We got a hint of early spring weather this weekend, and the Queens Baseball Convention brought us a taste baseball. Current Mets Brandon Nimmo and Chris Flexen and former Met star Todd Hundley told stories about their careers and signed autographs for a couple hundred fans who packed the Katch Astoria on Saturday.
I really want to compliment the event organizers for putting together a fun event that allowed us to celebrate being Mets fans for an afternoon. Flexen and especially Nimmo made new fans with their humble and genuine natures, and Hundley told some great stories about his playing days, like the time Gary Carter stole a base against him or how Hundley thought he’d been traded when he got the news he’d gotten his first MLB callup. (In 25+ years, Hundley is the first Mets player I remember saying that Eddie Murray helped him to be a better hitter.)
I hope Wright is able to leave the game on his own terms. He says that he’s listening to his doctors and will walk away if they tell him that continuing to try to play will harm his long-term health, and that’s the only reason I’d want him to give up on his comeback attempt.
I’d be happy to have Colon back on a minor league deal, if he’s willing to go to Las Vegas as an insurance policy if one of the Mets’ starters gets hurt or underperforms. But at age 44, Colon is as much of a lottery ticket as Matt Harvey, Steven Matz and Zack Wheeler, only with a much lower upside. So if Colon needs a major league guarantee, I’d pass.
Tebow has played better than I would have expected and I’ve heard a number of stories about how good he’s been interacting with fans. But by the same token, he’s a 30-year-old Single-A player who can only be counted as a prospect by the most charitable definition. So what kind of message does this to the organizational veterans in the Mets’ minor league system? Probably not a good one.
The Mets are getting better with the “Free Shirt Friday” designs, although there are still some clunkers. At the QBC we learned that Marvel is designing the TBD shirt… odds are it will be Thor-related, but given the weekend I think a David Wright Captain America design could be fun too.
The 2018 Queens Baseball Convention is happening next Saturday, January 20th.
Developed as a fan-run fanfest for the New York Mets, the QBC offers us a chance to get excited about baseball again during a long, cold winter.
Current Mets players Brandon Nimmo and Chris Flexen, and former Mets star Todd Hundley will be holding panels and signing autographs. Mr. Met will also be making an appearance. Gary Apple and Jon Harper will host a live (non-televised) version of SNY’s Hot Stove show. There will also be vendors and more.
I’m planning to spend next Saturday at Katch Astoria. There are still a limited number of tickets available at www.queensbaseballconvention.com. If you see me there, please say hi.
Geof surprised me with a couple of envelopes filled with Mets baseball cards this week. Here are a few of my favorites and some that just caught my eye.
I had just gotten back into baseball card collecting in 2002, so I really don’t remember whether “Heroes of Baseball” was a full set released by Upper Deck that year or just the name of this insert series. This card, #HTS3, commemorates the April 22, 1970 game when he struck out the last 10 batters en route to a 19-strikeout performance.
Mets fans of a certain age undoubtedly remember that game. Younger fans might remember hearing about it during a Mets broadcast – particularly during the era that Seaver was a TV analyst for the Mets, it seemed to come up quite often.
I love oddball baseball items, and these New York Mets “stamps” produced in 1996 by Chris Martin Enterprises fit the bill. Released a few years before self-adhesive stamps became popular with the United States Postal Service, these collectible “stamps” should really be classed as stickers in my opinion.
The Mets were represented by Todd Hundley, Jose Vizcaino, Jeff Kent, Rico Brogna and Bobby Jones. According to the checklist on the back, each of baseball’s 28 teams had its own sheet of five players. (The Phillies’ chosen five were Jim Eisenreich,Gregg Jefferies, Mickey Morandini, Paul Quantrill and Darren Daulton. The selected Yankees were Wade Boggs, Jimmy Key,Paul O’Neill, David Cone and Bernie Williams.)
For $5 or 10 proof of purchase seals, you could join the Pro Stamps Club and receive “a cool membership card, team stamp poster (8.5×11), newsletter and information on how to order other NFL, NHL and NBA team Pro Stamps sets.”
I spent about $12 at this month’s sports card show at the Rahway Senior Center this morning. My purchases included a couple of packs of Topps Heritage Minor League edition (I ended up with a game-used jersey card, a shortprint, and absolutely no cards of anyone I recognized), a few things I thought other people might appreciate, and a pair of bizarre 1990s Mets baseball cards.
I actually like the 1996 Topps Laser Todd Hundley card. I’m impressed by the die-cut effect – I wonder how much cost that added to card production? It would be neat to see an insert making use of a similar effect now
The other card is from the 1998 Pacific Crown Royale set. I bought it because I still have difficulty remembering that Hideo Nomo was briefly a Met at one point in his career.