Oct 31, 2018

Mets Player Who Set A Record Hitting Four HRs In His First Four MLB Games: Mike Jacobs (2005 / 2010)

Michael James Jacobs was born October 30, 1980 in Chula Vista California. 

The six foot three inch, left hand hitter, was originally selected by the New York Mets as a catcher in the 38th round of the 1999 draft. By 2003 he had developed into a power hitter (17 HRs) and won the Sterling Award as the Mets top prospect.

In 2004 he suffered a torn labrum while at AAA Norfolk and the next season learned how to play first base. In 2005 he hit 25 HRs with 93 RBIs at AA Binghamton, getting called up to the Mets in August, to replace Doug Mientkiewicz and help solve the first base problem.

He made his MLB debut on August 21st, in a game against the Washington Nationals. He became the fourth Met in history to homer in his first MLB at bat, bashing one off Esteban Loiza. Two days later during a four game sweep in Arizona, Jacobs homered again. The following day he hit two more HRs, both coming off Claudio Vargas in the Mets 14-1 win. In that game Jacobs set an MLB record hitting four HRs in his first four career games.

On September 25th the Mets entered the top of the 8th inning behind 4-3. In the inning David Wright homered to tie the game & two batters later Jacobs hit one as well, it turned out to be the winning run. In only 100 at bats that season Jacobs hit 11 HRs with 23 RBIs, a .310 batting average, and a .375 on base percentage.

He closed out the season with hopes of being the Mets first baseman of the future. There was a quick change of plans around Thanksgiving, when the Mets traded him along with Yusmeiro Petit and Grant Psomas to the Florida Marlins for Carlos Delgado.

In 2006 in Florida he hit 20 HRs with 37 doubles with 77 RBIs batting .262. He became one of the Marlins most popular young players.

Family: That year he got married in December and had twin daughters. Overall he & his wife have four daughters & reside in Chula Vista.

He played a few less games in 2007 (114) hitting 17 HRs with 27 doubles 54 RBIs & a .265 average. The free swinger struck out 101 times on the season.

In 2008 he played a career high 141 games and had his biggest year; 32 HRs 27 doubles & 93 RBIs but his average dropped to .247.

Marlins Religious Error: In an error of Religious beliefs, the Marlins has a Jewish heritage day & gave out t-shirts with Jacobs image on them. The only problem was, Jacobs is not Jewish. Jacobs took it all in stride.

The Marlins needed a closer and on October 31st, 2008, they traded Jacobs to the Kansas City Royals for Leo Nunez. He struggled defensively in KC, and found himself as the Royals DH. He batted a career low .228 with 132 strike outs, although he rebounded with 19 HRs 16 doubles & 61 RBIs in 2009.

In 2010 he signed a minor league deal with the New York Mets & found himself as the teams Opening Day first baseman when Daniel Murphy went down with injury. But by April 18th, he was batting .208 & was designated for assignment. In just seven games he went 5-24, with one HR & two RBIs.

While playing at AAA Buffalo he hit 15 HRs batting .260 with 57 RBIs. On July 30th he was traded to the Toronto Blues Jays for a player to be named later.

In 2011 he was playing at AAA Colorado Springs hitting 23 HRs, but after he came up positive for using a human growth hormone, he was released by the Rockies organization.

In 2013 he signed with the Arizona D-backs & after hitting 18 HRs was given another big league shot. He got into 13 games batting .208 but was granted free agency after the season.

In seven career seasons he batted .253 with 493 hits 100 HRs, 116 doubles, 312 RBIs & 492 strike outs in 1949 at bats in 569 games.

Retirement: After playing two years in the Mexican League, Jacobs played one year in Independent baseball for the Lancaster Barnstormers. In 2016 he became a minor league manager in the Miami Marlins organization.

Oct 30, 2018

New York Giants Hall Of Famer & The Last NL Player To Hit .400: Bill Terry (1923-1936)

William Harold Terry was born on October 30, 1898 in Atlanta, Georgia. "Memphis Bill"  as he was known, began his playing career as pitcher while he was still a teenager.

