Nov 27, 2017

Mets Third Base Coach: Glenn Sherlock (2017-2018)

Glenn Patrick Sherlock was born September 26th 1960 in Nahant, Massachusetts. The six foot left hand hitting catcher attended Rollins College at Winter Park Florida, earning a degree in Environmental studies. He was drafted in the 21st round of the 1983 draft by the Houston Astros. 

He spent seven years at all levels of the minors playing for Houston & the A.L. New York's teams organizations, while never making it to the big leagues. In 297 minor league career games he batted .250 with 7 HRs 26 doubles 216 hits & 99 RBIs. He retired in 1988 & began coaching two years later.

Retirement & Coaching Career: Sherlock began coaching in the A.L. New York's team organization as a manager in the Rookie league & A ball levels. He served ten years in their organization, also serving as their bull pen coach for three seasons. 

Sherlock moved to the Arizona Diamondbacks in their inaugural season and would remain there for 16 seasons, the longest tenure of any of their coaches.

He was their bull pen & catching coach in their 2001 Championship season (1998-2002), bench coach (2003 / 2015-2016) & third base coach (2004 / 2014).

He signed on with the Mets starting the 2016 season replacing Tim Teufel as their third base coach & catching instructor. He is one of few coaches returning in 2017.

Family: He & his wife Lisa have a son & daughter. His son Tim played in the Diamondbacks minor leagues for two seasons.

Nov 26, 2017

2017 Mets Relief Pitcher: Chasen Bradford (2017)

Chasen David Bradford was born on August 5th 1989 in Las Vegas Nevada. The six foot one right hander attended Junior College at Southern Nevada & two years at University of Central Florida. Ne was drafted by the Mets in the 35th round of the 2011 MLB draft.

A career reliever, he went 9-3 with a 2.61 ERA at A ball & AA combined in 2013. In 2014 he posted 11 saves in 23 appearances overall, first at AA Binghamton, then was promoted to AAA Las Vegas where he grew up, and saved five more.

He pitched the next two seasons at Vegas & posted an ERA a bit over for which isn't bad at such a hitters friendly park the 51's play in. He combined with other relievers in the closer role & notched 12 saves in the two years. Most of his outs come on ground balls due to his sinker & slider.

He began 2017 at Las Vegas & was called up to help an ailing Mets bullpen, making his debut on June 25th in an 8-2 win at San Francisco over the Giants. He finished the game, struck out two & allowed one hit.

He got to finish off an 8-0 shut out in Miami three days later. He had two rough outings in July & was sent back down until the start of August.

In his first game back he
pitched two innings of a 10-5 win at Colorado & earned his first career victory. He pitched well through August not allowing a run but was shelled on August 29th giving up seven runs (four earned) on six hits not recording any outs against the Cincinnati Reds in a 14-4 Met loss.

He rebounded well, in ten September outing he only allowed runs in one game. On September 22nd, he pitched a scoreless 6th inning against the Nationals & earned his second win. On the year he was 2-0 with three holds, 27 strike outs, 13 walks & a 3.74 ERA in 33.2 innings in 28 appearances.

Family: Bradford's father, two uncles & currently his brother have all served in the military. Bradford says he also intends to do some time in the service after his baseball career.

"The flag will always hold a special place in my heart, It's given me plenty of opportunities and I know the sacrifices people have made for it."

2006 NL Eastern Champion Mets Utility Player & Current Dodgers Coach: Chris Woodward (2005-2006)

Christopher Michael Woodward was born on June 27, 1976 in Covina, California. The scrappy player was drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays in 1994 way down in the 54th round. He was primarily a short stop in the minor leagues, after five seasons there he batted .292 at AAA Syracuse in 1999.

The six foot right handed hitting Woodward, got a call up in 1999 making his MLB debut against the New York Mets in June 7th in an inter league game. He had a base hit & a sacrifice fly, driving in both Blue Jays runs in an 8-2 Mets win.

He would spend six years in Toronto as a utility infielder & designated hitter. He got into 90 games in 2002 batting .276 with career highs in HRs (13) triples (4) & RBIs (45).

The next year he got into 104 games enjoying career bests in hits (91) doubles (22) & walks (28) while batting .261. In 2004, Woodward made it to television, appearing in a TV episode of Degrassi: The Next Generation.

