Since the news first broke yesterday that the Mets released much beleaguered 2B Luis Castillo, many offered opinions.
Andy Martino, the Phillie Phanatic, suggests that there is racism with the fans about the treatment of Castillo. Impossible to prove with the love the fans have for Jose Reyes, Johan Santana, Mookie Wilson, Darryl Strawberry, Dwight Gooden, etc. Mets fans didn't like Castillo because he never appeared to be part of the team. That along with declining skills marked his fate.
Others have scribed that the Mets dropped Luis due to his salary and declining skills. Much more accurate, but still not the correct reason.
It has been discovered, by we here at 24 Hours..., that the reason Castillo was released was so that the real #1 for the Mets could be returned his rightful number. Mookie Wilson is now wearing the only number he should ever wear, the NY Mets #1.
Mookie is number one for a lot of reasons; his insatiable appetite to compete and hustle as a player, the way he was able to single-handedly turn a game around with his speed and superior base running ability, and probably the most popular Met with the fans.
Castillo isn't the worst player to wear #1 for the Mets. I will give that honor to Vince Coleman. I have never been a fan of Castillo, but I do realize at one point he was a good ball player.
Even with the muff against the Yankees, Castillo took the heat, and didn't hide. He stayed after answering every question thrown his way by reporters. That took guts. Delgado would never have done that.
Luis had to go. Was it due to poor play? Eroding skills? Bad clubhouse presence? No. It was with the re-hiring of Mookie Wilson that #1 had to be returned to it's rightful owner.