The World According to Keitho

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Posts Tagged ‘1986 World Series’

World Series Memories: 1986

Posted by keithosaunders on October 26, 2017

Haley’s comet reached its closest point to earth, the U.S. traded arms for hostages with Iran, and a 20 year old Mike Tyson became the youngest heavyweight champion in history.

1986!

Alcoa presents: Keitho’s World Series Memories!

If one team personified the cocaine-infused, go-go 80s it was the New York Mets! Led by Keith Hernandez, Gary Carter, Daryl Strawberry, and Doc Gooden, they went through the regular season like Pablo Sandoval at an all you can eat buffet, polished off the Houston Mike Scott’s in 6 games, and advanced to a date with destiny with the Boston Redsox.

Game 6 found the Mets down 3 games to 2 in the Series and me ensconced at my best friend, Jeff’s house in the Bronx.

Most people think it was Ray Knight’s clutch hit and Mookie Wilson’s grounder through the legs of Bill Buckner that completed the most improbable comeback of all time, but I know what really happened.

At last it can be told.

You see, it came down to Jeff’s Yankee souvenir watch and Pez dispenser from hell. Little did poor, hapless Calvin Schiraldi realize that his implosion on the Shea mound was the result of Jeff having dangled the Yankee watch in front of the TV (alternating with the Pez dispenser) while shouting, “Callllvinnnn!”

It was the jinx, you see. The jinx.

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Shellshocked

Posted by keithosaunders on October 29, 2015

OK so that happened. What have we learned in the past couple of days?

  1. The Royals can hit fastballs
  2. The Mets picked the worst possible week to go into a collective team batting slump
  3. I can’t figure out how to tell wordpress I’m done with this list
  4. We should remember 1986 in which the Mets lost the first two games to the Redsox – AT HOME – only to take the Series in seven.  True they were aided by questionable managing by John McNamara, who eschewed taking gimpy Bill Buckner out of the game for defense in game six, but who’s to say that Ned Yost isn’t capable of a managerial boner or two?  What remains to be seen is whether this current Mets squad has the grittiness to overcome a legitimately good, young Royals team.
  5. I saw this stat today: Jacob deGrom threw 94 pitches last night, only three of which went for a swing and a miss.
  6. I believe Cueto’s start was an aberration and that the rest of the Royals rotation simply isn’t that good.
  7. The Mets are a Familia cantaloupe away from being tied in the Series.
  8. Sorry for the listacle

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The 1986 Mets — amazingly unlikeable

Posted by keithosaunders on June 26, 2011

When the Mets won the World Series in 1986 I, along with the rest of the city, was enthralled.  It did not quite compare to the unbridled joy I felt in 1981, when the Dodgers finally beat the Yankees, but it was close.  To this day the two game sixes, versus the Astros in the NLCS, and of course, the Redsox in the Series, are among the most dramatic, and improbable games I have ever seen. 

We in New York thought that the Mets of the ’80s would be good for at least another two or three Series victories, but of course it was not to be.  Dwight Gooden and Darryl Strawberry were taken down by drug and alcohol addiction, Gary Carter and Keith Hernandez were soon to be on the downside of their careers, and a series of bad trades, and unfortunate signings (can you say Kevin McReynolds?)  did the team in. 

Recently I watched a documentary called The Rise and Fall of the 1986 Mets.  As the title implies, it deals largely with the demons of that team — the drugs, fighting, and carousing.  They interviewed Strawberry, Gooden, Carter, among others.  Glaringly absent was Keith Hernandez, who any Met fan knows, was the leader of that team.  I can imagine that the Mets, who employ Keith as an announcer, nixed his involvement in a show that was going to be decidedly negative.

While it was a poorly produced documentary that had an agenda, it did bring up some valid points about this team.  The Mets of the mid-80s should have won more, or at the very least, been in position to win more.  

To hear Strawberry talk about what his routine was like. is eye-opening to say the least.  According to Straw, he would be out until the wee hours of the morning, drinking, snorting, hanging out with celebrities, and making the most of being the toast of the town.  He would arrive at the ballpark and pop six greenies before batting practice, washing them down with coffee, since that seemed to strengthen their effect.  After batting practice he would pop three more greenies right before the game.  Repeat and rinse for a 162 game season.  Gee, I wonder why his and Doc’s career fizzled so soon?

The worst was the story that Straw told of the plane trip coming back to New York from Houston after winning the pennant.  The entire team was smashed on champagne, and they began ripping up the seats from the plane, even managing to dislodge one.  They received a bill for $20,000 dollars, which Davey Johnson ripped up.  And you wonder why he was a considered a player’s manager…

The thing that bothered me about all of this is the way Straw looks back on all of this.  While he says he regrets his actions, and acknowledges the harm they did to his career, you can hear in his voice a kind of pride he took in those wild times.  To me it’s not funny to hear about vandalism.  I can understand being young, wanting to party, and sow wild oats, but when you put it in the context of the wasted potential, it’s merely sad. 

What a waste.  That team may have one day been mentioned in the same breath as the A’s of the early 70s, or the Big Red Machine.  Instead, they are a blip on baseball’s radar.  At best they are a testament to the gogo 80s; a shitty decade if there ever was one.

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