Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Straw, Doc join Mets Hall of Fame

Addressing a common complaint among New York Mets fans, the team has decided to celebrate more of its history by expanding the Mets Hall of Fame. The team will induct Darryl Strawberry, Dwight "Doc" Gooden, manager Davey Johnson and general manager Frank Cashen, key components of the team's 1986 World Series championship.
Strawberry and Gooden are remembered fondly in both Queens and the Bronx for their contributions to winning teams. Doc pitched a no-hitter with the New York Yankees in 1996 while Straw was an important hitter during the Yankees late 1990s dynasty. But they first achieved superstardom with the Mets. Strawberry won the 1983 National League Rookie of the Year award after hitting 26 home runs. Gooden won the 1984 ROY award, following that up with the NL Cy Young award in 1985 after winning 24 games with a 1.53 ERA.
Of course, their time with the Mets was also when their drug and alcohol abuse problems began. Playing baseball in New York for that rough-and-tumble team wasn't the best environment for impressionable kids. But ultimately it was Strawberry and Gooden who made the choices that led them down that dark path and ruined what otherwise could have been legendary careers.
With these inductions, the Mets are addressing an issue important to their fans: the idea that the beautiful Citi Field celebrates the history of the Brooklyn Dodgers more than the Mets. I didn't really see this as an issue: the Jackie Robinson Rotunda is one of my favorite features of the new ballpark. But some fans were really bothered by this and it's nice to see the Mets being responsive to those concerns. Let's face it: at this point, they need to do everything they can to make the fans happy, including letting them watch two of their favorite Mets being honored this summer.

Thanks slgckgc via Wikipedia for the photos.

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