By 1922 the Toledo Mud Hens signed Terry & they converted to a full time first baseman. But his best asset was that he was a fantastic hitter.

That year in the minor leagues, he batted .377 with 15 HRs & was quickly brought up to the New York Giants MLB team by mid September.

The following season he was backup at first base to Giants Hall of Famer; George “High Pockets” Kelly, batting .239 with 5 HRs & 24 RBIs in 77 games. The '24 Giants won the pennant and faced the Washington Senators in the World Series.

1924 World Series: In Game #1 of the World Series, he got the start at first base, as "High Pockets" Kelly played outfield & second base. Terry had a big day, collecting three hits, including a 4th inning HR off "The Big Train" Walter Johnson in the Giants 4-3 win. 

He got two more hits the next game in the Giants 6-4 win at the Polo Grounds. Overall he batted .429 (6-14) in that Series with three walks, playing in five games.

By 1925 he was the Giants main first baseman, as the infield was switched around to accommodate Terry. With an injury to Henie Groh, the future Hall of Famer Frankie Frisch, was moved to the spot & "High Pockets " Kelly to second base. Terry hit .319, with a .374 on base % while driving in 70 runs. But the Giants finished second & he found himself a back up to Kelly once again in 1926, as the defense which suffered, was switched back to the way it was.

By the 1927 season, the Giants traded Kelly away, as well as Frankie Frisch. Terry became the teams main first baseman for the next decade. That year he had his breakout season, batting .326 (10th in the N.L.) with 20 HRs (4th in the NL) & 121 RBIs (5th in the NL). He scored 101 runs & had 189 hits with  32 doubles (all 7th best in the NL) & posted a .377 on base %.

In 1928 he would hit .326 again, drive in 101 runs, score 100 runs (8th in the NL) & post a .394 on base %, but the Giants finished second in the NL, just two games behind the St. Louis Cardinals.

In 1929 Terry hit .372 (4th in the NL) with 226 hits (4th in the NL) driving in 117 runs (9th in the NL) while blasting 39 doubles coming in the top ten in most offensive league categories. He finished third in the MVP voting. The Giants fell to third place that disappointing season.

But even better things were ahead for Terry & the Giants in the thirties.   In 1930 he had his best season, becoming the first player since Rogers Hornsby (1925) to bat over .400. Terry hit .401 & is still the last N.L. Player to accomplish this feat. Ted Williams is the only other player to have hit over .400 since Terry’s 1930 season.

Terry easily won the batting title, while leading the league in hits (254). That tied Lefty O'Douls 254, for a record of most hits in a single season, in the National League. Terry hit 23 HRs (8th in the league) with 39 doubles 15 triples (5th in the league) & 129 RBIs (5th in the league) winning the Sporting News MVP Award. Unfortunately the Giants finished third that season.

At first base he led the N.L. in put outs & assists posting a .990 fielding percentage. In his career he led first baseman in put outs & assists five times, as well as leading twice in fielding percentage & coming in runner up three more times.

In 1931 he led the league in triples (20) & runs scored (121) while coming in runner up for the batting title to the St. Louis Cardinals; Chick Hafey. Hafey beat out Terry in one of the closest batting races in history, a mere .0002 points.

Terry had another 200 plus hit season that year with 213 hits, as well as 112 RBIs. Terry would hit a career high 28 HRs in 1932 and bat .350 coming in runner up to Brooklyn's Lefty O'Doul (.368). That June he was named the New York Giants player manager, replacing legendary Hall of Famer; John McGraw who was ill & retired after managing the Giants for thirty years.

After a sixth place finish that season, Terry lead the Giants to another World Series title in 1933, as they defeated the Washington Senators in five games. Terry himself batted .322 but saw his power numbers fall to just 6 HRs & 58 RBIs.

Post Season: In the '33 World Series, he hit .273 (6-22) with a HR in Game #4 at Washington D.C. He would win another pennant as manager of the NY Giants in 1936 and bat .240 in that World Series. His power numbers certainly fell off after his .400 season, but he still batted over .310 every season, which was six more years.

