Just a quick update here to tell you something all of us already know: The Brett Baty thing was a thing, and it couldn’t have gone better. He wore No. 22 which I also had associated with him because as noted in the comments below by Gene (and confirmed by Matt), he wore 22 in Binghamton and knew also that finding him assigned 2 in Syracuse seemed unusual to me, but only because I didn’t know how recently he’d been assigned there but it was much less that I thought. I also knew he was considered something like Wright but seemed to have been surprised then to find he batted lefthanded. I can adjust for that a little and say he also resembles a young Robin Ventura.
The other thing I’ll mention here is that I’m old and decrepit enough to have a specific memory that Benny Ayala became the first Met ever to hit a home run in his first at-bat and that means I actually have been alive and paying attention to all five.
|18||Benny Ayala||Aug. 27, 1974||Solo HR 2nd inning off LHP Tom Wilson at Shea. Mets 4, Astros 2||Ayala was traded to St. Louis on March 30, 1977 for a minor league infielder Dog Clarey, a day after it was revealed that GM Joe McDonald had been driving while intoxicated when his car collided with a bus a few days earlier. McDonald said he hadn’t been drinking prior to the accident but had drinks the night before. He said he was out to pick blueberries to put on breakfast cereal when the accident occurred the following morning.|
|20||Mike Fitzgerald||September 13, 1983||Solo HR, 2nd inning off RHP Tony Ghelfi at Veterans Stadium. Mets 5, Phillies 1||The pitcher who surrendered Fitzgerald’s mighty blast, Tony Ghelfi, never pitched in another MLB game. It was only his third appearance in one.|
|25||Kazuo Matsui||April 6, 2004||Solo HR, top of the 1st off RHP Russ Ortiz at Turner Field. Mets 7, Braves 2||Matsui knew how to enter a room. Not only was his first hit a home run, his first pitch he saw he put over the fence. He’d twice more hit a home run on opening day, including in 2005 (2-run HR off ex-Met Paul Wilson of the Reds) and the following year, an inside-the-park home run off Jake Peavy in Petco Park.|
|27||Mike Jacobs||Aug. 21, 2005||Pinch-hit for Juan Padilla, 3-run HR, bottom of the 5th, off Esteban Loiaza at Shea. Nationals 7, Mets 4||Jacobs’ home run saved his place on the roster and he would hit .310/.375/.710//1.085 through the end of the year. He’d later be a key piece in the Carlos Delgado trade.|
|22||Brett Baty||Aug. 17, 2022||2-run HR, top of the 2nd off Jake Odorizzi at Truist Park. Mets 9, Braves 7||Baty was a 12th-overall pick. His parents and sister had driven from Texas to be in the park and were on camera as he hit it. Be on the lookout for a MLB “Enjoy The Show” commercial like they made from this one.|