I got into the Mets in the mid-80s. 1987 was my first full season. That group represented my youngest youth. Turn the page into the 1990s and both the Mets and I were finding our respective ways. They sucked, and I was in those awkward early pre-teen and teenage years. There was a player strike just weeks before I left for boarding school. Sounds about right.
There was a resurgence in the team when I was back in the neighborhood and in college. Seems right, doesn't it? They were having fun on the field and I was having fun in college. Games were also more accessible to me, both in person and on TV. 8 games at Shea in 1999 for me was a record back then. It might not seem like much to some of you now (and seems low to me today). They swooned as I left college and entered the real world. Then as I was establishing myself as an adult on my own, they bounced back too. These were the Mike Piazza years.
He's a bridge into the modern era for me. I started vacationing in Port St. Lucie every March in 2004, and Piazza was still with the team. That autograph before my last game that trip was the highlight. I started going to games about once a month, on and off with ticket plans, in 2006. He wasn't there for the payoff though, marking a new era in Mets history. And a new era for me, growing with the Mets again.
In 2016, he's a Hall of Famer.
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