In his career; Terry hit over .300 eleven times, while driving in over 100 runs six straight years. He had six seasons where he had 200 or more hits.

In his 14 year career he batted .341 (15th best all time) & in the modern era he would be ranked at tenth best. Terry had 2193 hits (182nd all time) in 6428 at bats.

He hit 154 HRs, 373 doubles (226th all time) with 112 triples (119th all time) & a .393 on base percentage (91st all time) . He scored 1120 runs (236th all time) in 1721 games played.

His defensive numbers are very impressive; playing 1579 games at first base (51st all time) making 1108 assists (34th all time) with 15972 put outs (35th all time) turning 1334 double plays (36th all time).

His range factor according to baseball reference is tenth best all time & he would have led the league in that department eight times.

If a Gold Glove Award had been issued the, speculation is Terry would have a few of them. The All Star Game didn't begin until he was 34 years old, but he still got into three of those.

Retirement: After his playing days, Terry remained the Giants manager. He won another pennant in 1937, but then never finished higher than third place.

He continued to manage the New York Giants until 1941, when his protégé & long time team mate; Hall of Famer Mel Ott, took over as the teams Player/ Manger.

After baseball he owned a car dealership & a minor league ball team in Jacksonville, Florida. Terry passed away in 1989 at the age 90.

Honors: Although he was popular with the Sports writer, he did not elected to the Hall of Fame until in 1954.

He had his Giants uniform #3, retired by the club in 1984. He was a nominee for Baseballs All Century team & was voted #59, in the Sporting News All Time Greatest Players.

Oct 28, 2018

Former Mets Relief Pitcher: Braden Looper (2004-2005)

Braden Laverne Looper was born October 28, 1974 in Weatherford, Oklahoma. He is one of the few Mets to be born in Oklahoma and one of very few players to have a middle name of Laverne. Looper was no dummy a smart student graduating in the National Honor Society. He was a scholar, as well as a four letter man in High school.

The six foot four right handed pitcher attended Wichita State, earning All American honors going to the College World Series and later getting elected to the Wichita Hall of Fame. In 1996 he was part of the bronze winning US Olympic baseball team in Atlanta.

The tall six foot five right hander was originally drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals in 1996 as a first round selection the third pick overall. Two years later he was traded to the Florida Marlins with Armando Almanza and Pablo Ozuna for Edgar Renteria. 

Looper debuted during the 200 season as a mid reliever in going 5-1, with 18 hold as the set up man to Antonio Alfonseca. He remained in that role before gradually earning the role of the Marlins closer toward the end of the 2002 season.

He originally took the role over from Vladimir Nunez, going 2-5 with 13 saves, posting a 3.14 ERA. In 2003 he had 28 saves (8th in the NL) with a 6-4 record finishing off 64 games, while posting a 3.68 ERA for the Marlins World Championship team. Toward the end of the season he lost his job to Ugeth Urbina who enjoyed a short lived success as a closer. 

2003 Post Season: Looper saw action in two games of the NLDS against the San Francisco Giants. He was the winning pitcher in Game #3 at Joe Robby Stadium in Florida. 

In Game #1 of the NLCS against the Chicago Cubs he earned the save, again seeing action in two series games.

2003 World Series: He appeared in four games of the 2003 World Series getting roughed up for four runs in 3.2 innings of work. 

After winning the World Series Championship in Florida he signed with the New York Mets for the 2004 season.

Looper debuted on Opening Day 2004 in the Mets 7-2 win in Atlanta against the Braves. In the month of April he had four saves and a perfect 0.00 ERA showing some promise. 

Overall Looper had as strong first half, gathering up 18 saves a 1.88 ERA while posting a 2-2 record by the All Star break. In the second half he took two losses & blew two saves through late August.

In September he saved five games, but took two losses & blew a save allowing four runs to the Phillies in one inning of work on September 11th. That would be his best career season in 2004 gathering up 29 saves (10th in the league) going 2-5 with a 2.70 ERA. He did blow five saves along the way & allowed five HRs in 83 appearances.

