Hard to believe, but it’s really been a quarter century since the Amazingly Destitutes last won a World Series, and the Village Voice’s Alan Barra — prior to chronicling that squad’s legion of subsequent fuck ups —- wonders, “did I miss it, or has someone written tributes to the 1986 Mets that I didn’t see?…don’t people think silver anniversaries are important any more?”
Have the Mets’ miseries this past season — for the past few seasons, for that matter — drowned out memories of the one of the greatest teams and greatest seasons in baseball history?
I have a theory: The Mets’ fans get a pang when they remember the ’86 team because it was a dynasty that never happened.
They won 108 games, a total surpassed only by the 1975 Cincinnati Big Red Machine in the previous 77 years of baseball history. Where are the documentaries? Where are the specials? The Yankees have anniversaries about every eight months — where are the Mets’ fans when it comes to honoring their greatest team?
The 1986 New York Mets had more players than any other team who, at their peaks, were headed for the Hall of Fame and didn’t make it.
I can certainly understand why the present day ownership group would be hesitant to call attention to the stark contrast between 1986 and 2011’s Mets, but there’s other reasons for the lack of hoopla, some of them less than sinister. For starters, the summer of 2008 had no shortage of former Mets greats on hand to bid Shea Stadium goodbye ; fast forward 3 years later and bringing the likes of Gary Carter, Lenny Dykstra or Dwight Gooden to Flushing might have been a difficult, if not impossible thing to accomplish depending on Carter’s condition or Nails or Gooden’s legal situations.