In 2005 he signed a two year contact as a free agent with the New York Mets. He would become manager Willie Randolph’s all around guy, playing every infield & out field position in 81 games with the 2005 Mets. 

Woodward debuted in the second game of the season as a defensive replacement for Doug Mientkiewicz. On April 23rd he started the game at short stop at Shea Stadium. He got two hits & his first two Mets RBIs in a game against the Washington Nationals.

In May he played in just nine games & the light hitting Woodward hit two HRs in those games. On July 19th he came up as a pinch hitter, in the bottom of the 11th inning in a 1-1 tie against the San Diego Padres. He had one of his finest Mets moments, hitting a walk off game winning HR, off pitcher Chris Hammond.

In August he had a three hit day on August 4th & in the middle of the month had a five game hit streak. On August 20th he once again came off the bench, for a game winning hit. This one was a pinch hit single against the Washington Nationals, capping off a 9-8 Mets win.

Overall Woodward hit a career high .283 (going 49-173) with three HRs, 10 doubles 16 runs scored a .337 on base % & 18 RBIs, having a fine season.

He returned in 2006 and drove in three runs, in his first start which was at Washington on April 13th. He homered the next week in a game against the Atlanta Braves, and drove in six runs in eight games played that month. He went 2-6 as a pinch hitter then saw some more steady playing time in June. He was batting .300 on June 11th after having three straight multiple hit games from June 6th- June 11th.

That July hit two HRs in a one week span in games at Shea Stadium & then Wrigley field in Chicago. He then suffered through some injuries & struggled both as a pinch hitter as well as in a starting role. The good natured positive Woodward kept his sense of humor throughout the slump.

He would finish up the 2006 season hitting just .216, but did contribute to the NL Eastern champion Mets. He matched his previous year's totals with three HRs & 10 doubles. He scored 25 runs & drove in 25 runs as well.

2006 Post Season: In Game #5 of the NLDS at Dodger Stadium, he got a pinch hit base hit & scored a run in the Mets victory.

The Mets did not resign him in 2007 & he went on to the rival Atlanta Braves.

There he played in over 90 games but hit just .199, the worst in the major leagues for any regular starting player. In 2008 he played in the Phillies & Brewers minor league organizations, signing with the Seatle Mariners at the end of the season.

He was placed on waivers & then got selected by the Boston Red Sox in August 2009. That season he played just 13 games with the Boston Red Sox batting .083.

In 2010 he was back in Seattle playing the majority of the season at AAA Tacoma batting .232 getting a call up for eight games with the Mariners batting .158.

In 2011 he signed with the Toronto Blue Jays playing in just 11 games. In his career Woodward batted .239 with 408 hits 87 doubles 14 triples 33 HRs 191 RBIs a .296 on base % & 209 runs scored. 

Retirement: In 2012 he officially retired, the next day he got a job as a coach in the Seattle Mariners organization. In just two years he got to the big league level as the Mariners infield coach in 2015 but opted not to return in 2016.

When Dave Roberts was named Manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers he named Woodward the Dodgers third base coach for 2016. Woodward returned in 2017 getting to the World Series with the NL Champion Dodgers.

In the off season he has interviewed for a managerial position with the AL New York club.

Woodward managed New Zealand in the World Baseball Classic qualifier in 2016.

Woodward met his wife Erin while playing in Toronto, Erin is an Ontario native. They now live in Arizona with their two sons & daughter.

Nov 24, 2017

New Mets Manager: Mickey Callaway (2018)

Michael Christopher Callaway was born May 13th, 1975 in Memphis, Tennessee. A star basketball & baseball player in Germantown High School at Memphis, Callaway was first drafted by the San Francisco Giants in 1993 but did not sign. He would then attend the University of Mississippi, pitching for the Ole Miss Rebels getting drafted by the Tampa Rays in 1996 as a seventh round pick.

Callaway made his MLB debut on June 12th 1999 in a start against the Expos in Montreal. He earned a win pitching six innings allowing two runs on seven hits with two strike outs. In his second start he was removed in the 1st inning after allowing three runs to the Twins in Minnesota. He would see limited time the rest of the year taking two more losses in just three more games pitched, finishing up 1-2 with a 7.25 ERA.

He was traded to the Anaheim Angels prior to their 2002 World Championship season. He became the clubs fifth starter when Aaron Seale went down with injury. He would go 2-1 in six appearances but did not pitch in the post season, although he did receive a World Series ring.