The following year although he saved 28 games but he blew a lot of save opportunities which is how he is remembered. It started on Opening day in Cincinnati when he entered the 9th with a 6-4 lead. He gave up a single then two consecutive HRs to Adam Dunn & Joe Randa, taking the 7-6 loss.

There was a collapse in a June Subway series match up where the Mets could have swept that AL team but Looper gave up two 9th inning runs. In August there was a nightmare game against the Washington Nationals where the Mets blew an eight run lead.

 Looper entered the 9th with a 8-6 lead but surrendered the tying runs as the Mets lost it in extra innings. The fans began to boo the hell out of him and he was doomed in New York. Any site of him would lead a chorus of boos and he became known as Braden Blooper.

To his credit that September it was learned he was pitching with a blown AC joint and required surgery. Looper an easy going nice guy took it all in stride and didn’t blame the injury for his pitching woes. The Mets didn’t sign him in 2006 and he went to the St. Louis Cardinals who went on to beat the Mets in the NLCS. 

2006 Post Season: Looper laughed off the greeting he got at Shea Stadium when he entered Game #1 in the 8th inning; he gave up two hits but no runs. 

In Game #6 (a game centerfieldmaz attended) us fans really let him have it in the 8th inning. After getting the first two outs, Michael Tucker & Jose Reyes both singled then stole bases.

Next the winning runs were driven in by catcher Paul Loduca, sending the series to a game seven. In three games he posted a 5.79 ERA allowing three runs on seven hits in 4.2 innings of work. In the World Series he appeared in three games against the Detroit Tigers.

The Cardinals made him a starter in 2007 and he won 12 games, going 12-12 with a 4.94 ERA striking out 108 batters in 199 innings. In 2008 he was 12-14 with a 4.16 ERA.

In 2009 he signed with the Milwaukee Brewers going 14-7 leading the NL in starts (34) but also gave up the most HRs (39) & earned runs (113). He did not pitch in 2010 & although he signed with the Chicago Cubs in 2011 he did not make the team.

Looper retired finishing off his 12 year career with a 72-65 record & 103 saves. In 670 games he pitched 1176 innings posting a 4.15 ERA allowing 132 HRs.

Oct 27, 2018

Mid Nineties Mets Utility Player: Tim Bogar (1993-1996)

Timothy Paul Bogar was born October 28, 1966 in Indianapolis, Indiana. He attended East Illinois University getting drafted by the New York Mets in the 8th round of the 1987 draft.

He spent six years in the minors having his best year at A ball Columbia in 1988 batting .282. Bogar was a member of the last AAA Tidewater Tides team before they moved over to Norfolk.

He was one of the teams top hitters batting .279 behind Jeff McNight (.307) Chris Donnels (.301) & Steve Springer (.290) . Bogar made the Mets in 1993 debuting as a pinch hitter at Shea Stadium against the San Francisco Giants.

The versatile Bogar would play all infield & outfield positions for the Mets from 1993-1996. One of his biggest days at the plate came on August 1st, 1993 in his rookie year. He hit a pair of HRs & had four hits in Philadelphia in a game against the Phillies. He would only hit 6 HRs in 491 at bats in his entire Mets career. Unfortunately he got injured and was sidelined for the rest of the season. He hit .244 with three HRs 13 doubles & 25 RBIs in 78 games played.

In 1994 he remained with the club until early August but was only batting .154 in fifty games before getting sent to AAA Norfolk. In 1995 when play resumed after the great baseball strike, Bogar was back on the big league club.

He struggled hitting just .158 at the end of May. From June through the end of the year he hit well as he saw more steady playing time. He finished the year drawing a bases loaded walk in the final game of the season, giving the Mets a walk off win over the eventual World Champion Atlanta Braves.

Bogar had his best season batting .290 in 78 games, with one HR seven doubles & 21 RBIs. In 1996 he saw action in 91 games behind Jeff Kent (third base), Rey Ordonez (short stop) & Butch Huskey (first base) around the infield but his average fell off to .213. Bogar was traded at the end of Spring Training 1997 to the Houston Astros for Luis Lopez.

