Being a huge baseball fan and following the Mets since the mid-1960's I was glad to get an advance copy of this book. It is not the normal fare in that the first 24 pages has a summary of the Mets' 50 year history followed by a series of lists (50 best Mets Players, Best Mets Teams, Best Mets Games, and even the Best Mets Activities (Bars to go to, road trips with the team, etc.).
Having read the book, I would have preferred a much more detailed history of the team and a lot fewer of the lists. Some of the greatest moments (the black cat by Ron Santo, the 10th inning of Game 6 against the Red Sox) are not even mentioned in the history and Game 6 of the 86 Series only got one paragraph in the Mets greatest games list.
Most of the important history of the Mets such as the day Tom Seaver was traded for Steve Henderson and three other players, seem to be only footnotes. I remember such great moments as the 1973 pennant chase and the drama of the game where Willie Mays was called out at home and both Willie and Yogi arguing vehemently with the home plate umpire. The excitement of Willie Mays coming home to the Mets and his dramatic first homerun seemed totally absent from the book.
The 50 All-time Mets listing was like the count-down on one of those MLB shows where they give you a list of the 50 greatest catches or 50 greatest games. Arguing about who was better between Tom Seaver and Doc Gooden is like trying to compare Willie Mays, Mickey Mantle and Duke Snider. Interesting for about a second but not too controversial.
The list of the best Met Games ever were all post-season games. Surely the writer could have done some research and come up with some regular season games. How about the game where the Mets beat the Cardinals to win their first post season berth ever? What about Mike Piazza's dramatic home-run (note it did get about two sentences in the history portion) against the Braves that lifted the City after 9/11? What about the drama of the Mets wearing the caps of the NYPD and NYFD at the game?
The book just touch on some of my fondest Baseball memories of the Mets but I wish that there was a lot more depth to this book and a little bit more research done by the writer.
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As the New York Mets celebrate their fiftieth anniversary of National League baseball, this rollicking chronicle recounts a half century of the team’s ups and downs. Chapters recount the best and worst teams; the greatest players; the most thrilling wins and most excruciating losses; the most memorable and forgettable teams in franchise history; and even a guide to appreciating the Mets, including tips on spring training as well as the best sports bars to see the Mets on TV without having to fight for the remote. Sidebars relating Mets lore (i.e., Jerry Seinfeld’s obsession with Keith Hernandez), colorful Mets characters (both players and fans alike), and stats on the best and worst of all things Mets further add to this celebration of the first fifty years of New York’s most Amazin’ and frustrating sports franchise.