. From there he lost five straight decisions, eight of nine & was at 6-11 at the start of August.

On September 19th he served up the first & only grand slam of his career, to Jose Vidro in a loss to the EXpos. It was clear the Mets were going nowhere this year as they finished 66-95 last in the NL East. Glavine went 3-3 the final two months finishing up a disappointing 9-14 with a 4.52 ERA in 32 starts.

He improved a bit in 2004, starting out the season by beating his old Braves team mates in Atlanta, with a two run two hit, six inning performance. He earned win #2 in Montreal later that week, with a one run seven inning outing to beat the Expos 4-1.

On April 16th he shut out the Pirates over seven innings but got no decision after the bullpen (Orber Moreno, Mike Stanton & David Weathers) allowed seven runs in the 8th inning, blowing his shut out.

On May 23rd, Glavine threw a spectacular one hitter at Shea Stadium, to beat the Colorado Rockies 4-0. He struck out a season high eight batters while walking only one. He bested his record to 6-2 was named to the All Star team in a Mets uniform & things were looking good. Then he was involved in a taxi cab car accident, getting slightly injured while losing his front tooth. He was shaken up off the field & on the field his second half went downhill.

Unfortunately he would win just five more games all year & lose twelve. At the end of June into early July he lost five straight games, while giving up four runs or more three times in a row.

He closed out August with a six inning one run victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers on August 27th. He also closed out the season on October 3rd, with another one run six inning performance, this time beating the Montreal Expos.

The Mets finished the year in fourth place & the Art Howe era came to an end. Glavine went 11-14 with a 3.60 ERA, striking out 109 batters while walking 70 in 212 innings pitched (tenth most in the NL) over 33 starts.

In 2005 the Mets showed much improvement going into the season, some of the credit goes to Mets pitching coach Rick Peterson who suggested he pitch more inside & use a curve ball more often. The new manager was Willie Randolph & the GM Omar Minaya landed Pedro Martinez as the new ace of the staff as well as star outfielder Carlos Beltran.

Pedro began the year as the Opening Day starter & Glavine pitched the second game of the year, getting knocked out by after four innings, taking a 9-5 loss to the Reds in Cincinnati. After starting out 0-2, he pitched a strong game on April 22nd against the Washington Nationals. Glavine went seven innings allowing just one run on two hits, striking out seven batters.

On April 27th the Braves came to town & beat Glavine once again, knocking him out in the 5th inning after he served up seven runs including HRs to Andru Jones & William Betemit. In May when the Mets went to Atlanta, the Braves beat Glavine again, although he did pitch into the 7th inning before giving up four runs. By the All Star break he was 6-7 & then beat the Nationals again to get to the .500 mark. He remained at .500 the rest of the year until mid September when he dropped to 10-13.

But he finished strong, starting out with a complete game win over the Braves at Shea Stadium, for a 4-1 six hit victory.

On September 24th he pitched eight innings in Washington, allowing just two runs to beat the Nats 5-2. Glavine closed out the year with another complete game, the second in two weeks & earned the Pitcher of the Month Award. This time he shut out the Colorado Rockies at Shea, with a spectacular two hitter, striking out a season high eleven batters.

Glavine finished out the year at 13-13 with a 3.53 ERA (both second to Pedro Martinez) striking out 105 batters & walking 61 in 211 innings of work in 33 starts. That season he was a spokesperson for Volunteers of Americas: Operation Backpack, helping homeless children as well as Katrina victims.

2006 started with lots of excitement as the team had acquired Carlos Delgado, Paul Loduca, Jose Valentin & Xavier Nady in the off season. It proved to be the best year for the Mets since 2000 as they won the N.L. Eastern crown, staying on top of the pack all year long.

With Pedro Martinez sidelined, Glavine got the Opening Day start. He out dueled the Nationals; Livan Hernandez for 3-2 victory. Glavine went six innings allowing just one run on six scattered hits. On April 14th he beat the Milwaukee Brewers & then suffered a tough loss on his next start.

On April 19th, he pitched eight innings against the Atlanta Braves, allowing just one earned run but lost to Tim Hudson who threw a complete game 2-1 win. On April 29th in Atlanta, Glavine threw another gem; he went out & shut out the Braves for seven innings, beating John Thomson 1-0. Paul Loduca's solo HR was the only run of the game.

From that point on the Mets & Glavine caught fire. Glavine won six straight games through May & nine straight decisions into July. On May 4th he shut out the Pittsburgh Pirates for seven innings, as he went into stretch of throwing 17 straight scoreless innings over three games.

On May 21st, he beat the A.L. New York team in the subway series, helped out by back to back HRs by David Wright & Carlos Delgado. On May 27th he went into the 8th inning in Florida, allowing three runs in the 7-4 victory.

A month later on June 23rd, he pitched a seven inning one run game in Toronto beating the Blue Jays 11-2 in inter-league play. In July he had three outings were he allowed five runs or more & was just 1-4 through the summer months of July & August.

He had a big scare that August when he felt coldness in his left ring finger & was tested for a possible dangerous blod clot. The results were negative & he was back to work for September.