He spent four years in Houston hitting a high of .249 in 1997 getting to the post season in 1999. In 2001 he played his final season with the Los Angeles Dodgers He finished his nine year career with a lifetime .228 average with 345 hits 24 HRs 69 doubles 9 triples & 161 RBIs.

Retirement & Coaching Career: After his playing days he became a manager in the Cleveland Indians minor leagues winning Baseball Americas Future Manager Award. He then coached for the Tampa Rays as their quality assurance coach.

In 2009/2010 he was the Boston Red Sox first base coach under Terry Francona, moving over as the third base coach for 2011. In 2012 he was the Boston bench coach under Bobby Valentine. After Valentine was let go, Bogar left the organization three weeks later.

Bogar then moved on to the Texas League in 2013. He then was hired by the Texas Rangers as the teams bench coach in 2014, joining his long time friend Dave Magadan. He & Magadan were Mets together & Red Sox coaches as well. He became the Rangers interim manager after Ron Washington resigned. He did not get the managerial job in 2015 nor was he retained as bench coach.

In 2015 he teamed up with his old Mets teammate Jerry DiPoto who was now the GM in Anahiem. DiPoto resigned in June 2015 & Bogar stayed on.

The next year DiPoto went to the Seattle Mariners & Bogar became the teams bench coach for two seasons. In 2018 he became the Washington Nats first base coach under old pal Dave Martinez.

Oct 26, 2018

2016 PCL Batting Champion & Bronx Born Mets Infielder: T.J. Rivera (2011-2017)

Thomas Javier Rivera known as T.J. Rivera was born October 27th, 1988 off Westchester Avenue, in the Throggs Neck section of the Bronx, New York.

Along with Johnny Monell, he was one of two Mets on the 2016 roster who were born in the Bronx, Ed Kranepool must be proud!

The six foot one infielder, attended Lehman High School in the Bronx, as a freshman just after the 2000 Subway World Series. His father was a Mets fan as was many of his friends, unfortunately T.J. rooted for the A.L. New York team. He eventually smartened up when he signed with the New York Mets.

Many of his coaches with the New York Nine had ties in Alabama Junior College & their coach, former Met Mackey Sasser. Rivera attended junior college & then played for the Troy University Trojans in college. It was at Troy University where he met his future wife.

In 2011 he was an undrafted free agent & got a chance with the New York Mets organization. He was with the Kingsport Mets & Brooklyn Cyclones for 15 games that year. He spent the next two years at A ball St. Lucie where he hit .306 (64 games in 2012) & then .289 (125 games in 2013). 

The middle infielder hits well for average & puts the ball in play rather than hit for power. He is a top of the line up kind of batter although he lacks discipline at the plate. His infield versatility has him play at second base, short stop & third base. 2014 had him at St. Lucie again then a promotion to AA Binghamton where he combined to bat .349 helping lead the team to the Atlantic Championship.

In 2015 he hit .341 at Binghamton in 56 games, getting promoted to his highest career level at AAA Las Vegas where he batted .306 in 54 games for the 51s.

At age 27 his average cant be ignored, a career .318 hitter, but his lack of power & discipline have held him back. Other middle infielders in the organization such as Matt Reynolds & Gavin Cecchini have moved up quicker at younger ages. 

In February of 2016 he was invited to Spring Training as a non roster invitee. He got the start at third base in the Mets second Spring Training game, the first to be televised. In the 5th inning, he drove in the Mets run with a single to right field. He did not make the squad going North, and started the year at AAA Las Vegas.

Quotes: TJ Rivera- "I just try to come to the field every day and put some work in, try to find a way to get better in any way possible -- not just hitting, It's been fun. It's been a blessing. Hopefully I can get that breakthrough this year. I've just got to keep working and wait for my opportunity."

He had a great start to the season, winning the Pacific Coast Leagues Player of the month Award, batting .373 with 5 HRs. He tore up the league all year, finishing up  winning the PCL Batting Title, batting .349 with 11 HRs & 90 RBIs. Three Las Vegas 51's, of the AAA Mets minor leaguers, finished in the top three in the PCL's batting race.

