As you probably heard somewhere, the Mets are assembling in St. Lucifer right now in anticipation of the first workouts of spring training. I can tell because my copy of the Maple Street Press 2011 Mets Annual arrived at my home yesterday, and ought to be at area newsstands any minute now. Greg Spira and Matthew Silverman, who handle the heavy lifting for this book, do a great job as always setting an overarching editorial theme — FRESH START — and soliciting contributions to cover it from many angles.I offer a peice examining the Mets’ fickle posture on free agency over the years, and its ramifications both good and bad. Other writers will take you into the Mets’ minor league system, introduce you to the celebrity eggheads in the front office, look back at the 25th anniversary of 1986, and more. You can order the book at the MSP website or look for it at area retail stores. It’s editors, writers and other Met fans are gathering for a Mets viewing party and reading April 5 at the former Bobby Vee’s in Corona.
On the subject of self-promotion, the nice folks at The Happy Recap had me on their weekly radio show the other night. We discussed uniforms, numbers and my bold comparison of Darryl Strawberry to Mickey Mantle (in an emotional sense). The link to the webcast is here, I come on near the 22:00 mark and hang out for 15 minutes or so (just load the 2/13 link).
It’s likely this week that we’ll see how the Mets tackle the No. 55 logjam, with both Chris Young and coach Ken Oberkfell assigned those digits according to Mets records. In the meantime, nonroster invitees Kirk Nieuwenhuis (72), Willie Harris (22), Jason Pridie (20), Kai Gronauer (71), John Lujan (69 – really?) and Tobi Stoner (61) have been assigned new numbers. Pridie’s assignment puts a potential cap on Ike Davis’s potential switch to No. 20 — a move that would also free up Stoner’s former No. 29, as unlikely as it seems.