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Showing posts from March, 2015

Long Time New York Giants Pitcher: Dave Koslo (1941-1942/ 1946-1953)

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George Bernard Koslo was born on March 31, 1920 in Menasha, Wisconsin just outside of Milwaukee. The left hander was signed out of high school, making it to the big leagues in 1941 pitching in four games, posting a 1.90 ERA. He went 3-6 in 1942 before going off to serve in World War II from 1942 through 1945. He returned to the Giants rotation three seasons later to win 14 games (6th most in the NL). He also lead the league in losses (19) hits (251) earned runs allowed (107) as well as starts (35) while overall posting a decent 3.63 ERA. Koslo was also a work horse pitching in 265 innings on the year, while pitching 200 plus innings in three of the next four seasons. In 1947 he gave up Jackie Robinsons first career HR & served up 23 HRs to lead the league in that category. On the ’47 season he won 15 (15-10) posting a 4.39 ERA and once again allowed the most earned runs in the National league. Two years later he had his best season, leading the league in ERA (2.50) going 11-

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

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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

Early Nineties Mets Pitcher: Cory Lidle (1997)

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Cory Fulton Lidle was Born on March 22, 1972 in Hollywood, California. Lidle was a descendant of the inventor of the steamboat Robert Fulton, as reflected in his middle name. His brother Kevin, was a minor league catcher as well. The right handed Lidle was signed by the Minnesota Twins in 1990, and then released by 1993. From there his contract was purchased by the Minnesota Twins, where he pitched in their minor leagues though 1995. During the baseball strike of 1994, Lidle crossed the picket lines to pitch, therefore he was never able to join the Players Union. In January he was traded to the New York Mets for Kelly Stinnett. At AA Binghamton Liddle led the staff with 14 wins (14-10) 140 strike outs & a 3.38 ERA. He began 1997 at AA Norfolk going 4-2 that April before getting called up to the big league squad. Liddle made his MLB debut on May 8th, 1997 pitching in relief of Rick Reed at the Astrodome, in a 4-2 loss to the Houston Astros. Three days later, he would earn

1954 World Champion New York Giants Relief Pitcher: Marv Grissom (1946/ 1953-1958)

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Marvin Edward Grissom was born March 31, 1918 in Los Molinas, California. His older brother Lee Grissom was a left handed pitcher, mainly playing with the Cincinnati Reds (1934-1939) going 29-48 lifetime with seven saves & a 3.89 career ERA. Marv began to pitch on Sundays because his high school had no baseball team. He went off to World War II in 1941 & did four years of military service. There he pitched against a team managed by the New York Giants star Johnny Mize. Mize was impressed the six foot three right handed Grissom, especially his wicked curve ball. When he got back from the war he was asked by the Giants if any ball players had impressed him in the service, he recommended Grissom. He was signed and began pitching with the AAA Jersey City Giants going 4-10 in 1946. That season he got a brief call up for four games and went 0-2 before going back to the minors. He would go to the Pacific Coast League, then get drafted Rule V by the Detroit Tigers. He would appea

Brooklyn Born- 1999 New York Mets Wild Card Champion Utility Player: Shawon Dunston (1999)

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Shawon Donnell Dunston was born March 21, 1963 in Brooklyn, New York. He attended Thomas Jefferson High School in Brooklyn, the same school as Danny Kaye, Shelly Winters, Riddick Bowe & Grandpa Al Lewis had all gone too. Dunston was a slick fielding short stop with a strong throwing arm, getting drafted in the first round (the number one pick overall) for the Chicago Cubs in 1982. In the rookie league he batted .321 then moved up to A ball where he would bat .310 in the mid western league. He made the jump right through to AAA the next year & made his MLB debut in 1985. He would spend eleven years in Chicago making two All Star teams, working as a double play partner with Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg. In his first full season he led the NL in errors at short (32) while also leading in assists (465) & put outs (320). Two seasons later he stole 30 bases for the first time in his career. He would steal a career high 32 in 1997 (9th in the league) & steal 20 or more

Former Mets Pitcher : Josh Stinson (2011)

