Several immediately upcoming events to know about with a Mets 50th anniversary flavor. Get out a shovel and dig a path to any and all of them.
• Sunday between 9 AM and 5 PM, MAB Celebrity Services is hosting 50 Years of Amazin’ Baseball at Citi Field’s Caesar’s Club. There’ll be Q&A, there’ll be autograph opportunities (or opportunitie$) and there’ll be a slew of Mets from Choo Choo Coleman to…what, Choo Choo Coleman’s not enough for ya? You almost NEVER see Choo Choo Coleman (let alone hear from him) at stuff like this, so here’s your chance to pay Original Met homage, bub. Guys named Seaver, Mays, Gooden, Strawberry and Hernandez will be among the myriad “other” attendees. Admission is $12 for adults, kids under 14 get in free. All the info is here.
• On Tuesday night at the Marriott Marquis in Times Square, Choo Choo and his 50th-anniversary friends (the aforementioned and then some) will be the featured attraction at the Baseball Assistance Team fundraising dinner. B.A.T. works to help baseball folks who could use it, and the marquee at the Marquis shows their brethren really come out for his annual event. More info on the massive Met presence here, with ticket information here.
• On Saturday, January 28, the Casey Stengel Chapter of SABR will have a 50th anniversary Mets flavor to it as well, with a special panel starring Buddy Harrelson and co-starring Huffington Post’s Billy Altman, Mets statistical analyst Ben Baumer and minor league video coordinator T.J. Barra and SABR NYC’s own Harvey Poris. George Vecsey, author of two great Mets-intensive books, will also be speaking. You can join the local chapter of the Society for American Baseball Research for its annual meeting at the New York Public Library (5th Avenue and 40th Street, 6th floor) at 10 AM; admission is $25. Visit the Stengel site here.
While not tied into the 50th anniversary, the Thurman Munson Dinner (Tuesday, January 31, at the Grand Hyatt around the corner from Grand Central) will be honoring a couple of 2012 Mets, Daniel Murphy and R.A. Dickey, along with 1973 Mets manager Yogi Berra. Other sports stars will be on hand as well. The dinner benefits AHRC New York City; you can read about the organization’s work here. For ticket information, please call 212/249-6188.
Though each is a worthwhile event for any Mets fan in winter, you should be advised if you find yourself snowed in at any point this weekend — or even if the sun comes out — you can get suitably lost in Best Mets, the latest handcrafted history produced by the prolific Matt Silverman. You know you can trust Matt as a leading source of Met retrospectives not just from the definitive coffee table volume, New York Mets: 50 Amazin’ Seasons — The Complete Illustrated History (which you’re cheating yourself out of if you don’t have it) but because the subtitle of his new book refers to the Mets as “AGONIZINGLY AMAZIN’” Only someone who really gets the Mets could have come up with that line.
Lots of lists in this paperback, lots of good humor, not a little angst, much thought and a hardcore Mets sensibility. Who could ask for anything more? Get your Best Mets here, your 50 Amazin’ Seasons here and all the Met Silverman there is to enjoy here.
Finally and obviously, we send the best wishes we have to offer to Florida for Gary Carter and his family. No. 8 is No. 1 in our hearts.