In 2003 he started out with the Angels going 1-3 getting released & picked up by the Texas Rangers. where he went 0-3. After four brief appearances in 2004, his MLB career was over. Overall he was 4-11 with a 6.27 ERA 86 strike outs & 58 walks over 130 innings in 40 games with 20 starts.

Callaway moved on to pitch in South Korea for the Hyundai Unicorns, in the KBP league, where was a two time All Star. He also pitched one year in an Independent League in Laredo, Texas.

In 2010 he began his career as a pitching coach, starting out in the Cleveland Indians organization. By 2013 he was with the Indians big league club, as the teams pitching coach under new manager Terry Francona. That year the Tribe won 92 games, fourth most in the AL, finishing up in second place with no wild card berth. 

In 2014 the team produced Cy Young winner, Corey Kluber as they won 83 games. In 2015 his Indians were first in strike outs, complete games & second in ERA (3.67) in the AL winning 84 games.

After three seasons of 83 or more wins, the 2016 Indians won 91 games and got to the post season, beating the Boston Red Sox in the ALDS, the Toronto Blue Jays in the ALCS, losing to the Chicago Cubs in seven games in the World Series.  

That year the Tribes pitching staff ranked first in strike outs (1398) second in wins, ERA (3.84) runs & earned runs, with all five starters winning in double digits as Kluber led the way with 18 victories. An incredible 108 win 2017 season had the Indians staff first in wins, ERA (3.30) strike outs (for the fourth straight year), complete games, shut outs, runs, walks, earned runs& curve ball usage. The staff boasted three pitchers (Kluber, Carlos Carrasco & Trevor Bauer) with 17 wins or more. Unfortunately they were upset early in ALDS.

Callaway has learned under some talented & respected managers including Francona, Mike Scioscia &  Buck Schowalter. His former pitchers rave about his coaching skills and his abilities as a coach, especially relating to the young players.
In the 2017 off season he was named the twenty first manager in Mets history, replacing Terry Collins. His pitching skills will hopefully help the New York Mets young pitchers who struggled though injuries & issues in 2017. But now as manager in the baseball worlds largest market, Callaway will wear many hats & have lots on his plate.

Quotes: Mets GM Sandy Alderson: "There seemed to be a real consistency between Mickey’s approach and our approach and what he was looking for in the way of managing, and what we were looking for in the way of a leader in the clubhouse. But more emotionally, I think all of us came out of that meeting excited about the possibility that Mickey would become our manager. That’s a visceral reaction not one that you can put down on a checklist, but to me that said everything."

Nov 23, 2017

Mid Seventies Mets Pitcxher: Tom Hall (1975-1976)

Thomas Edward Hall was born November 23, 1947 in Thomasville, North Carolina. He grew up in Riverside California, attending high school there a s a star player.

The six foot tall left handed pitcher was the Minnesota Twins third round pick in 1966. In 1967 at A ball Wisconsin, he went 14-5 which got him promoted the next year. In 1968 he was 10-4 overall at AA Charlotte & AAA Denver with an ERA under two. He was in the big leagues with the Twins by the end of the year.  

He was nicknamed “the blade” & went on to have some fine seasons in the early seventies. He was primarily a reliever for four years in Minnesota, posting winning records every year, with the exception of 1971. In 1969 he was 8-7 making 18 starts in 31 appearances for the AL Champs that had two twenty game winners in Jim Perry & Dave Boswell. He made one appearance in the ALCS loss to the Baltimore Orioles.

In 1970 he struck out 184 batters (8th most in the league) going 11-7 with four saves & a 2.55 ERA. By 1971 he was the Twins main reliever, leading the staff with nine saves, while posting a 4-7 record for the AL Western Champions. He pitched in two ALCS games against the Baltimore Orioles, taking the loss in Game #2 at home. In that game he served up a two run HR to Brooks Robinson & left the game behind 4-3. The Orioles went on to a 11-3 victory.

In December 1971 he was traded to the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for pitcher Wayne Granger. Hall was fantastic for the 1972 Big Red Machine, going 10-1 with eight saves and a 2.61 ERA out of their tough bull pen. Reds manager Sparky Anderson earned the name "Captain Hook" as he liked to remove pitchers quickly, which was something not done too often in those days.

