Some of the greatest moments and memories in baseball and in life in general came from spontaneity. Ask anyone about a spontaneous road trip they took in college. Chances are it was the best trip of their life. How often do you hear a couple talk about how they got together and neither of them had plans to meet anyone the day they met? Bring up the 1999 All Star game in Boston and the moment most people remember is the impromptu gathering of All Stars around Ted Williams. These moments weren’t planned, they weren’t scripted and the were real. Bud Selig tried to recreate the Ted Williams moment in the 2001 All Star game in Seattle with Cal Ripken and Tony Gwynn and it failed miserably because it was planned.
Well, the Mets had one of those spontaneous moments happen to them over the weekend and in typical Mets fashion instead of capitalizing on the situation, they erased it. Dwight Gooden, one of the few true superstars in Mets history walked into the Ebbets Club at Citi Field. Yes, the Ebbets Club at Citi Field. God forbid the Mets call it the 41 Club in honor of Seaver or anything related to the Mets. Anyway, Gooden walked into the Ebbets Club and was asked to autograph one of the walls near the bar at the club. Gooden autographed the wall and life was good until the Mets deemed Gooden’s actions inappropriate.
The Mets will erase the Gooden autograph. Here is reason Mets longtime PR man, Jay Horwitz gave; “It’s a brand new building, whether it’s Doc or any other player, it wasn’t meant to write all over the walls.” We are going to do things to celebrate our history, but this wasn’t the right way to get that started. If we allow this precedent, people will be writing all over the stadium.” Give me a break.
How cool would it be if every player who played for the Mets walked into the Ebbets Club signed this wall? I think that would be awesome. It would give the Mets something very unique and a reason to go visit that part of the stadium other than paying $15 for a hamburger. Just picture a dad and his son walking into this club and seeing this wall. Seeing autographs from Tommy Agee to David Cone to Todd Hundley to Bobby Jones. The dad explaining to his son who these players were, the history of the wall and telling the son it started with Dwight Gooden a player who won a ROY, Cy Young and WS title while on the Mets. It makes for a great moment for a dad and his son which is what baseball is all about.
Due to the Mets shortsighted thinking, a moment like this will never happen. The Mets will create a planned, artificial Mets Museum next year. If the Mets were sincere about this museum, it would have already been created. As I wrote the other day, the Mets seemed to have forgotten their history with the creation of Citi Field. Even when a Mets player wants to put some Mets history into the stadium, it gets erased. I just don’t get it.