I am a huge fan of the new Mets stadium Citi Field and believe it to be one of the nicest looking stadiums around in the MLB. However, news leaked out yesterday of something rather unusual. While The Doc, Doc Gooden was attending the Citi Field opener the last week, he wanted to leave a little token of Mets history in the new ball park. While taking a visit to the Ebbets Club in the new stadium Doc signed a blank grey wall with a marker after a suggestion by a friend. So, Doc took the marker and laid out his John Hancock along with “84 R.O.Y, 85 Cy Young and 86 W.S. Champs” to represent his rookie of the year award in 1984, Cy Young award in 1985 and the New York Mets second World Series Championship in 1986.
Now one would think that the heads of Citi Field might be enthused with this personal touch of history and would lay some protective glass, or place some kind of memento at the site right? Wrong – Mets Vice President of media relations Jay Horwitz is quoted saying, “It’s a brand-new building… No one is supposed to write on the wall. It’s going to be erased.” With this news reaching the media, Mets fans grew quite irate with Horwitz and Citi Field. Despite Citi Field’s classic look and fantastic features, it does very little to honor the New York Mets. The park represents the amazing story, life and career of Jackie Robinson with the Jackie Robinson Rotunda and also houses statues of great players throughout history who never played for the Mets. Perhaps that’s what Doc was attempting to change, perhaps Doc wanted to leave a piece of history from the team that is actually playing in the stadium.
Critics have gone as far as stating that Citi Field is not honoring the great fans and history of the New York Mets, but rather honoring the Wilpons (New York Mets Owners Family) and the team that they wish they could have owned – The Dodgers. I can’t go as far as agreeing with that statement, nevertheless I do believe that there should be Mets history in the new Mets park and not the history of the teams that lead to the Mets birth. The Robinson Rotunda is a great idea and a beautiful attribute to the stadium, but why not leave it at that and have Shea’s Club rather than Ebbets? How about having statues of Mookie, Keith, Piazza, Cone, Gooden, and even throw in Rey-O. I can’t fathom why the Mets would allow Horwitz’s position on the matter to prevent this token of appreciation and history from remaining in the ballpark. Sorry Doc, I thank you for your attempt of showing what Mets history looks like and wish the organization would reconsider their harsh decision on this first hand piece of history.