On September 18th the Mets clinched their first NL East title in 18 years, the next night Glavine beat the Marlins with an eight inning two run performance. On September 30th he closed out the year with a win in Washington, giving him his 15th win of the year.

It was Glavine's best year as a Met, as he tied with Steve Trachsel for most wins on the club, went 15-7 (2nd most wins in the NL, tied with five other pitchers) with 131 strike outs (all his Mets bests) posting a 3.82 ERA in 198 innings over 32 starts. He became the first Mets left hander in thirty years to make thirty or more starts in four consecutive seasons.

Post Season: Glavine got the start in Game #2 of the NLDS against the Los Angeles Dodgers, at Shea Stadium (a game centerfieldmaz was in attendance at).

Glavine was in his usual post season form, throwing six innings of shut out ball, allowing just four hits, two walks & striking out two. He left with a 2-0 lead after Endy Chavez scored the first run, with a single, advancing on a wild pitch & Glavine force play, leading to a Jose Reyes ground out run.

Paul Loduca added a sac fly in the 5th as well. In the bottom of the 6th inning the Mets tacked on two more runs, with a Julio Franco ground out & a Jose Reyes single. Glavine got the win as the Mets went up two games to nothing, on their way to the sweep.

In the NLCS against the St. Louis Cardinals he got the start in the Game One Opener at Shea Stadium. Once again he stepped up & was spectacular; pitching seven shutout innings, allowing just four hits & two walks, striking out two. Carlos Beltran hit a two run HR providing the Mets with all they needed in the 2-0 win over Jeff Weaver.

With a depleted Mets pitching staff, missing Pedro Martinez & Orlando Hernandez, Glavine got the call for Game #5 in St. Louis, as well. Although the Mets scored first, the Cards struck. In the home 4th, Albert Pujols hit a HR off Glavine & Rafael Belliard singled home another run. Glavine allowed one more run before his exit in the 5th & was the losing pitcher. The Mets lost the game & the series in seven games, ending a heartbreaking series after a fine season.

Glavine felt good about the Mets chances in the next few years & signed a two year deal with them in hopes of winning another championship as well as winning his 300th game. He entered the 2007 season with 290 wins & the Mets were proud that he would accomplish this feat in a New York uniform.

In 2007 the Mets returned to carry out a mission to get to the World Series & avenge their NLCS lost from the previous year. It was a strong year but the team collapsed in the final month & lost a playoff berth on the last day of the season. Glavine got the Opening Day win in St. Louis, after the Mets saw the Cards raise their World Championship flag.

Christine Glavine
In his next start, his friend John Smoltz beat him in Atlanta. But Glavine was strong from their winning four straight decisions until the end of May. He then lost four straight decisions, including two inter league game walloping's by the Tigers in Detroit (nine runs in 4.1 innings) & the A.L. New York club (seven runs in 4 innings).

On June 22nd he pitched a strong one run eight inning performance against the Oakland A's at Shea Stadium. In his next start on June 27th, he shut out the Cardinals for six innings earning his seventh win of the year (7-5). On July 14th Glavine beat the Cincinnati Reds 2-1, as he out dueled Matt Beslisle. The Mets won the game as Lastings Milledge singled off Mike Stanton in the bottom of the 8th inning. Glavine rolled along with six straight wins into mid September.

300th Victory: The biggest win of his personal career came on August 5th at Wrigley Field in Chicago. On a nationally broadcast game, he pitched six & a third innings, allowing just two runs on six hits, exiting with a 5-1 lead.

He went on to get the win & become just the fifth left hander in history to win 300 games over the course of a fabulous career. He & his family were honored by the organization, as well as the media, at a post game press conference & festivities.

On September 30th he pitched his final game with the Mets. It was the Mets final game of the year & they needed the win to get to the playoffs after a disastrous week. The day before John Maine pitched the game of his life, flirting with a no hitter into the 8th inning giving the Mets life & a much needed win.

But in the last game, Glavine was shelled for seven runs in the first inning, as the Mets playoff hopes ended as did Glavines career in New York. Many felt he went out their lax & showed no emotion as well as no heart in the game. After a bad start to his Mets career to a promising playoff run, it now ended just as bad as it began.

In his five year Mets career; Glavine was 61-56 with a 3.41 ERA. He struck out 516 batters, walked 114 while pitching 1005 innings in 164 games.

He closed out his career in Atlanta going 2-4 in 13 games in 2008.

In his 22 year career Glavine won two Cy Young Awards, a TSN Pitcher of the Year Award & made ten All Star Games. He was 305-203 (21st in wins) with a 3.54 ERA. He has 2607 strike outs (24th all time) 1500 walks (12th most all time) in 4413 innings (30th all time) in 682 starts (12th all time). He has thrown 22 shut outs (173rd all time) & has 52 complete games.

Retirement: Since his playing days he has become a color analyst for Atlanta Braves games.

Honors: In 2010 the Braves retired his uniform #47 at Turner Field. In 2014 he was elected to Cooperstown into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Family: He & his second wife Christine have five children, they reside in Johns Creek, Georgia. tom coaches his sons baseball & hockey teams.

Glavine is a Catholic & has done a piece for Catholic Athletes for Christ. He has always been very active in charity work, from the Rally Foundation, to CURE to the Georgia Transplant Foundation.