News: No Plans to Retire Piazza's Number

In a report in the New York Post, Mark Hale says that the Mets have no plans to retire Mike Piazza‘s number at Citi Field.

The Mets released a statement about honoring Piazza on Thursday:

“There are a number of great players from our team’s past that we will honor at Citi Field. That process is under way as we have begun installation of photographic imagery of famous Mets — including Mike — and historic moments in team history on the Field and Promenade Levels. Mike is one of the greatest Mets ever, and we certainly will recognize his significant impact on our franchise and his meaningful connection to our fans in a special way at Citi Field.”

…simply put, Piazza is the greatest hitter in team history and the greatest hitting catcher in baseball history…he has become the face of this team’s past and tradition along with Tom Seaver who is clearly the best pitcher in franchise history…

…so if Seaver is the best pitcher in team history and Piazza is the best hitter in team history, why won’t the Mets retire Piazza’s number…

News: Pearlman on Piazza and Steroids

According to Deadspin.com, in his new book, The Rocket that Fell to Earth, about Roger Clemens, author Jeff Pearlman writes of Mike Piazza and steroids, saying:

“According to several sources, when the subject of performance enhancing was broached with reporters he especially trusted, Mike Piazza fessed up. “Sure, I use,” he told one. “But in limited doses, and not all that often.” (Piazza has denied using performance-enhancing drugs, but there has always been speculation.)

Whether or not it was Piazza’s intent, the tactic was brilliant: By letting the media know, of the record, Piazza made the information that much harder to report. Writers saw his bulging muscles, his acne-covered back. They certainly heard the under-the-breath comments from other major league players, some who considered Piazza’s success to be 100 percent chemically delivered.

“He’s a guy who did it, and everybody knows it,” Reggie Jefferson, the longtime major league first baseman, told Pearlman.

“It’s amazing how all these names, like Roger Clemens, are brought up, yet Mike Piazza goes untouched.”

Pearlman quotes an anonymous major league veteran, who played against Piazza as saying, “There was nothing more obvious than Mike on steroids… Everyone talked about it, everyone knew it.”

Pearlman adds, “When asked, on a scale of 1 to 10, to grade the odds that Piazza had used performance enhancers,” the player told him, “A 12.”

…i’m not sure what to say… i mean, i think i have been pretty clear by now that i just don’t care about the past and steroids… it is what it is… sadly, i just assume every one did it, and i move on… knowing pearlman is true or false will not alter how much i enjoyed watching the late 90’s Mets

…also, i just can’t tolerate the phony outrage from fans and media who do their best to care about this ‘issue,’ because i know in my heart of hearts that if piazza stepped to the plate against Mariano Rivera in the 2000 World Series, then stepped out, admitted he used steroids and then stepped back in the box, the same number of fans would have cheered him on regardless… so, how can i pretend to deal with this now…

…all i care about today is that the game as a business does its best to keep itself clean and on the level, assuming it wants to be clean and on the level… this way, i know the opposition is equal to my team, and, additionally, so men who do not want to hurt their bodies can have the same opportunity to succeed as people who might be willing to take that risk…

Update: Piazza in the House, talks Coaching

DSC_0282I followed the beat writers over to Field 6 this morning to listen as they spoke with Mike Piazza, who is coaching with Team Italy, who is in Tradition Field to take on the Mets B-squad team.

The minute he started talking I had a huge smile on my face, unable to not think of the late 90s.  I loved that team.

Also, he was drinking a tall Starbucks coffee, with wrap-around sunglasses, and still sporting the ‘duck tail, bushy hair. 

To me, he will be always be the definition of dorky-cool.

Piazza said he is using this experience to get his feet wet, and re-connect with the game of baseball, without the pressure of being a player, to see if DSC_0273he’d be interested in returning as coach at some point in his future.

Asked if he could one day return to the game as a coach, Piazza said, “I’m not gonna rule anything out.  I think this is a good first step, without a huge commitment.”

He fielded a few more questions and talked about Italy, his heritage, coaching and his family – then said, ‘Alright, guys, I’m gonna go watch batting practice,’ and wisely walked away before any one had the chance to ask him about other more topical subjects in the news.

Note: Piazza to Write Memoir

According to the Associated Press, Mike Piazza is writing a memoir.

Of the book which will be released in 2010, Piazza said:

“I look forward to having the chance to take people behind the scenes and to talk about the many great people and characters I’ve played with and for over the course of my career.”

Note: Piazza on That Metal Show

On Wednesday, October 8, Mike Piazza will be part of a roundtable discussion on VH1’s debut episode of That Metal Show, ‘a celebration of all things hard rock and heavy metal.’

If you would like tickets to the event, in New York City, send a picture, your name, phone, address and guest information to this address.

Opinion: Seaver, Piazza, and Who Else

Yesterday, the Mets announced that Mike Piazza and Tom Seaver will be among several of the team’s former players who are expected to be in attendance on Sept. 28, when the Mets play their final regular-season game in Shea.

This is great news, because, frankly, I’m sick and tired of the Yankees having a monopoly on Tradition in New York City.

The thing is, if the Mets are going to welcome people like Seaver and Piazza, and Keith Hernandez and Darryl Strawberry, I hope they also invite people like Gregg Jefferies, Doc Gooden, Wally Backman and Todd Hundley.

I mean, if it’s a night about honoring the stadium’s on-field past, then it would be unfortunate to ignore certain people for things that they may have done off-field, which ended up putting them in bad standing with the team’s owners.

Fact is, as a kid, Backman’s on-field presence and style was an inspiration to me; Gooden was a God; I had a Hundley jersey, and paid admission to specifically see him play; and I emulated Jefferies’s swing.

These guys, among many others, though not as prominent as Seaver and Piazza, are still a huge part of why I root for the Mets today – and I hope they are not ignored.

News: Piazza Coming To Shea

According to Jim Baumbach at Newsday, Mike Piazza will be in attendance for a special ceremony during the final weekend of the regular season to honor Shea.

Baumbach quotes a person familiar with the situation as saying, “The invitation went out and he accepted. He’ll be there”

…it would be great to see mike again, and he deserves to be part of the celebration…but i can’t imagine anything being better than his last game as a Met…grown men were crying like babies…

…added to by Mike Nichols

…terrific job by the Mets and mike…i was hoping the Mets would have done more to honor their former players this season during each home game when they unveil the number the of games remaining at shea, but they seemed to hand those duties off to sponsors and others involved in the franchise…