The second annual Queens Baseball Convention at McFadden’s Citi Field is coming up this Saturday, and for the second year I’m going to have to miss it. (The day I was going to purchase my ticket, I found out I was going to have to work on Saturday… maybe I’ll get to go in 2016.)
Three former Mets players with World Series rings will be the headline guests of the convention – Mookie Wilson, Wally Backman and Ed Charles. Current Mets radio broadcaster Josh Lewin and New York’s best baseball mascot, Mr. Met, will also be there.
Backman and Wilson will both be signing autographs for fans (free of charge with paid admission) and participating in panel discussions, while Charles is attending to accept the Gil Hodges Unforgettable Fire Award. Filmmaker Heather Quinlan will discuss the making of 86 Mets: The Movie, a film about baseball’s most beloved and hated team. There will be a presentation about legendary Mets broadcaster Lindsay Nelson, a Q&A panel with ESPN New York’s Adam Rubin, and a “State of the Mets” round table with bloggers and professional media members.
Monday night, the New York Mets held their second Social Media Night promotion. Fans were offered field level tickets in left field and their choice of one of two unique experiences before the game: they could either watch batting practice from the outfield, or they could take part in a question and answer session with a Mets pitcher Tim Byrdak.
During the four years Citi Field has been open, I’ve had the opportunity to watch a game from most of the different sections (including the Delta Club seats), but I’ve never actually gotten to go in through one of the VIP entrances before. So that was fun. The Mets staff members were all friendly and pleasant, but it took them a little while to figure out where we were supposed to check in.
The question and answer session included two bonus guests before Byrdak arrived: Mets broadcasters Josh Lewin and Kevin Burkhardt.
Lewin (@joshlewinstuff) is not on Facebook, but he has embraced Twitter because it gives him an opportunity to interact with a wide variety of people during downtime. “You just kinda tweet what you feel and move on,” he said.
Lewin asked the audience what kinds of things they wanted him to post into the social media realm. Answers included off-field stuff, such as pictures from airports & dinners and more details about announcers’ game preparation.
If the goal of cutting off Megdal’s access to the clubhouse before and after the game and to the field during batting practice was to punish him, it’s not going to work. He hardly needs access to Mets players to keep writing about the team’s finances. Moreover, Megdal managed to use this “story” to get mainstream media members and at least half of the Mets bloggers to mention him and his book. If you’re a Mets fan and you hadn’t heard about “Wilpon’s Folly” before, you have now.
In the Bronx, it looks like Raul Ibanez could be wearing pinstripes this season. I wanted to see the Yankees bring back Hideki Matsui – mainly because I don’t think he ever should have been forced out – but Ibanez could be a useful piece for the Yankees in a limited role.