Sep 10, 2015

Long Tme Italian / American Mets Bullpen Catcher: Dave Racaniello (2001-2013)

Dave Racaniello was born on June 3rd, 1978 in Stamford Connecticut.

He attended Norwalk Community College as a team mate of Houston Astros pitcher; Erik Bedard. He also played baseball for the Central Connecticut State University team. He did not play in the major leagues nor the minor leagues.

Instead due to connections through a friend who's father knew Mets manager Bobby Valentine, also a Stamford resident, he got a job catching in the bullpen for the New York Mets. While attending a game, the bullpen was short of catchers, Valentine had known of his catchers experience & asked if he'd help out. The rest is history as he has now been with the organization for 12 years.

Racaniello has been a long time Mets bullpen catcher as well as bullpen coach. He warms up starters, relievers & shags fly balls when he's not pitching batting practice. He fills in as a runner during run down drills in Spring Training & as a batter when pitchers need to throw to a dummy batter.

Quotes: "I just try to keep my mouth shut and go about my business," Racaniello told the New Jersey Star Leger. "And be whatever help I can be. I think that's one of the biggest things for a guy in my position. I don't think I've ever said no to anything."

He is known to be one of All Star Mets third baseman; David Wrights best friends. At the 2013 All Star Game played at Citi Field, Racaniello pitched to Wright in the Home Run Derby the night before the actual game.

During Spring Training 2010, the Daily News reported that Racaniello biked all the way from New York to Port St. Lucie.

Being an avid sportsman, in 2012 he reached the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro along with Mets pitcher; R.A. Dickey & Colorado Rockies pitcher; Kevin Slowley.

The event raised money for a charity helping women in Mumbai who are at risk of being abused.

Trivia: Racaniello is reportedly the current reigning champ of eating the most cheese steaks in the visiting club house at Citizen's Bank Park in Philadelphia.

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