Thursday, September 24, 2009

All Our Past Times

(This has been the worst year for Met fans since 1974. I think it all started when they named it "Citi Field". I think it came down to Citigroup, AIG and General Motors. After they named the stadium, Bernie made off with Fred Wilpon's cash. Below is something I wrote before the last game at Shea. If the present sucks, and the future unknowable, at least the past is, well, simply amazin'.)

Shea's last day

Who should be there.

Ed Kranepool's DNA is in the cement of Shea Stadium. A native New Yorker, an original Met, here should be there.

Gary Cohen & Howie Rose, who went from listening to Met games on transistor radios to being the voices of Met radio, should be the Co- Masters of Ceremony.

Off course Buddy Harrelson has to be there. The dirt between 2nd and third belongs to him as far as I am concerned.

Cleon Jones has to enter from beyond left field. When Cleon caught the last out in '69 and briefly went to one knee, it was as if he knew that this was a moment for the ages. And it was.

Kevin McReynolds and Juan Samuel should not be allowed in Queens on this night. If George Foster is within city limits, the NYPD should be under standing orders to detain him and escort him outside of New York City.

Lenny & Wally have to be introduced together. They are like Lemmon & Matthau, you can't think of one without the other.

From left-center-and right, here's what should happen: We show Endy's catch robbin' Rolen in Game 7; Followed by Tommie Agee's two amazin' catches against the Orioles and Rocky Swoboda's miracle diving catch from '69 as well.

Then Endy and Swoboda arm -in arm with Tommie's widow emerge from center field. We then cut to one of the Sign Man's Original signs: The Letter "D" with a picture of a Fence

The Sign Man Karl Ehrhardt was as much as a fixture at Shea as the mound.

Some of his Greatest Signs:

After Frank Taveras made an error: "Look Ma, No Hands"

When Jose Cardenal would strike out "Jose, Can You See?"

And the greatest sign of all, after the last out in '69: "There Are No Words"

Let's have his Signs raised to the crowd at Shea one more time.

Speaking of the Sign Man, Met fans were the first fans in the world to bring banners to games. Remember banner day at Shea? It was an endless parade of creativity by die-hard Met fans. On the last day, the field should be ringed with banners from Met fans.

I want to hear a 93 year old Jane Jarvis play the organ one more time.

I want a moment of silence for the greatest Mets fan ever: Doris from Rego Park

Bill Shea's tireless work to bring National League Baseball back to New York should be recognized. His family should have any seats they want at "The Gil"

I want Mrs. Bob Murphy escorted out to the field by Jose Reyes. Mrs. Hodges shall be escorted by David Wright. Bouquets of flowers for both women.

I want to hear Murph's voice say "GETS BY BUCKNER!" one more time.

Remember what Ralph said to Murph during Murph's last broadcast:

For Murphy's finale, the Mets reunited him on television with Kiner. At one point, Kiner said to Murphy, ''Remember when you said, 'Bob Aspromonte's parents are here, and they're high and outside?'''

To me, Kiner's Korner was the best show in television history. (Narrowly beating out "The White Shadow".) In all of our Shea adventures, we never got to the Kiner's Korner's set. It's a major regret in my life.

Ralph is an original Met and beloved by all Met fans. He gets a seat of honor.

One of Lindsey Nelson's Sports Coats should be on display

Mike Piazza will be there. He should be introduced as "the greatest hitting catcher of all time MIKE PIAZZA!" I always want Mike announced that way, until you can show me a catcher who was a better hitter.

Bobby V. should be there. Is it me, or does Bobby V's accomplishments grow stronger, given the perspective of time & distance?

Tom Glavine is not invited. In fact, all of Glavine's statistics should be deleted from Met history.

Ray Knight should come back as a conquering hero.

How can you have a last day at Shea without Felix Milan? Or John Stearns? You can't.

The next two Mets are beloved by all Met fans. Just saying their names brings a smile to all Met fans: Mookie & Rusty. They will have a rightful place on Shea's last day.

We also need some Mets to boo on our last day. Doug Sisk, Mel Rojas, Armando Benitez and John Franco, your invitations have been sent out. Tell Bobby Bo as well.

Gary & Keith have to come out together. With Davey. Frank Cashen should be with them.

Its funny how time works. A whole new generation of Met fans see Keith as an announcer, and not a player.

Darryl & Doc have to come out together. Darryl is back with us, and I think that is great. They did not leave under the best of circumstances, but let them hear for the last time a Shea roar in their honor. Let that be their last memory of Shea.

Leiter & Cone have gone over to the dark side. No need to bring them back.

The Kooz should be there. He's one of the most underrated pitchers of all time. The guy won over 200 games with Don Hahn and George Theodore hitting in the middle of the lineup, for Christ sakes.

If he can make bail, by all means Kevin Mitchell should be there.

Bring on the arms: Sid, Bobby O, & Ronnie

Bring in the Firemen: Jesse & Roger

Bring on our lovable 70's Mets: Maz, Steve Henderson, Youngblood & Flynn

I want a video tribute to the spiritual heart of the Mets, Tug McGraw. YA GOTTA BELIEVE! Met fans wouldn't have it any other way. I want an honor guard to lower the 1973 NL Pennant Flag and I want to give it to Tug's family.

The Franchise. Tom Terrific. The greatest pitcher in New York City History. The man elected to the Hall of Fame with the highest percentage of votes ever. Our first, undisputed, no doubt about it, superstar.

Tom Seaver

He comes out alone. The honor guard will take down the 1969 World Champion Flag and hand it to Tom. Tom will take it and present it to Mrs. Hodges for safekeeping. It's only right.

At some point, parachute man has to make his arrival. Remember when that crazy bastard landed during the World Series? It was proof that Met fans are certifiable. Only at Shea I tell you.

I want to see a video of the great playoff walk off home run by Todd Pratt. Plus the grand slam- single by Robin Ventura.

And don't forget Lenny's walk off against the Astros. Let's see that again. And Piazza's post 9-11 game winner.

Let the last pitch at Shea be Seaver to Piazza. Can any team claim an all -time better battery? I don't think so. Whitey to Yogi? Please. They were not as good. As Casey used to say "You can look it up."

Pete Flynn can shut out the lights.

And the voice of Bob Murphy can provide us with a happy recap.......

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