On August 10th he was brought up to the Mets big league club, and got a hit that night while starting at third base. He pinch hit the next night & came through with another hit. He began to see regular action, playing at second base & third base. 

On August 14th he had two hits with two RBIs in the Mets 5-1 win over the San Diego Padres at Citi Field. Two nights later on August 16th, he had his first career four hit night, getting his average up to .363.

On September 14th, he had his biggest day of his baseball career. In an important game in the heat of a pennant race against the rival Washington Nationals in D.C., he had a three hit night while driving in three runs, including top of the 10th inning solo blast that was not only his first MLB HR, but also the game winner.

The HR came off Nats closer; Mark Melancon. Quite a night for the young man, who also helped end the 9th with a double play, after the Nats  had tied the game. The Mets went on to a huge 4-3 victory.

He would drive in runs in six of his next eight games. On September 18th his HR against the Minnesota Twins ended up being the deciding run in the 3-2 Mets win. He ended the year hitting safely in 13 of 15 games driving in runs in the last two games.

He ended 2016 batting .333 with 3 HRs 16 RBIs & a .345 on base %.

2016 NL Wild Card Game: Rivera got one of the Mets four hits in the Wild Card game against Madison Bumgarner.

In 2017 Rivera was batting .290 with 5 HRs 13 doubles & 27 RBIs into mid July. Back on May 7th, his 7th inning double tied the game against the Miami Marlins the Mets went on to win 8-7. He would produce ten RBIs in May & again two months later. He closed out June with an 11 game hit streak into July. 

He started out July with back to back HR games against the Phillies. On July 21st his two run single helped the Mets to a 7-5 win over the Oakland Athletics. At the end of July he went on the DL & it was determined he needed Tommy John surgery, shutting him down into 2018. That summer he suffered more set backs & did not play all season.

Oct 25, 2018

Former New Jersey Born Mets Relief Pitcher: Scott Schoeneweis (2007-2008)

Scott David Schoeneweis was born on October 2, 1973 on the Jersey Shore, at Long Branch, New Jersey. He grew up in Mt. Laurel Township lettering in baseball & basketball in High School.

Schoeneweis attended to Duke University & made all American in his freshman year, winning 12 games with the schools second best record in team history.

At age 19 he was diagnosed with testicular cancer, and it was found spreading to the lymph nodes. He received an aggressive chemo treatment over a three month period, lost 20 pounds but beat the cancer.

When he returned to pitch he needed Tommy John surgery, after extensive rehab he returned to pitch in his Senior year and go on to win ten games. Scott graduated from Duke University with a degree, and left as the schools all time victory leader, as well as being second all time strike outs. He played for the 1996 USA National team, then got drafted by the Anaheim Angels.

He was brought up by the Angels in 1999 going 1-1 appearing in 31 games before getting sidelined with more arm troubles. He returned in 2000 as a starter and was 7-10 with a 5.45 ERA.

In 2001 he won 10 games (10-11) posting a 5.08 ERA but was a much better pitcher against lefties. In both seasons as a starter he allowed 21 long balls each year.

In the Angels 2002 Championship season he gradually became a full time middle reliever, going 9-8 on the year & getting credit for 11 holds. He saw action in all three post season Series, appearing in two games of the World Series pitching two scoreless 8th innings against the San Francisco Giants.  

The next season he was traded to the Chicago White Sox in July and in 2004 Sox manager Ozzie Guillen, put him in the starting rotation. He went 6-9 in 19 starts, posting a 5.59 ERA, and was granted free agency at the end of the year.

He went to the Toronto Blue Jays, but during a game in Oakland, he fell down on the wet grass during warm ups, injuring his knee and tearing a tendon. He would pitch with the tear for two years. Midway through 2006 he was sent to the Cincinnati Reds going 2-0 there while posting a 0.63 ERA in 16 games.
That off season the New York Mets gave him a three year $10 million dollar deal to serve mostly as a lefty specialist out of the bullpen. Schoeneweis debuted as a Met in the second game of the season, getting credit for a hold against the St. Louis Cardinals.

He had a good month of April, getting credit for five holds & posting a 1.86 ERA. He pitched well against lefties all year, holding them to a .204 batting average. He also pitched well with runners in scoring position, as hitters only batted .221 against him.