From late May through the end of the season Hall was 8-0 with six saves & eight holds to his credit. He did not blow any games or take any losses. In the 1972 NLCS against the Pittsburgh Pirates, he got the win at Three Rivers Stadium in Game #2, pitching over four innings of one run relief.

In the 1972 World Series against the Oakland A's he made four appearances, earning a save in Game #6 which tied up the Series at three games apiece.  

Hall returned to go 8-5 with eight saves (third behind Clay Carroll & Pedro Borbon on the club) in 1973, getting to another post season with Cincinnati.

In the 1973 NLCS he made three appearances against the New York Mets getting no decisions. In Game #2 at Riverfront Stadium, he entered the game in 9th inning with the Reds behind 1-0. He gave up a single to Felix Millian, then a walk to Rusty Staub. Cleon Jones followed with a base hit to center field scoring Millan.

He would get charged with three runs before he was relieved by Pedro Borbon, in the Mets 5-0 win. That was the game Jon Matlack pitched a two hit shut out to even the Series. In Game #3 he allowed another run which ballooned his ERA up to a whopping 54.00.  

In April 1975 he was traded to the New York Mets for pitcher Mac Scarce. Hall made his Mets debut on April 16th in St. Louis, pitching two scoreless innings, finishing up a game with the Cardinals. On May 12th he earned a save against the San Francisco Giants preserving a win for Jon Matlack.

He got a rare start on June 4th & although he allowed three runs over five innings he still earned his first Mets win. Five days later he got another start, but he allowed five runs in four innings to the Atlanta Braves and was placed back in the bull pen. Over the last ten days in July, he earned three wins, two came in relief. The first was at home against Houston & the other on a road trip to Chicago.

On July 29th he got a start in St. Louis in the second game of a double header, although he gave up three runs the Mets supported him with eleven runs. Hall made 34 appearances for the third place '75 Mets, third most out of the bullpen, going 4-3 with one save. He would finish 15 games posting a 4.75 ERA. He struck out 48 batters in 60 innings pitched.  

In 1976 he earned a win on April 27th when John Milner & Bruce Boisclair drove in runs for a dramatic 9th inning finish. In his last Mets game, his former Reds team mates Ken Griffey & George Foster got him for two runs in the 11th inning for a loss. After just five appearances, posting a 5.75 ERA, he was traded to the Kansas City Royals for a minor leaguer. He finished up his career there the next season.  

In a ten year career, Hall was 52-33 with 32 saves and a 3.27 ERA. He struck out 797 batters walking 382 in 852 innings pitched. Hall made63 starts in 358 games with seven complete games & three shut outs. He was certainly an under rated pitcher, especially at a time when mid relievers got no recognition.  

Retirement: After baseball he began a career as a supervisor for Rohr Aeospace in 1978. After that he became a postman for twenty years in the Riverside California area he grew up in.

Hall was elected to the Riverside Hall of Fame in 2002. He enjoys bowling, fishing, traveling with his wife, & spending time grandchild.

Mid Nineties Mets Hitting Coach: Tommy McCraw (1992-1996)

Tommy Lee McCraw was born November 21, 1940 in Malvern, Arizona. His family moved to Southern California, and he attended high school in Venice Beach. He then attended Santa Monica Community College.

The speedy first baseman / outfielder got signed by the Chicago White Sox in 1960. In 1962 he won the AA batting title hitting .362 making the big leagues for good the next year. He came up with a lot of promise, as the Sox everyday first baseman right off the bat in his rookie year.

That season (1963) he hit .254 with 6 HRs 33 RBIs & 15 stolen bases. He hit .261 the next year which was his best in his playing years at Chicago. He stole 12 or more bases in each of first three seasons, then 20 or more over the next three years. In 1967 he hit a career best 11 HRs, with 45 RBIs batting .236 while stealing 24 bases (4th in the league).

On May 24th he hit three HRs in a game against the Minnesota Twins, he just missed a fourth sending a Jim Kaat pitch to the warning track. Also that month, he tied an MLB first base record, by committing three errors in one inning. That year he led AL first basemen in assists (93), double plays (103), total chances and errors (20). He was second in the league triples (12) tenth in steals (20) although he only batted .229.

