Thursday, March 5, 2009

Remembering our other 3rd baseman Robin Ventura.

David Wright is the Mets 3rd baseman now and will be with the Mets in the future. He is of course probably going to be the Mets greatest 3rd baseman if he is not already. Sorry Roy Staiger Fans.

There was another guy who gave Mets some great memories just a couple of years before David took over at 3rd. From 1999-2001 we had Robin Ventura.

Ventura was signed before the '99 season on December 2, 1998. I can still remember the day it was announced on the radio. I happened to be in the car on the thruway driving home and was pretty excited that the Mets had landed him. He was a great defensive player and someone who could hit for power. He had played for the White Sox for 10 years. Where he hit over 160 home runs and drove in at least 90 rbi’s 6 times.

He did not let the Mets down in 99. He had a career year in rbi’s with 120, a 301 batting average and his highest slugging percentage of .529. He also won the gold glove that year as well. He was one of the leaders in the Mets clubhouse.

Of course people remember Mr. Ventura and his grand slam single in game 5 of the NLCS against the Braves.

Robin had a humorous side as well. He came out of the dugout in a Piazza Jersey during a rain delay when they were playing the Yankees. With the fake mustache he mimicked Piazza batting stance then ran around the bases and did a belly flop across home plate.

Or the time he was interviewed and asked what he be doing if he was not playing baseball and Robin Dead panned that he wanted to be a blimp pilot.

The Mets traded him after the 01 season to the Yankees for David Justice. Ventura by then had declined in his offense where he was hitting just .230

He finished out his career with the Dodgers in 2004.

He has spent his retirement coaching his 4 kids in various sports in his home town of Santa Maria Ca. He was offered a coaching job when Jim Tracy was managing the Pirates but he turned it down. He was voted in the College hall of fame.

He also has done some broadcasting of local sporting events in his home town area.

Of course Mets fans saw him last September when they said goodbye to Shea.

Robin Ventura did not play for the Mets long but he does have a legacy of being one of the few good 3rd basemen the Mets have ever had.

Thanks to a borderline stalker of Robin Ventura in the name Of Holly who has a very impressive collection of stories and a ton of pictures of Mr. Ventura which you can check out here at the
Bird Watcher.


metsfan73 said...

And lest we forget that Ventura was the one who started the MOJO with the Mets. He would play the Doors LA Woman, and he (Ventura) was known as Mr. Mojo Risin'. Ventura was a real solid move for the Mets back in '99. I too remember when they got him, because the Mets and Ventura had been rumored for years before they actually acquired him.

Great post!

Anonymous said...

I want to know why no one has mentioned that wonderfully amazing picture. When the hell was that taken? And why? and how? Like. It is amazing.