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Joshua Randall Stinson was born on March 14th, 1988 in Shreveport Louisiana. The big six foot four right hander was drafted by the New York Mets in the 37th round of the 2006 amateur draft. He struggled at Savannah in 2007 going 3-11 with a 4.86 ERA. He would bounce between there & A Ball St. Lucie the next two seasons.  In 2010 he improved to 9-3 at AA Binghamton although his 4.34 ERA was still a bit high. He got pushed up to AAA Buffalo where he was 2-2 in four games with a 2.57 ERA.  In 2011 he began the year at AA Binghamton going 4-3 with six saves in 27 games. He was moved up to AAA Buffalo back in a starting role going 3-7 with a 7.44 ERA. Stinson got a September call up to the Mets and debuted on September 2nd against the Nationals in Washington. He pitched the final two innings of a 7-3 Mets win, giving up no runs on two hits with two strike outs. Two days later he was credited with his first of three hold on the year. On September 6th in Florida Stinson got his f

Former Italian /American Umpire: Frank Pulli (1972-1999)

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Frank Victor Pulli was born on March 22, 1935 in Easton Pennsylvania. In high school he played baseball well as basket ball eventually turning to umpiring.  He began working games in the Mid West, Eastern & International Leagues in the sixties & early seventies. Pulli made it to the major leagues as a National League Umpire by 1972 using the number 14.    On April 8th, 1974 he was the first base umpire at Atlanta's Fulton County Stadium in the game where Hank Aaron broke the All Time HR record. Pulli would officiate sic NLCS Series: 1975 / 1979/ 1986/ 1991 / 1993 & 1997.  In the 1986 NLCS Pulli worked home plate at Shea Stadium in Game #3 where Lenny Dykstra hit a two run walk off HR to beat the Houston Astros & put New York up two games to one. Pulli would officiate four World Series: 1978 / 1983 / 1995 & 1990 where he was the crew chief.    In the 1978 World Series blew a major call in the 6th Inning of Game #5. The A.L. New York club's Lou Pine

Short Time Mets Pitcher With a Perfect Winning Percentage: Don Florence (1994)

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Donald Emery Florence was born on March 16, 1967 in Manchester, New Hampshire. The six foot  Italian / American lefthander was signed by the Boston Red Sox in 1987.  He pitched in the Sox minor leagues for seven years going 28-39 before being granted free agency in 1994. He was signed by New York Mets and pitched in 41 games at AAA Norfolk posting a strong 0.46 ERA going 0-1. Florence was called up that August debuting in Philadelphia on August 12th. Although he is forgotten by most fans, Don Florence posted a 3-0 record, with a perfect .1000 winning %. His three victories most amongst no losses is the best in Mets history. In his first win, which was his second career outing; he pitched one perfect inning between Bill Pulsipher and John Franco in Philadelphia. On August 28th he finished a game at Shea Stadium, getting credit for win #2 as the Mets scored three runs in the bottom of the 9th inning. He then notched his third & final win in San Francisco in September pitchin

2015 Mets Spring Training Player: Wilfredo Tovar (AA short stop)

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Wilfredo Jose Tovar was born on August 11th 1991 in Santa Teresa, Venezuela. The 5' 10 right hand hitting short stop was signed out of high school by the New York Mets in 2007. He began playing for the Mets in the Venezuelan Summer League for two years, landing with the Gulf Coast Mets in 2009. He had a busy 2009 starting out playing 18 games for the Brooklyn Cyclones where he batted .265. He was promoted to the Savannah Sand Gnats where he hit even better (.281) playing good defense. He finished out the year playing at A ball + St. Lucie for 30 more games. In 2011 he played a full season for the Sand Gnats (131 games) batting .251 with 2 HRs & 41 RBIs.  In 2012 he was back at St. Lucie batting .284 getting promoted to AA Binghamton. In 2013 he was invited to his Mets first Spring Training playing in nine games. He then was the Binghamton Mets main short stop playing 128 games posting a .981 fielding % while hitting .263. In late September he got a call up to the Me