He spent eight years in Chicago wearing the White Sox classic road powder blue road uniforms, before getting sent to the Washington Senators in 1971. That was the teams their last season in the nation’s capitol. He learned how to hit the ball with more force under the direction of Senators manager Ted Williams.

That May he was involved in a very strange play in a game against the Cleveland Indians. McGraw hit a routine infield popup, future Met, shortstop Jack Heidemann, outfielders John Lowenstein &Vada Pinson all ran after the ball & collided. The ball rolled away from the fielders & the speedy Mcraw rounded the bases for an inside the park HR.

He only hit .213 & made the last out in Senators history when he was caught stealing second base. McCraw was traded to Cleveland as the Washington franchise got to Texas. He hit .258 there but the journey man found himself at home in Anaheim, getting traded for Leo Cardenas in April 1973. He was the Angels first official designated hitter on Opening Day 1973, going 1-4 on that day. He was in the Angels line up on July 15th 1973, going 0-2 with a walk, playing right field when Nolan Ryan threw his second career no hitter.

In 99 games that season he batted .265 with 3 HRs. McCraw had his contract purchased by the Cleveland Indians in 1975, playing for the first African American manager; Frank Robinson. In that season, he & Robinson grew a bond that would last for many years.

McCraw finished his playing career there the next year, in 13 seasons McCraw hit .246 with 972 hits 143 stolen bases, 75 HRs, 150 doubles, 404 RBIs & a .309 on base % playing in 1468 games played.

Retirement: After his playing days he became a long time coach, with the help of the knowledge he had gained as a player under the tutoring of Hall of Famers; Ted Williams & Frank Robinson. McCraw would also serve as a hitting coach under Frank Robinson four different times.

In his career he coached: Cleveland (1975/ 1980-1982) Baltimore (1989-1991) Montreal (2002-2004) & the Nationals in (their first season 2005). He also coached in San Francisco (1983-1985) Houston (1997-2000) & with the New York Mets.

McCraw was the Mets hitting coach for four seasons from 1992-1996. He first served under his old Angels team mate manager Jeff Torborg, then Dallas Green finishing out the year when Bobby Valentine was hired. As for the disastrous 1993 season, McCraw said “The whole season was a long rerun”.

That year the club batted .248 (13th in the league) although they were 4th in HRs (158) & triples (37).The next year they were 13th in batting and fist in the league in striking out. There was improvement in 1995 as the club batted fifth in the NL (.267) & in 1996 the Mets were second in batting average (.270).

Nov 22, 2017

New Mets Pitching Coach: Dave Eiland (2018)

Dave Eiland was born on July 5th, 1966 in Dade City Florida. The six foot three right hander began his college career with the Florida Gators at the University of Florida. He then transferred & attended the University of South Florida at Tampa. The start pitcher was drafted in the seventh round of the 1987 draft by the A.L. New York club.

Eiland made his MLB debut in Milwaukee on August 3rd 1988 getting a start in a 6-5 loss to the Brewers. He pitched seven innings of three hit ball, allowing a run with no decision. In that game he made MLB history, serving up a HR to the first batter he faced, Hall of Famer Paul Molitor & then he himself hit a HR in his first career at bat. It was his only career HR in 22 career at bats.

Eiland would pitch between the minors & the majors for most seasons throughout his career. In 1990 he even won the International Pitcher of the Year Award while with the Columbus Clippers.

He would see limited action over the next four years with the A.L. New York club from 1988-1991 going 5-8 in that time. The journeyman pitcher would go the San Diego Padres (1992-1993) back to New York (1995) & then in Tampa with the Devil Rays from 1998-2000. 
Trivia: In 1998 Eiland acted as a double for actor Kevin Costner in the film For the Love Of The Game.

In a ten year career Eiland was 12-27 with a 5.74 ERA, striking out 153 batters while walking 118 in 373 innings of work in 92 appearances.

Retirement: After his playing days he began his coaching career, starting out in the AL New York clubs organization from 2000-2008. That year he replaced Ron Guidry as the teams pitching coach. In 2010 he took a brief leave of absence & was fired at the end of the year.

After a year in the Tampa organization, he landed the job as pitching coach with the Kansas City Royals. He would get to the World Series twice with his Royals staff under manager Ned Yost.

In 2014 his AL Champion staff was fourth in wins, ERA, runs & walks with the most saves in the AL, behind closer Greg Holland. In 2015 the World Champion Royals beat the NL Champion Mets in the World Series. That year Eiland's staff were first in wins, second in saves & HRs, third in ERA, runs & earned runs.