But he struggled mightily against righties when he was used in that role. He went 0-2 overall giving up 33 earned runs in 59 innings, getting credit for 11 holds.

In 2008 it only got worse for Scott, he started out by being the losing pitcher on the last Opening Day in Shea Stadium history.

He was accused of receiving a steroid shipment back while with the White Sox although he denied the charges & it was never proven. On the year he allowed seven HRs, usually in key games, lost six decisions (2-6) and became a target of the Shea Stadium boo birds.

On the last day of the season, the final game ever played at Shea Stadium he was the losing pitcher after giving up an 8th inning HR to Florida’s Wes Helms.

Luis Ayala came in and gave up another HR, but it’s Schoeneweis’ HR that is most remembered, since it was the games losing run. The fans really let him have it on his exit that day. (I know I was there) He was done in New York, as in the off season he was traded to the Arizona D-backs for Connor Robertson.

Drama & Family Tragedy: In May of 2009, Scott’s wife Gabrielle was found dead from an overdose of cocaine in their Arizona home by their 14 year old daughter.

She was just 39 years old, and left behind four children, one from a previous marriage (the 14 year old). Scott left Florida where the D-backs were playing the Marlins and was given some time off to settle things best he could.

He returned the following month but couldn’t get his mind on baseball; he allowed 15 runs over just nine innings pitched. He was placed on the DL by August in order to deal with depression.

In 2010 he was a free agent & his old Mets coach Rick Peterson gave him a shot with the Milwaukee Brewers. He went to Spring Training but didn’t make the team.

He signed with the Boston Red sox and made their Opening Day staff, but after 15 games and a 7.90 ERA he was designated for assignment.

In a 12 year career he is 47-57 with nine saves, 568 strike outs 398 walks and a 5.01 ERA in 972 innings over 577 games (93 starts).

Honors: The Jewish Schoeneweis is the all time leader in games pitched for Jewish pitchers passing the great Sandy Koufax & former Oakland A's twenty game winner, Ken Holtzman.

Oct 23, 2018

Remembering Mets History (2000) World Series Game #3- Mets Win First Game of Sub Way Series At Shea

Tuesday October 24th, 2000- World Series Game #3- Shea Stadium, NY: 

This is the only game I acknowledge from that Series. centerfieldmaz & entourage sat in the very last seats of the left field upper deck at Shea Stadium. Us & fellow Met fans really let the other NY teams fans have it.

This was the first World Series game back at Shea Stadium since the Championship Year of 1986. A New York crowd of 55,299 came to Shea for Game Three of the Subway Series. 

Bobby Valentine's Mets (94-68) had won the NL Wild Card, beaten the San Francisco Giants in the NLDS in five game & the St. Louis Cardinals in the NLCS in five games as well.

This World Series was the first New York Sub Way World Series since 1956, when the Brooklyn Dodgers took on the AL New York team.

The Mets had dropped the first two games of the series, losing a 12 inning nail bitter 4-3 & then a heartbreaking 6-5 loss in Game #2. In that game they had scored five runs in the 9th inning & fell just short of a comeback. An earlier base running blinder by Timo Perez may have been the difference. That game also featured the next round of the Mike Piazza vs Roger Clemens drama.

On this nigt the Mets stopped pitcher; Orlando Hernandez's post season win streak at eight games, as they took a 4-2 victory. The Mets starter was Rick Reed (11-5 / 4.11 ERA / 121 Ks).

In the bottom of the 2nd, Robin Ventura put the Mets on the board first with a lead off HR to right center field, almost hitting the famous HR Apple.

The A.L. New York team scored in the 3rd & 4th inning, as Rick Reed lost the lead and the Mets trailed 2-1 going into the 6th inning. 

In the home 6th, Mike Piazza hit a ground rule double to lead off. Next, Robin Ventura got aboard on a walk. Todd Zeile followed with a double bringing in Piazza to tie the game up 2-2, much to the delight of the Shea Mets fans. 