2015 Mets Spring Training Player: Italian American Pitcher- Cory Mazzoni

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  Cory Mitchell Mazzoni was born October 19th 1989 in Evans City, Pennsylvania. The six foot one right hander, attended North Carolina State & was selected in the second round of the 2011 MLB amateur draft. He has a good fast ball in the mid nineties, a good slider & a great splitter if it's working as well as it did in 2014. Mazzoni's career began in 2011 as he pitched six games for Mets A ball Brooklyn Cyclones team. He won his first game there going 1-0 with a perfect 0.00 ERA, before moving on to the St. Lucie Mets where he went 1-1 in six games.  He began 2012 at A ball St. Lucie, where some of his team mates included future Mets pitchers: Jacob deGRom, Rafael Montero & Jenry Mejia. There he was 5-1 with a 3.25 ERA, getting a promotion to AA Binghamton going 5-5. Over the course of the year he reached 104 strike outs but allowed 154 hits. Mazzoni was invited to his first Mets Spring Training in 2013, he appeared in four games taking a win & a loss, p

2015 Mets Spring Training Player: Cesar Puello

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Cesar David Puello was born April 9th, 1991 in La Romana Dominican Republic. The six foot two right hand hitting outfielder was signed as an 18 year old by former Mets GM Omar Minaya. Puello was highly touted as a five tool prospect. Puello started out with the Rookie League Gulf Coast Mets in 2008 & then had a short season at Kingsport (49 games) in 2009. He was promoted to A ball Savannah in 2010 where he hit .292 & stole 45 bases.  In 2011 Puello played for the A ball St. Lucie Mets, he was second on the club with 10 HRs driving in 50 runs while batting .259. At the start of the 2011 season he was rated as the #77 prospect by Baseball America, the Mets liked his development & new GM Sandy Alderson protected his contract. The next season was cut short due to an oblique injury & a wrist injury as well. That year he hit .260 with 4 HRs 21 RBIs & 19 steals in 66 games. He stayed busy playing in the Arizona Fall League & Dominican Winter League.  The

2010 NL MVP- Italian / Canadian Player: Joey Votto (2007-2012)

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Joseph Daniel Votto was born on September 10, 1983 in Toronto’s Little Italy section of Ontario Canada. He was a strange kid in Canada more into basketball & baseball then the local favorite sport, hockey. He joked saying his parents broke laws by leaving him home alone as an 11 year old, after Joe Carter hit the HR winning the 1993 World Series for the hometown Blue Jays. They went downtown to celebrate with the other fans at Sky dome. His high school didn’t even have a baseball team, but Votto who was originally a catcher, got signed as a second round pick by the Cincinnati Reds in 2002. In the minor leagues his career began slowly, struggling against left handed pitching. In 2005 he played in the World Baseball classic for Team Canada. He hit .333 with 5 HRs & 16 RBIs. In 2006 he tore up the Southern League winning the MVP Award, The Reds Minor League Player of the Year Award & was names Baseball America’s #7 prospect. He was invited to Reds  Spring Training in

Three Time Giants World Series Pitcher: Jeff Tesreau (1912-1918)

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Charles Monroe Tesreau was born on March 5th, 1888 in Ironton, Missouri. Tesreau was a six foot two right handed pitcher, who started out pitching for a mining company before getting into pro ball. The tough pitcher earned the name Jeff after a boxer named Jim Jeffries of the times.   He was first signed by the St. Louis Browns but had his contract purchased by the New York Giants. At the time the NY Times wrote: "Tesreau has curves which bend like barrel hoops and speed like lightning. He's just the kind of a strong man McGraw has been looking for."  He joined the 1912 New York Giants NL pennant winning staff joining the likes of the Great Christy Mathewson (24 wins) & Rube Marquard (26 wins). He fit right into the Giants staff, winning 17 games (17-7) and leading the league in his rookie year in ERA; at 1.96. He also led the NL in hits per nine inning (6.5) & was third in winning % (.708%). He won the NL Pitching Award & came in 14th in the MVP voting a