It's quite funny, maybe it was because in 1980 I was such a young pup ( I was eight that April
) and has repressed memories of that god awful season, or maybe it's from the heavy drinking of my mid-teenage years that helped me forget. But when watching Mets Yearbook 1980 last night I had a flood of memories rushing back to me like a tidal wave of sewage rushing down a New York City gutter. It was awesome seeing the old footage ( Hey Nelson Doubleday looked more like Lee Iococca and Fred Wilpon looked less like the Crypt Keeper!). Seeing the likes of Doug Flynn, Lee Mazzilli, Steve Henderson and Mike Jorgensen playing again put a ironic grin on my face - as if I still believed that god awful slogan that was " The Magic Is Back
" No folks we weren't fooled , we knew that this team was at best mediocre and at worst they were a team that even the Washington Generals could beat ( and they were a basketball team
!) The 1980 Mets would go a putrid 67 - 95 which landed them in the cellar for the third straight year. But it's funny, the one thing that I forgot about were all the injuries that the team sustained, and that the team for the first few months of the season were actually competitive. It is eerily similar to the '2009 season with that the exception that last seasons team were expected to be in the thick of the post season, while the '80 team was still expected to be - well bad. But if you look closely you could see alot of parallels, three fifths of both teams starting rotations were decimated by injuries. Both the '80 team and last years edition saw one of their superstars and top run producers get sidelined for much of the season - ( Beltran's knee and John Stearns finger
) Both teams were looking for fresh starts the 1980 Mets were bought by Doubleday & Wilpon and they made major upgrades to Shea Stadium while the 2009 team christened the new state of the art Citi Field. But both teams saw futility, with the 2009 Mets losing 92 games , just avoiding falling into the cellar for the first time since '94. The other parallel that I saw was all the highly touted prospects that were brought up that season such as Mookie Wilson, Hubie Brooks, and Wally Backman - these guys helped form the core ( or in Hubie's case helped to procure Gary Carter
)that would propel the Mets to the promise land in '86, just like we hope that Ike Davis, Josh Thole , Fernando Martinez and Jenrry Mejia will help bring us there in the coming years. . But 2010 brings us a bigger sense of optimism with yesterdays news that Jose Reyes may be back for opening day. along with the acquisitions of Jason Bay and the Rod Barajas signing . 2010 might just be our 1986 all over again !And with that said ..... HERE COMES THE INFAMY !!!!! " Welcome back Jose !! - NOW STAY HEALTHY !!!"
Happy Birthday wishes go out to Moises Alou's uncle, and Former Mets outfielder from the '75 team ,Jesus Alou is 68. (1942)One time Mets killer for the Cardinals and the Phillies, Garry Templeton is 54 .(1956) Many fans don't remember but he did finish his career with a whimper on the '91 Mets as a reserve infielder/outfielder , batting a paltry .228 in 80 games.
New York Mets traded one time Los Angeles Dodger Derrell Griffith to the Houston Astros for infielder ( and future Mets coach
) Sandy Alomar on March 24, 1967. Griffith never played one game with the Mets.New York Mets traded Bud Harrelson to the Philadelphia Phillies for Fred Andrews on March 24, 1978. Its funny I always thought that Bud retired as a Met. It is funny how time erodes the facts sometimes .And don't forget - there are just 12 Ron Darling 12 days until the Mets open the 2010 season against the Florida Marlins at Citi Field.