Turk Wendell came on & struck out the first two batters of the 7th inning. He then walked a batter & was relieved by Dennis Cook. Cook hit his first batter with a pitch but then struck out Bernie Williams to end the threat. 

John Franco came on in the 8th with no one out & a runner on. He got a double play ball, gave up a base hit & then retired the last batter of the inning.

In the bottom of the 8th, Todd Zeile singled to center with one out. Benny Agbayani (who hit over .350 in the post season) came up big once again, as he doubled home Zeile in what would be the games winning run. 

Benny Agbayani was removed for pinch runner "Super" Joe McEwing. Next up, Jay Payton got on with an infield hit, advancing McEwing to third. 

Mets pinch hitter; Bubba Trammell then hit a sac fly to center, McEwing scored to make it 4-2 Mets.
Armando Benitez came on in the 9th, he allowed a single & a then a strange play involving defensive put the runner on second base. Benitez managed to get out of it & close out the game with the save.

Former Mets Back Up Short Stop: Omar Quintanella (2012-2014)

Omar Quintanilla was born on October 24, 1981 in El Paso, Texas. The five foot nine left hand hitter, throws right & is a fine defensive player.

Quintanilla attended the University of Texas at Austin on a baseball scholarship. He played second & third for the Longhorns, appearing in two National Championship games. He became the first round pick of the Oakland Athletics in 2003 (the 33rd pick overall).

While still a hot prospect he was traded along with Eric Byrnes to the Colorado Rockies in exchange for Joe Kennedy & Jay Witacisk. Quintanilla spent five years with the Rockies as a backup middle infielder, playing behind Troy Tulowitzki, Kazo Matsui & Clint Barnes.

He saw the most action in 2008, batting .238 with 17 doubles, two HRs & 15 RBIs. He was part of the 2007 NL Champion Rockies season, playing 27 games. He was with the club in April May & September but did not play in the post season.

In 2010 he received a 50 game suspension by MLB for using a performance enhancing drug. The solid infielder signed with the Texas Rangers in 2011 seeing action in just 11 games at the big league level for the AL Champion Rangers.

In 2012 he signed with the New York Mets, and played at 48 games with AAA Buffalo, hitting an impressive .333. He was called up to the Mets in May debuting on May 29th at Citi Field. Quintanilla had a huge day, with three hits & a pair of doubles in a 6-3 win over the Philadelphia Phillies. He began to see regular action filling in at shortstop & was batting over .300 until md June. On June 9th he hit his only HR of the season, it came off the AL New York's Phil Hughes.

In 29 games he hit his career best .257 with one HR & Four RBIs. In July he was traded to the first place Baltimore Orioles, to help out defensively for the playoff run.

The deal was for the Mets to have future considerations. He was granted free agency by Baltimore & got resigned by the Mets for 2013.

 When Ruben Tejada went down with injury, Quintanilla was called up joining the club in time for the subway series sweep in New York. On June 2nd, at Marlins Stadium he hit his seventh career HR, it came at the start of a nine game hit streak, that saw him hit two doubles, two HRs & drive in three runs. He ended the streak batting .325 & with a HR against the Cardinals in a 9-2 loss at Citi Field. 

On July 2nd, he drove in three runs with a pair of hits in the Mets 9-2 win over the Arizona D-backs. On August 31st, he collected two hits with a season high two RBIs in an 11-3 win over the Washington Nationals. 

Through September he saw a bit less playing time when Ruben Tejada returned to the line up from an injury. 

In 2013 he saw action in 95 games (92 at short) posting a .978 fielding %. Overall he hit just .222 with 2 HRs 21 RBIs but did draw 38 walks.

Defensively Quintanilla's smooth play at short, impressed everyone, posting a .977 fielding% turning 44 double plays. In 2014 he played just 15 games at the big league level batting .207. He played 46 games for AAA Las Vegas & was designated for assignment in early summer.

In a nine year career he has played in 402 games, batting .207 with 228 hits, 43 doubles, 5 triples 8 HRs & 74 RBIs. He has posted a .981 fielding % in 229 games at short stop. He has also played 140 games at second base & 14 games at third.