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50 years ago (1968) Gil Hodges becomes Mets manager

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  • 50 years ago (1968) Gil Hodges becomes Mets manager

    Everyone:

    50 years ago (the 1968 baseball season) Gil Hodges became the Mets manager.

    The team began a climb to respectability going 73-89 with a core of good young players that also had some decent veterans.

    Who then knew about the Mets Miracle that would come to pass in 1969?

    I was of single digit age then - just old enough to understand how interesting that the Mets were then. In my instance I can thank
    the hobby of collecting baseball cards for getting me interested in the Mets and the game of baseball itself.

    This NY Daily News article by Christian Red 3/27 titled "The Miracle Man! 50 years ago, Gil Hodges took reins of the Mets and the
    rest is just Amazin'" will likely bring back memories to Met fans that remember the interesting changes the Mets experienced in 1968.
    http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/ba...icle-1.3898817

    Most everyone remembers the euphoria of 1969 - but what happened in 1970 and 1971 in which the Mets went 83-79 both years?
    ​​​​​​Was it changes made in those years through trades or other means? Should the 1969 team have been kept together as much as
    possible remembering the chemistry that team had? I noted as many long time Mets followers had that the 1969 team had kept
    in touch with one another in an extended family type relationship - winning a championship is something that is an ultimate memory
    that never can be taken away - or for that matter taken for granted. As young as I was in 1969 I was old enough to see that the 1969
    Mets were something special and remember the interest fans of all ages had taken in the Mets - something I will not forget.

    As most here know Gil Hodges died tragically young of a heart attack just before the 1972 season began at just 47 years old.
    Many of us wonder how the Mets would have evolved during the 1970s had that not happened and Gil remained manager.

    I do feel that Gil Hodges does belong in the Baseball Hall of Fame. He may not have huge numbers from his playing career
    but he does have being a successful manager going for him - what happened in 1969 spoke for itself. He was respected
    by many in baseball over time and was a beloved member of the 1950s era Brooklyn Dodgers.

    Long Island Mike
    Last edited by Long Island Mike; 03-29-2018, 02:31 AM.

  • #2
    Yes, I was a10 year old Lawn Guylander in 1968 and remember the justifiable credit that Gil Hodges received for the emergence of Cleon Jones, Jerry Grote and Jerry Koosman. Although the 68 Amazins' were a weak offensive team, even by the standards of the ERA era and playing in Shea. However, a young talent nucleus played hard. A lot of folks, including myself and the late, great sportswriter, Jack Zanger, thought that the '69 Mets with the addition of the Expos the decline of the Phillies and the beginning of divisional play; could reach .500. What followed was a miracle. As a player Hodges' #s were very good. Indeed, the cliche', "perennial All-Star" is fitting and Hodges did have 2 great years. I do feel that Hodges is deserving as the N.L. of Hodges era had few exceptional players among 1st. sackers Ted Klusewski was a stupendous player at his peak but his run of greatness was brief as chronic sciatic hampered and eventually ended his career. The root of the Miracle Mets was the competence of 1968.
    Last edited by Steven Gallanter; 04-02-2018, 03:11 AM.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Long Island Mike View Post
      Everyone:

      50 years ago (the 1968 baseball season) Gil Hodges became the Mets manager.

      The team began a climb to respectability going 73-89 with a core of good young players that also had some decent veterans.

      Who then knew about the Mets Miracle that would come to pass in 1969?

      I was of single digit age then - just old enough to understand how interesting that the Mets were then. In my instance I can thank
      the hobby of collecting baseball cards for getting me interested in the Mets and the game of baseball itself.

      This NY Daily News article by Christian Red 3/27 titled "The Miracle Man! 50 years ago, Gil Hodges took reins of the Mets and the
      rest is just Amazin'" will likely bring back memories to Met fans that remember the interesting changes the Mets experienced in 1968.
      http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/ba...icle-1.3898817

      Most everyone remembers the euphoria of 1969 - but what happened in 1970 and 1971 in which the Mets went 83-79 both years?
      ​​​​​​Was it changes made in those years through trades or other means? Should the 1969 team have been kept together as much as
      possible remembering the chemistry that team had? I noted as many long time Mets followers had that the 1969 team had kept
      in touch with one another in an extended family type relationship - winning a championship is something that is an ultimate memory
      that never can be taken away - or for that matter taken for granted. As young as I was in 1969 I was old enough to see that the 1969
      Mets were something special and remember the interest fans of all ages had taken in the Mets - something I will not forget.

      As most here know Gil Hodges died tragically young of a heart attack just before the 1972 season began at just 47 years old.
      Many of us wonder how the Mets would have evolved during the 1970s had that not happened and Gil remained manager.

      I do feel that Gil Hodges does belong in the Baseball Hall of Fame. He may not have huge numbers from his playing career
      but he does have being a successful manager going for him - what happened in 1969 spoke for itself. He was respected
      by many in baseball over time and was a beloved member of the 1950s era Brooklyn Dodgers.

      Long Island Mike
      Compare Gil's numbers to Tony Perez. Offensively they are very close. basically, Gil's 162 game average was 29 hr 100 rbi .273 average. Tony was 22 /96/.279
      When Gil retired he had the most homerss ever hit by a righty in the NL. Tony drove in 100 runs 7 times; Gil drove in 100 7 years in a row. (Gil did miss 2 years in WWII.)

      https://www.baseball-reference.com/p...odgegi01.shtml https://www.baseball-reference.com/p...erezto01.shtml

      What happened in 1970? Well, the Mets , Cubs and Pirates had a 3 way dogfight. Tom Seaver was cruising along at 16-6. He slumped a bit , losing 6 of his last 8. Also, the Mets lost 6 of 7 in late September to the Pirates : McAndrew lost 3-2, Gentry lost 2-1, Chance lost 4-3, Seaver lost 4-3, McAndrew lost 2-1 ( very little offense). They win these games , they win the NL east and the Pirates finish 3rd.

      Before the season started, trading Amos Otis for Joe Foy . The Mets could have used Otis to give Donn Clendenon some support. In January 1970, GM Johnny Murphy died of a heart attack at the age of 61. He was the architect of the '69 team.

      I would put Gil into Cooperstown as a player, not as a manager.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Long Island Mike View Post
        I do feel that Gil Hodges does belong in the Baseball Hall of Fame. He may not have huge numbers from his playing career
        but he does have being a successful manager going for him
        - what happened in 1969 spoke for itself. He was respected
        by many in baseball over time and was a beloved member of the 1950s era Brooklyn Dodgers.

        Long Island Mike
        It worked for Joe Torre, why not Hodges?
        They call me Mr. Baseball. Not because of my love for the game; because of all the stitches in my head.

        Comment

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