Today, let’s continue to look at the 2009 New York Mets (and let me show off another new autograph acquisition.)
Gary Sheffield‘s signing right before Opening Day seemed to take everyone by surprise. Sure, for years I thought it would be nice to see Sheffield play on the same team that made his uncle famous. But with Sheffield at the end of his career, the move didn’t make a lot of sense — the last time he played at least 20 games in the field in a season was 2006.
To the surprise of everyone, Sheffield dedicated himself to becoming a competent Major League outfielder again. Sure, he wasn’t a gold glove candidate. But he wasn’t Daniel Murphy, either.
As the season went on, Sheffield showed signs of wearing down. But he tried his best to stay in the Mets’ increasingly depleted lineup. When we got to the end of August, it was clear to everyone that the Mets season was over. But for reasons known only to ownership, the Mets turned down a chance to trade Sheffield to a contender. Sheffield was understandably disappointed, and he was virtually absent from games for the rest of the season.
Sheffield still hopes to play long enough to reach another milestone — 3000 hits — but I think he’ll have to reach that goal in another team’s uniform. Still, he was fun to watch this year. I’m glad he was a Met.
This card comes from the 2005 Topps Finest set and pictures Sheffield as a New York Yankee. Not my first choice, but I couldn’t argue the price — $7 shipped for a certified autograph of a 500-home run club member is a pretty good deal. Sheffield does have a few 2009 cards that show him as a Met, but I don’t know that I’ll ever have a chance to get one of those signed without spending a small fortune.