Posted in Baseball, Uncategorized

Morning reading: A call to honor Joan Payson

Joan Payson's Mets Hall of Fame plaque (Photo credit: Paul Hadsall)
Joan Payson’s Mets Hall of Fame plaque (Photo credit: Paul Hadsall)

Blogger Becca Boosical wants the New York Mets to do more to honor team founder and original owner Joan Payson.

Here is my call to the Mets organization and my fellow fans – let us honor the woman who brought us our Mets. She is probably the most important person in the history of our team, because without her we wouldn’t be here.  Lets do something about it.  Giver her a gate, give her a day, give her the respect she deserves.  Fans, if you don’t know about her, learn about her. … Let us honor our past, so when we celebrate, it is that much sweeter. LGM!

(Becca’s Balls via Mets Police)

Continue reading “Morning reading: A call to honor Joan Payson”

Posted in Baseball, Baseball Cards, Uncategorized

Mets baseball card of the week: Tom Glavine 2006 post-season highlights

Tom-GlavineEvery Mets fan I know can’t think of Tom Glavine without remembering his awful performance on September 30th, 2007.

You know, the one where he couldn’t make it out of the first innings. The one where he took his eighth loss of the season as the Mets were eliminated from the playoff race on the last day.  The one he made sure to point out was not devastating to him (even though it was to many Mets fans.)

But let’s be fair to one of baseball’s newest Hall of Fame members – in five seasons with the Mets, he put together a 61-56 record with a 3.97 ERA. Those 61 victories rank him 11th in team history, and Jonathon Niese is going to need a 19-win season to push past him in 2014.

Glavine also recorded two post-season victories for the Mets in 2006 — that’s two more than Mets Hall of Famer Dwight Gooden has.

One of Glavine’s post-season victories came in Game 1 of the 2005 National League Championship Series, which is what this baseball card from the 2006 Topps Update and Highlights series commemorates.

Glavine held the Cardinals to just four hits and two walks over seven innings as the Mets opened the series with a 2-0 shutout win.

(If Glavine had pitched better in Game 5, maybe we’d have different memories of him — but he surrendered three runs on seven hits and three home runs in four plus innings as the Mets lost 4-2.)

This card is the gold-bordered parallel version of the regular card – it’s serial numbered on the back and limited to “just” 2006 copies. If you can find them, gold parallels generally sell for about a quarter (unless the player is a local star or it’s a notable rookie card.) However, because they draw little interest, the gold parallels are often relegated to dealers’ and collectors’ commons boxes.

You can follow Paul’s Random Baseball Stuff on Facebook or Google+, see my photos on Flickr and Instagram, and follow @PaulsRandomStuf on Twitter, where I talk about about a variety of things in addition to baseball.

Posted in Baseball, Uncategorized

Congratulations to the Hall of Fame Class of 2014


Frank Thomas 1991 Donruss Diamond King baseball card from my collection
Frank Thomas 1991 Donruss Diamond King baseball card from my collection

Today is a happy one for Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine, Frank Thomas, their families, and their fans.

They will join Joe Torre, Tony LaRussa and Bobby Cox in the Hall of Fame Class of 2014.

It is a sad day for Jack Morris (and Hideo Nomo) fans, who will now have to rely on Expansion Era Committee consideration.

More than a dozen other players with legitimate Hall of Fame cases will have to wait until next year to see if the Baseball Writers of America will let them in, or continue to allow grudges, morality crusades, and thoughts about the ideal size of each year’s Hall of Fame class to influence their voting.

(It sure would have been nice if some of these writers took such a strong stand against performance enhancing substances in the 1990s, wouldn’t it?)

I’d like to celebrate the fact that two former New York Mets players will be honored in Cooperstown this summer, but I only remember Joe Torre as the manager of the New York Yankees (and a mediocre early 1990s St. Louis Cardinals team), and Tom Glavine’s most enduring Mets’ memory is a start that ended in the first inning.

Next year’s Hall of Fame class could be a strong one – if the writers will let it.  Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez, John Smoltz and Gary Sheffield will join holdovers  Craig Biggio (74.8), Mike Piazza (62.2) Jeff Bagwell (54.3),  Tim Raines (46.1),  Roger Clemens (35.4),  Barry Bonds (34.7),  Lee Smith (29.9),  Curt Schilling (29.2), Edgar Martinez (25.2),  Alan Trammell (20.8),  Mike Mussina (20.3), and Jeff Kent (15.2) among a number of talented players on the 2015 ballot.

At least by next week, we should be able to set aside all of the Hall of Fame arguments until next off-season.

Congratulations to the new inductees, and better luck next time to the deserving candidates who missed out.

Posted in Baseball, Uncategorized

47 days until spring (training)

There are 47 days until New York Mets pitchers and catchers report to Port St. Lucie for spring training.

Hisanori Takahashi 2010 Topps Chrome autographed card from my collection

Since 1962, 14 Mets players have worn #47. Jay Hook was the first, Hisanori Takahashi was the last,  Tom Glavine was the most famous and Joe McEwing was the most versatile. But the player I associate with #47 is 1986 Mets closer Jesse Orosco. Who can forget the sight of Orosco’s glove flying up into the air as he celebrated getting the last out of the 1986 World Series?

GM Sandy Alderson made a bit of news yesterday, signing minor league free agent infielder Omar Quintanilla (as first reported by Adam Rubin of ESPN New York.) The move was widely panned by Mets fans, but for the sake of my own sanity I’m going to pretend that Quintanilla was signed to back up Reese Havens, Jordany Valdespin, or whoever else might be playing the middle infield positions for the Buffalo Bisons this year. (At least until Quintanilla ends up on the major league roster, anyway.)

ESPN New York also reported the oh-so-exciting details of the contracts given to new Mets relievers Frank Francisco and Jon Rauch. If any of the beat writers start keeping track of the number of games Rauch finishes because of his modest contract incentives, I think I’m going to end up pulling out what’s left of my hair in frustration.

The Mets have their winter blood drive scheduled for Thursday – all donors will receive a voucher for a pair of tickets to a game in April.

In hobby news, Nick Diunte profiled Chris Potter of Chris Potter Sports (the guy behind the private autograph signings I seem to be plugging just about every month.)

Posted in Baseball, Uncategorized

A Thanksgiving gift from Omar Minaya

I really have no idea how good the New York Mets will be next year, but I’m already more optimistic about next season. 😎

Yesterday, Tom Glavine officially re-signed with the Atlanta Braves. Although he had his moments in New York, it frequently felt like Glavine’s heart never really left Atlanta. I certainly had a hard time viewing him as a Met… even after five years in New York, he still seemed like a Brave.

Today, Omar Minaya managed to convince the Milwaukee Brewers to take Guillermo Mota off our hands. 😯 I don’t know that Johnny Estrada is an upgrade over Paul LoDuca, but on Nov. 20, I don’t particularly care.

Guillermo Mota and Tom Glavine — two guys I didn’t particularly enjoy rooting for — will be wearing other uniforms next year. And that’s quite a nice Thanksgiving gift.  😀