After two seasons of finishing .500 & lower, he was let go by the Royals. After the Mets named Mickey Calloway as their manager, Eiland got the job as Mets pitching coach, replacing Dan Warthen.

Quotes: “I’ve had other jobs, other opportunities in my career, but I’ve never been more excited than I am now. I don’t think I’ve ever been more ready for this position than I am now. I’m very much looking forward to it. I know the demands of New York. I know the expectations. I know the energy, the passion, and I’m looking forward to getting right back in the middle of that. I want to be held accountable for how this staff pitches. I want those responsibilities. I want those demands. I know how good it is to win there. That’s the driving force.”

Nov 20, 2017

Remembering Mets History (1973): Tug McGraw Earns A Save, Win & Game Winning Hit In A Twin Bill Sweep At Montreal

Friday September 7, 1973: Yogi Berra's Mets (67-73) were rolling along to a hot start in September, they came into tonight's game winning eight out of their last eleven games and found themselves just four games back of first place.

Gene Mauch's Expos (68-71) were just ahead of the Mets in that NL East race.
On a chilly evening at Montreal's Park Jarry, 24,167 fans came out to see the Mets lefty, Jon Matlack take the hill against former Met Steve Renko. It turned out to be a real pitching duel classic.

Starting Lineups


Wayne Garret led off the game with a HR, his 12th of the year. Renko settled in after that & pitched well allowing no other runs & six hits before giving way to Mike Marshall in the 7th inning.

Jon Matlack was pitching a shut out going to the 9th inning. He had allowed five hits & four walks clinging to the one run lead. In the 9th he got Ron Woods to strike out looking & then retired former Met Tim Foli on a fly ball. Then pinch hitters Pepe Mangual & Mike Jorgensen (another two time Met) both drew walks. It seemed he was out of gas, Manager Yogi Berra pulled Matlack for his relief specialist Tug McGraw who was finding his groove.

McGraw got former Met Ron Hunt to ground out to
  him to end the game. Matlack earned his 12th win, & Tug his 17th save of the year, his fourth in the last ten days.

Nightcap: This game made it a long night for base ball, lasting 4 1/2 hours. Combined with the first game, it made for over seven hours of baseball for the Montreal fans. The pitching matchup was Montreal's Mike Torrez hosting the Mets, Jerry Koosman.

Starting Lineups

In the 3rd, the Expos got the first run when Bob Bailey singled home Felipe Alou who had led off with a double. Torrez retired 12 Mets in a row into the 7th inning. With two outs, Jerry Grote reached on an error by second baseman Pepe Frias. Then Torrez lost his control he walked Don Hahn, Bud Harrelson and the Mets top pinch hitter Ken Boswell to tie it up at one.

Koos was relieved after six innings, one run, four hits, four walks & three strike outs. Reliever Harry Parker came on to pitch, he tossed three scoreless innings, allowing two hits, striking out three. Yogi Berra who always went with a hot hand, brought in Tug McGraw out of the pen in the 10th inning. The Expos Mike Marshall, one of the best relievers of the early to mid seventies, would pitch 8.1 innings of relief.

In the top of 15th, Jon Milner singled & Ed Kranepool doubled putting runners on second & third. Milner soon scored on Don Hahns sac fly to right field to make it 2-1. Bud Harrelson was then walked intentionally to get to McGraw. Marshall threw a wild pitch advancing the runners.

McGraw came through, helping himself to a win, he ripped a shot to right field scoring Milner & Kranepool. McGraw was thrown out trying to advance to second. The Mets had taken a 4-1 lead.

Tug McGraw came on in the bottom of the 15th,with one out allowed a base hit to Singleton & a walk to Foli. As the third in the trio of ex-Mets all who came over in the deal for Rusty Staub in 1972, Mike Jorgensen doubled bringing in both runs making it a 4-3 game.

Berra seen enough, even for him, he replaced McGraw with Ray Sadecki. Sadecki struck out Pepe Mangual & got Felipe Alou to fly out to center to end the game. It was Sadecki's first save of the year.

