Tag Archive for Willie Harris

Always Go Hard

Thanks to commenter Shorty for the tip in the below thread recognizing that Blaine Boyer on Saturday earned the first save in Mets history by a player wearing No. 23. That’s just the kind of useless fact we’ll need plenty of to get us though the 2011 season. Here’s another: Willie Harris, who might be the Mets MVP if the season ended today, appears to be the first player in Mets history who had his uni number pre-tattooed.

As you can see in these photos, Willie has the No. 22 prominently (and permanently) displayed on his right forearm. If I had to guess, I’d say he got this ink while a member of the Braves in 2007: Harris moved onto Washington in 2008 as a free agent: The Nats initially issued Harris No. 1, but he changed back to 22 in 2009 (Brian Sanches wore 22 for the Nats then). I found some photos of Harris in a Nats uni with the same mark. Willie was fortunate to have come upon No. 22 with the Mets while it was available: It belonged last season to released mercurial lefty reliever Raul Valdes, whom I’ll always remember for contributions during that ridiculous 20-inning affair with the Cardinals a year ago.

If Harris had uni numbers tattooed onto his body prior to 2007, they might be hard to find. It’s conceivable that 22 was once just plain 2 (his number with Boston in 2006) but prior to that Harris wore 12, 13 and 1 with the White Sox and 40 with the Orioles during his rookie year of 2001. Sports Illustrated noted Harris’ many tattoos back in 2005:

HE HAS an eclectic mix of tattoos, highlighting his dedication to his family and his faith in God. “Everything is something that I either love or that inspires me,” says Harris, 27. He has, among other things, the names of his daughter, Arianna, and mother, Lene, and a tiger on his left arm. “That’s kind of the way I am, the way I go about the game,” he says. “Like with the eye of the tiger, always go hard.”

Don’t forget: If you’re looking for a place to watch the Mets-Phils game Tuesday, come over to the Holiday Inn LaGuardia for an Amazin’ Tuesday Met Together sponsored by Maple Street Press and its 2011 Mets Annual. There will be food, drinks, giveaways, Mets discussion, Mets fans and the Mets game on the big screens. Details here, see you there.

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Batter Up

Hey, check it out! The Mets issued a new roster loaded with new numbers. Interesting additions include Ronny Paulino wearing No. 9; Chin-Lung Hu at 17; pitchers Taylor Buchholz (33) Chris Capuano 38 although we argued for 47);  and D.J. Carrasco on track to become the first No. 77 in Mets history. A group of contenders for roster slots is as usual dressed in the 60s, and the coaching staff includes new numbers for Dave Hudgens (52); Mookie Wilson (53 – really?); Ken Oberkfell (55); Jon Debus (56); and bullpen catcher  Rafael Arroyo (58).

Still anticipating new issues for pitcher Chris Young and outfielder Scott Hairston, the latest additions to the squad, as well as uniforms for non-roster invitees: Pitchers Boof Bonser, Taylor Tankersley and Michael O’Connor; infielder Russ Adams; and outfielder Willie Harris. Pitcher Ryota Igarashi, who was dropped from the 40-man roster and waived earlier this winter, is not listed with the NRIs but we’d expect to see him in 18 at camp. Ike Davis is still listed in 29, but 20 is vacant, so watch that space.

Current numerical roster (recent additions in bold):

1 Luis Castillo, 2B
2 Justin Turner, 2B
3 Luis Hernandez, INF
4 Vacant
5 David Wright, 3B
6 Nick Evans, OF
7 Jose Reyes, SS
8 Vacant
9 Ronny Paulino, C
10 Terry Collins, manager
11 Ruben Tejada, INF
12 Vacant
13 Mike Nickeas, C
14 Retired
15 Carlos Beltran, OF
16 Angel Pagan, OF
17 Chin-Lung Hu, INF 
18 Ryota Igarashi, P
19 Vacant
20 Vacant
21 Lucas Duda, OF
22 Vacant
23 Vacant
24 Vacant
25 Vacant
26 Fernando Martinez, OF
27 Vacant
28 Daniel Murphy, 1B-2B-OF
29 Ike Davis, 1B
30 Josh Thole, C
31 Vacant
32 Jenrry Mejia, P
33 Taylor Buchholz, P
34 Mike Pelfrey, P
35 Dillon Gee, P
36 Manny Acosta, P
37 Retired
38 Chris Capuano, P
39 Bobby Parnell, P
40 Vacant
41 Retired
42 Retired
43 R.A. Dickey, P
44 Jason Bay, OF
45 Vacant
46 Oliver Perez, P
47 Vacant
48 Pat Misch, P
49 Jon Niese, P
50 Vacant
51 Chip Hale, 3rd base Coach
52 Dave Hudgens, hitting coach
53 Mookie Wilson, first base coach
54 Dave Racaniello, Bullpen Catcher
55 Ken Oberkfell, bench coach
56 Jon Debus, bullpen coach
57 Johan Santana, P
58 Rafael Arroyo, bullpen catcher
59 Dan Warthen, pitching coach
60-62 Vacant
63 Jordanny Valdespin, INF
64 Josh Stinson, P
65 Zach Lutz, INF
66 Armando Rodriguez, P
67 Manny Alvarez, P
68 Brad Emaus, 2B

69 Vacant
70 Pedro Beato, P
71-74 Vacant
75 Francisco Rodriguez, P
76 Vacant
77 DJ Carrasco, P
78-99 Vacant

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