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Greg Prince and Jason Fry
Faith and Fear in Flushing made its debut on Feb. 16, 2005, the brainchild of two longtime friends and lifelong Met fans.

Greg Prince discovered the Mets when he was 6, during the magical summer of 1969. He is a Long Island-based writer, editor and communications consultant. Contact him here.

Jason Fry is a Brooklyn writer whose first memories include his mom leaping up and down cheering for Rusty Staub. Check out his other writing here.

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Terrific Birthday Greetings

Sure, you could’ve sent Tom Seaver a birthday card today — or at least written “Happy Birthday, Tom” on a Post-It note and stuck it to the cork atop a bottle of GTS Cabernet Sauvignon en route to toasting the Franchise — but there’s a better way to greet the day the Met who gave us 25 wins in ’69 turns 69.

Scroll toward the bottom of Baseball-Reference’s most Terrific player page and treat yo’self to the portrait of a leader…a pitching leader.

Tom Seaver pitched 20 big-league seasons. In how many of those, do you suppose, did he not finish in the Top 10 of some positive pitching category? Well, there was 1982, when he was dealing with injuries in Cincinnati. Then there was 1986, when he was approaching the end of the line between Chicago and Boston.

And that’s it. There were TWO years when Tom wasn’t among the 10 best pitchers in his league at something related to his craft and EIGHTEEN when he was. Usually he appears among the leaders multiple times for a given season and often he leads all of his alleged peers. Most of that leadership was accomplished as a Met. Some of it came as a Red. A bit of it was saved for the White Sox. All of it, regardless of uniform, speaks to an immortal.

Says “Happy Birthday” to him, too.

11 comments to Terrific Birthday Greetings

  • Probably the most amazin’ thing about Seaver is that he surpassed 230 innings pitched in each season from 1983 to 1985 – his ages 38 to 40 seasons. To put that in perspective, no American League pitcher reached 230 innings in 2013 and only two National Leaguers reached that number.

    That’s what I call truly Terrific!

  • Argman

    And happy birthday to my son as well – which proves just how big a Mets fan I am!
    Whenever I think of Seaver, I get these conflicting emotions. So glad that he pitched for us, and that he was so great, etc. And so angry that those idiots traded him when he could have pitched for us his entire career.

  • March'62

    Tom was terrific but I STILL think that Dan Norman is going to turn into that power hitting corner outfielder we really need. Just a little patience y’all.

  • Joe D.

    Hi Greg,

    I still remember when Tom pitched the second game of the 1967 season against Pittsburgh which ended with a no-decision (things to come? LOL).

    At the time, I was wondering why Jack Fischer or Bob Shaw was not starting the second game after being passed up for Don Cardwell for the season opener. Little did I know. Little did any of us know.

  • JerseyJack

    Yikes! I feel old … seems like only yesterday that I was thrilling to that Championship season & Tom Terrific !

  • TJHinNYC

    Re Tom Terrific: Back in July 1969 (one week in as a Shea vendor for me and a few days shy of Tom’s near-perfect game), we vendors were killing time before the gates opened by playing punch ball under the right field stands. We were all playing close attention to the game when one of the Mets players walked unobtrusively along the edge of the wall next to the game. He had just parked his car and was heading to the clubhouse by that route (which happened on a occasion).

    Anyway, I apparently was the only one who noticed him. Just when he seemed to be home free and not interrupted, I yelled out at the top of my lungs, “Hey, George, how ya doin’?!” He turned around laughed loudly and said, “Very well, thank you!”

    All of the vendors joined in the laugh. And then, the game continued.

  • Ed Rising

    For me one of Seaver’s best moments came after his career was over. The night in early 1992 when Howie Rosetold us that Seaver had been elected to the Hall of Fame. Howie’s opening monologue on WFAN that night was so emotional as he said he could be objective of about anything except for Tom Seaver. It was one more indication of how much emotion we Mets fans have been wrapped up in thanks to him. I shook his hand when he was signing autographs at Roosevelt Field. I was overcome with tears as I tried to convey how important he was to the Mets and to me. He was patient taking photos and didn’ push me along the line heha.

    I’m glad that Tom has rebounded from some health issues and wish him a most happy birthday. I wish I could find GTS wine so I could toast him. Happy birthday Tom!