A tired Tug McGraw pitched 5.1 innings in relief earning himself the win. He allowed one run on four hits striking out six. He too allowed a lot of walks, four to add to the Mets total nine walks on the day. Tug had just earned a save hours earlier in the first game. The win his second in ten days to go along with the four saves, made for an interesting start to the month of September where he'd save ten games & go 3-0. A vital piece to the Mets winning the NL East in 1973 & getting to the World Series.
Quite a night for Tugger.

Nov 13, 2017

Short Time 2006 N.L. Eastern Champion Mets Outfielder: Xavier Nady (2006)

Xavier Clifford Nady was born on November 14, 1978 in Salinas, California. The six foot two right handed hitter was the Northern California, High School Player of the Year in his senior year. He was offered a deal with the St. Louis Cardinals but did not sign.

He attended the University of California at Berkley, setting a school slugging record there. He got chosen by the San Diego Padres in the second round of the 2000 draft. He became just the 18th player in history to go directly to the major leagues in 2001, but after one game was sent to the minors anyway. There he hit .302 with 26 HRs & 100 RBIs at A Ball Lake Elsinore, getting named the California League MVP. He went to AAA Portland in 2002 & hit 23 HRs with 80 RBIs. He suffered an injury & needed Tommy John surgery.

He returned to the big leagues in 2004 batting .267 but was sent back down again, then hit .330 with 22 HRs at the AAA level in Portland. In the outfield Nady is a fine defensive outfielder with a strong arm. His twelve outfield assists in 2003 were third best in the league.

In 2005 he made just two errors in 85 chances (.976%) in the outfield & also played 44 games at first base, posting a .986 fielding %. Nady hit .260 with 13 HRs 15 doubles & 43 RBIs in 124 games that season. In the NLDS he went 1-3 as a pinch hitter with two walks against the Cardinals.

With the arrival of Carlos Beltran in 2005, Mike Cameron had lost his Mets centerfield job & was not happy. For 2006 the Mets made the deal to exchange Cameron for Nady. He was a pleasant surprise for the 2006 Mets & quickly became a Shea Stadium favorite. The fans would cross their arms in an “X” in his honor as “X” marked the spot.

He debuted on Opening Day hitting two doubles & driving in a run in the Mets 3-2 win over the Washington Nationals. He delivered hitting a HR in his second Mets game the next day. He started off real hot & was batting .400 by mid April. On April 16th & 17th he hit HRs in consecutive games against the Milwaukee Brewers. At the end of the month he was batting .311 with six HRs & 11 RBIs as the Mets everyday right fielder.

On May 4th he drove in four runs in the first game of a double header against the Pittsburgh Pirates hitting his seventh HR. On May 30th he needed an emergency appendectomy & was placed on the 15-day disabled list, returning to the lineup by mid June. In his second game from returning he hit two HRs in a Shea home game against the Cincinnati Reds. His hitting dropped off after the hot start, but he was a solid all around player.

In June he had a nine game hit streak & hit safely in 15 of 17 games. In the outfield he had six assists in 70 outfield games as a Met posting a .980 fielding %.

In late July the Mets were in trouble, when Duaner Sanchez got into a car accident in Miami & was lost for the season. Mets GM Omar Minaya panicked & made a trade may have been the start of the downfall of that era’s team.

On July 31st 2006, Nady was traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates for Oliver Perez & Roberto Hernandez, who was to fill Sanchez’s role. Nady finished his Mets career with 14 HRs 15 doubles 40 RBIs & a .264 batting average in 75 games. In 2007 he hit .279 with 20 HRs 23 doubles 72 RBIs & a .330 on base %. In the outfield he posted a perfect .1000 fielding %, of course the best in the league.

In 2008 he was traded to the AL New York club at the end of July, for the final stretch. Overall with two teams he finished his season batting .305, with career bests in HRs (25) & RBIs (97).

He signed a one year deal but elbow problems led to yet another Tommy John surgery, ending his season after just seven games. In 2010 he signed with the Chicago Cubs hitting .256 with 6 HRs & 33 RBIs in119 games (317) at bats.

In 2011 he signed a one year deal with the Arizona Diamond Backs hitting .248 by mid August when an injury ended his season as well as any chance to play in the post season with the NL Western Champion Diamondbacks.

In 2012 Nady began the season with the NL Eastern champion Washington Nationals playing in 40 games but hit just .159. He was released at the end of July & then got picked up by the San Francisco Giants. In just 19 games he hit .240 and got to the post season.

