In 1989, a lot of baseball fans were excited about Will Clark and Kevin Mitchell, who led the San Francisco Giants to a National League title. They finished 1-2 in the NL MVP voting, with Mitchell claiming the award with his league-leading 47 home runs, 125 RBI and .635 slugging percentage.
Star Co., a small baseball card maker in the 1980s and 90s that produced a lot of 10-card sets that focused on one particular player, broke with tradition and paired the two SF Giants stars in one set. So why is this relevant to a New York Mets baseball card collector?
Simple – two of Mitchell’s cards in the set used photos from 1986 when he was a Met.
If you were following the Mets in 1989, how many times did you wonder that year if New York’s season would have been different with Mitchell in left field instead of Kevin McReynolds? (And if I’ve got any San Diego Padres fans stopping by, how many of you wondered how things would have been different for your team if it had kept Mitchell?)
The Mets lost again, the seventh time in their last 10 games, as they fell to the Cincinnati Reds 6-1 on Wednesday. If there was a bright spot, at least the Philadelphia Phillies also lost so the Mets are still clinging to a tenuous one-game lead for third place in the NL East.
But let’s talk about some people in baseball who had worse days than the Mets:
Back to the Mets, though. Someone should really remind the offense that the season isn’t over yet. Mike Leake limited the Mets to just four hits in his complete game victory, and New York’s lone run scored when Daniel Murphy hit into a double play.
R.A. Dickey had a disappointing start, allowing five runs on ten hits (including three home runs) and two walks over six innings even though he struck out 10. Thanks to the movement of Dickey’s knuckleball, Josh Thole set a team record he probably wishes he didn’t have – he was charged with three passed balls in the game.
“The rule is, as they explained it, you’re not suppose to have anything on your wrist. They must be newly enforcing it. Twenty-three starts he hasn’t had to take it off yet. So tonight it was an issue…. We just want to know what the big deal was…I think it bothered him, yes. He still has to pitch through it and he knows that.”
My plans for this weekend (health, weather and other circumstances permitting) involve going to Trenton on Sunday to see the Harrisburg Senators take on the Trenton Thunder, so I spent a few minutes tonight trying to find baseball cards for the Senators players to sign. I’m still amused that they have an infielder named Stephen King, and yes, I do have one of his baseball cards. 🙂
Saturday, I hope to be at Citi Field to watch Mike Pelfrey face Ryan Vogelsong as the Mets take on the San Francisco Giants. Last weekend, when I realized I should expect to see Pelfrey, I wasn’t exactly thrilled. This week, after Johan Santana and R.A. Dickey both reminded us that even good pitchers have bad days, I’m just hoping for a good game. I’m looking forward to seeing Angel Pagan again, but I hope he doesn’t have too good of a series against his old team. If I get back to New Jersey in time, maybe I’ll be able to make it to Daniel Murphy‘s scheduled autograph appearance.
Of course, the way my allergies have been acting up this week I don’t think the odds are all that good that I’ll make it to both games…. and I may not get to either.
What games are you planning to go to this weekend?
The 33-year-old Puerto Rican native’s father grew up a Mets fan and he has family in the tri-state area.
“Last year, I battled a few injuries, but this year, I’m going to be ready,” Torres said, referring to an Achilles strain that cost him much of April and a right leg contusion that knocked him out for another two weeks in August. “[The 2010 season] was big, we won the World Series and I had a big year. I was a big part of that. I know what I can do. I’m going to go strong, and I’m going to do my best out there.”
There are at least a couple of San Francisco Giants bloggers who seem like they’ll miss Torres.
And when Torres comes back next summer with the Mets, I’m going to give him a standing ovation as if he’s Willie Mays carrying Joe Montana on his shoulders after they’ve returned from the first manned mission to Mars.
Thank you, thank you, thank you Andres Torres. You’ll always be one of my favorite Giants of all-time, even if you only stuck around long enough to get 1,000 at-bats or so. You’ll be missed.
Grant’s post hits all the right notes on why Torres was such a fun guy to watch play the game. His combination of defensive excellence, energy, and sheer improbability make him one of my favorite Giants of all-time.
Now I’ll admit that I wasn’t especially excited about a guy who hit .221 with a .643 OPS in 2011 joining the Mets. But I feel a bit better about it after reading these articles. Maybe a change of scenery will help Torres recapture the magic he found in 2010.