It was 25 years ago this week (the 22nd actually) that the Mets by the Numbers project first published on the Internet. The earliest versions of the site seem to have vanished but here’s an archived page from 2001 where I discuss the arrival of Jerrod Riggan and the demotion of Donne Wall. And then the return of Donne Wall. It was riveting stuff.
When I started this project I was single; today I’m married almost 20 years and my son is picking a college. I was anxious back then to participate in this new internet thing and was full of energy from the excitement of falling back in love baseball again after taking much of the 90s off.
I had been turned off by the fall of the Mets would-be dynasty. I was living outside the Sportschannel/WOR belt, and I was angry about the strike. When I moved to NYC, the Mets helped me find my way in the city and I fell hard for Bobby Valentine. I’d spent a few months combing through yearbooks and scorecards with the idea I could find the uni number of every one of the roughly 600 guys who played for the Mets through then. I badly missed that goal when I first published but it was better than what else existed at the time, which was nothing.
Against every rule of writing a blog, I’ve gone through period of frequent updates and months of nothing, then again “blogs” didn’t really exist in 1999. Purely by coincidence this site launched within weeks of the Ultimate Mets Database and when Paul Lukas started writing about sports uniforms for the Village Voice. Countless websites have come and gone since then, all three survive (although Paul is planning to retire).
Happy birthday to all of us.