Post Season: He went 0-5 in the NLDS against his former Nationals team mates. He did not appear in the NLCS or World Series.

In 2013 he played 53 games at AAA Colorado Springs batting .278. In his 11 year career, Nady batted .270 with 792 hits 101 HRs 158 doubles 406 RBIs & a .324 on base %.

Nov 10, 2017

Remebering Mets History: (1962) "Marvelous" Marv Throneberry's Two Summer Walk Off HRs

Saturday, July 7th 1962: Casey Stengel's Mets (23-57) hosted Johnny Keane's fourth place St. Louis Cardinals (45-38) in the first game of a double header at the Polo Grounds. 

 In the battle of pitchers named Jackson; the Mets sent Al Jackson to the mound against Larry Jackson. 

Starting Lineups

In the top of the 3rd, the Cards, Larry Jackson singled & Curt Flood reached on an infield error. Both runners advanced on a Julian Javier fly out. They then scored on Ken Boyer's base hit making it 2-0 St. Louis. The added another in the 6th on a Jimmy Schaffer hit.

St. Louis' Larry Jackson was pitching a shutout until the bottom of the 6th, when the Mets Sammy Taylor hit a solo HR making it a 2-1 game. 

In the home 7th, the Mets rallied, as Gil Hodges started it off with a one out single. Elio Chacon then walked & pinch hitter Frank Thomas singled bringing in Hodges. The Cards brought in Lindy McDaniel to pitch, facing Richie Ashburn. Ashburn hit a fly ball to left field, Chacon tagged & scored tying up the game. 

In the 9th inning, Curt Flood led off with a solo HR off new Mets pitcher; Ray Daviault. With the Cards leading 4-3, pitcher Curt Simmons gave up a lead off infield single to Joe Christopher. The Cards brought in Ernie Broglio to close out the game. He got Gil Hodges to fly out to left field for the first out. The next batter was Cahcon but Casey Stengel sent in Marv Throneberry to pinch hit. 

The legend of Marv Throneberry grew even bigger today, as Marvelous Marv came through with a walk off HR, winning the game for the Mets 5-4. There were not many wins for the '62 Mets, especially in walk off style. 

Tuesday August 21st, 1962: On this day a small crowd of just 4,184 came to the Polo Grounds to see Danny Murtaugh's fourth place Pittsburgh Pirates (72-53) take on Casey Stengel's Mets (31-95). Bob Moorhead went for New York & Harvey Haddix for Pittsburgh.

Starting Lineups

The Pirates Dick Stuart (future Met), the man known as Dr. Strange Glove for his horrific fielding, singled in the first two runs of the game, scoring Dick Groat & Bill Virdon. Pitcher Harvey Haddix added an RBI single to make it 3-0.

In the 4th Jim Hickman singled & Rick Herrscher doubled. Hot Rod Kanehl grounded out as Hickman scored. The Pirates went up 4-1 as Don Leppert homered off Ray Daviault.

In the bottom of the 9th, the Mets were down 4-1 & it looked like another loss. But the Polo Grounds gods helped the Mets on this day, Richie Ashburn singled & Joe Christopher walked.

The Pirates brought in Roy Face to close out the game. After striking out Charlie Neal looking, Felix Mantilla singled bringing in Ashburn. After slugger Frank Thomas flew out, Stengel brought in Marvelous Marv Throneberry to pinch hit for Jim Hickman.

Casey had a hunch & it worked, Throneberry took Roy Face deep over the right center field wall, giving the Mets a dramatic unbelievable 5-4 win.
 The legend of Marvelous Marv got even bigger.

Marv Throneberry was one of the first folk heroes for the New York Mets. The fans loved him, starting the "Marvelous Marv Fan Club" which reportedly had over 5000 members. They would wear shirts that read VRAM, which was Marv spelled backwards.

As the early Mets fans began to bring home made banners to the ball park, many were in Throneberry's honor. Mets manager Casey Stengel would  famously call them placards. One of Marvelous Marv's placards read "Cranberry Strawberry - We Love Throneberry"!

In 1962 Throneberry hit 16 HRs, second to Frank Thomas on the Mets team. He would bat .244 with 49 RBIs playing in 116 games.

After just 14 games in 1963 he was sent to the minors & eventually retired. In the early eighties he resurfaced as one of the stars in the classic Miller Lite commercials.