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2017 Topps Series 1 Mets

I know I’m late to the party, but I just got my 2017 Topps Series 1 Mets team set in the mail this week.

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Player selection is pretty good, considering Topps has to save some recognizable names for Series 2 in a few months. I haven’t double-checked the 40-man roster lately, but I think everyone pictured is still part of the Mets’ organization. (I’m puzzled by the decision to include Matt Reynolds over printing a T.J. Rivera rookie card, but I can easily overlook it since it’s the biggest head-scratcher.)

Continue reading “2017 Topps Series 1 Mets”

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Subway Series momentos

Sure, MLB unveiled this year’s spring training uniforms today and Topps released the first baseball cards of 2017 this week. We can totally talk about those in the comments if you want.

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But I’m going to show you a couple of 17-year-old baseball cards I got from my friend Vinny back in December. (And wow, I didn’t really want to think about it being 17 years since the Mets and Yankees played in the World Series.)

At least in the New York metropolitan area, it was a really BIG DEAL that our two teams were playing in the Fall Classic. I had pretty much gotten away from following baseball after the 1994-95 work stoppage, but the excitement of the possible Subway Series developing had me glued to the playoffs in 2000. Looking back at the television ratings, I don’t think the rest of the country really cared for the match up that much. Continue reading “Subway Series momentos”

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The New York Mets’ 2016 baseball season lasted 163 games, ending last Wednesday when Jeurys Familia gave up a three-run homer to Conor Gillaspie in the ninth inning of the National League Wild Card Game. The Mets hitters couldn’t figure out how to deal with San Francisco Giants’ ace Madison Bumgarner, who pitched a shutout.

I won’t lie – it was a frustrating loss. But several days later, I’m willing to tip my cap to Bumgarner and the Giants. They were the better team on Wednesday, though they’re standing on the brink of elimination from the National League Division Series. The Giants ran into a team that’s better than them in the Chicago Cubs. That’s how baseball is supposed to work…and sometimes it does.

Terry Collins took a team to the postseason, if only for three hours, with a rotation that included unheralded rookies Robert Gsellman and Seth Lugo, along with ageless veteran Bartolo Colon and the Mets’ one enduring ace, Noah Syndergaard. He patched together an infield that included just one Opening Day starter. And somehow, he kept everyone believing that a playoff push was possible when common sense said to start planning for 2017. If that’s not worthy of Manager of the Year consideration, I don’t know what is.

So now we wait and watch to see who will be crowned the 2016 World Series Champ, even though it won’t be the Mets. I’m rooting for Daniel Murphy and his Washington Nationals teammates, but I could see myself switching over to Justin Turner‘s Dodgers if the Nats don’t make it.

The Mets have a host of important roster decisions to make this winter…the team that starts 2017 may not bear much resemblance to the one that finished 2016. That’s ok, and it makes for an interesting hot stove season.

Meanwhile, I have a bunch of baseball cards to sort, checklists to update and autograph request letters to write.

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Darth Vader wants you to join the Mets Empire… or else?

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I picked this pin up during my last visit to Citi Field, but I’m not sure what it’s really trying to say (beyond, “hey, Star Wars fans… give us your money.”)

See, the Yankees are supposed to be the (evil) Empire, with their Death Stars and Stormtroopers and what not… right? But here’s Darth Vader, demanding your allegiance to the Mets.

I’m definitely overthinking things… a quick check of eBay reveals MLB partnered with Disney for Star Wars pins of the month at other ballparks, too. (Though curiously, Vader is conspicuously absent from the Yankees’ set.)

August’s Mets pin featured Stormroopers, while June’s had C-3PO exhorting you to “Let New York win”… presumably there were also pins for April, May and July.

If you like weird collectables or share a fondness for both Star Wars and the Mets, these might be worth tracking down. I think I’ll save my money for the Rogue One collectibles coming out at the end of the week & the end-of-season Mets baseball cards.

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Newark Bears' former home to be demolished

A night game at Bears & Eagles Riverfront Stadium {Photo credit: Paul Hadsall)
A night game at Bears & Eagles Riverfront Stadium {Photo credit: Paul Hadsall)

A New York-based developer purchased the site of Bears & Eagles Riverfront Stadium for #23 million, according to a NJ Advance Media report. The underutilized ballpark, which last hosted professional baseball in 2013, will be demolished to make way for a mixed-use, high-rise tower.

“This property is so significant,” said Baye Adofo-Wilson, the city’s Deputy Mayor for Economic and Housing Development. The stadium “was part of a previous attempt to revitalize the downtown…It didn’t work out. We had to come up with a new idea.”

While I’m sad to see the wrecking ball come for a place where I have happy memories, the City of Newark will undoubtedly benefit more from the property being put to more productive use.

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St. Patrick's Day caps

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(MLB.com Shop image)

Major League Baseball and the Mets are hoping that you’ll buy a St. Patrick’s Day cap for your collection.

At $37.99, I think I can live without a cap that’s really only wearable one day out of the year. It does look nice, though.

MLB.com’s shop is promising that ‘special event item’ orders will ship by March 10th, so you may actually get your cap in time to wear it this year.

(And if you look around, you can find a promo code for free shipping today – some restrictions apply.)

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Trenton Thunder announce 2016 promo schedule

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Some Trenton Thunder players watch a game from the dugout in this file photo (Photo credit: Paul Hadsall)

The Trenton Thunder released some information about their 2016 promotional schedule today. Yankees fans will be looking forward to Luis Severino, Aaron Judge and Greg Bird bobblehead giveaways this season.

I’m not positive, but it looks like the annual baseball card team set giveaway might not be happening this year. Instead, there’s a Hometown Heroes card set giveaway scheduled for June 30th.

There’s a Star Wars Night on May 25th… and that’s really about it for things that might get me to make a special effort to go to a particular Trenton Thunder game this year.

For more information, check out the Trenton Thunder website.