This Date in Mets History: May 10 — Rickey's ready to play, but the 'pen is appaLOLlingly bad

Ezra Shaw / Getty Images

Rickey Henderson, ever an elite player, reached another level on this date in 2000 by achieving something only 20 major leaguers had previously done.

The Mets put forth a rather dispiriting effort on May 10, 2000, losing 13-9 to the lowly Pirates. Rick Reed wasn't himself, allowing six runs in five innings, but the bullpen might as well have taken the day off. Four relievers combined to give up five runs in the bottom of the seventh, while John Franco put the game out of reach by permitting another two in the ninth.

One Met got credit just for showing up, however. By taking his scheduled turn at the plate in the sixth inning, Rickey became the 21st major league player to reach the 10,000 career at-bat plateau. Unsurprisingly, the Hall of Famer and owner of a lifetime .401 OBP found a way to get on base, stroking a solid single into right-center field.

Birthdays

  • Craig Brazell is 33. Craig's lone major league homer came at an opportune time. His solo shot in the bottom of the eleventh inning helped the Mets top the Chicago Cubs on September 25, 2004. That proved to be the height of the Brazell's career and the nadir of the Cubs' season. They'd lose seven of the next eight games, as well as the lead in the NL Wild Card standings.
  • Jim Hickman turns 75. Gentleman Jim reigned as the Mets' all-time home run champ from 1965 until Ron Swoboda connected for his 61st career round-tripper in May 1970. By then, Hickman was a Cub and a burgeoning All-Star. He'd win that season's Midsummer Classic at Riverfront Stadium with a 12th inning walk-off single that plated hometown rep Pete Rose in violent fashion.
  • Pete Schourek, another former Mets who found his form after leaving Flushing, is 44. The left-hander put it all together for the Reds in 1995, posting an 18-7 record with an 3.22 ERA. That was good enough to place second in the Cy Young voting, though Schourek was a distant runner-up to winner Greg Maddux and his insane 9.7 rWAR season.

Game of Note
The Mets earned bragging rights over their crosstown rivals on this date in 1973, as they beat the Yankees in the Mayor's Trophy Game, a midseason exhibition match that the two teams played for charity every year between 1963 and 1979. The city's NLers leapt out to an early lead, exploding for five runs in the second and three more in the fifth. Mets' starter George Stone, meanwhile, held the Bronx Bombers scoreless through eight-plus, though Graig Nettles ruined the shutout by hitting a too little, too late grand slam. Final score: Mets 8, Yankees 4.

Amazin'-ly Tenuous Connection
Four years ago today, President Barack Obama nominated New York's own Elena Kagan to take over the seat of retiring Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens. When introducing his pick to the press, the president made sure to mention that Kagan was a "die-hard Mets fan". Presumably, Obama chose the former U.S. Solicitor General to balance out the ideological leanings of his previous Supreme Court nominee, Bronx native and Yankees fan Justice Sonia Sotomayor. When asked for comment, Jay Horwitz said the Mets were "very proud" of the president's choice and that the team would arrange for Kagan to throw out the first pitch. It hasn't happened yet, though should Horwitz keep his word, Kagan would be the first justice to take the mound for the Mets since Samuel Alito lobbed a ceremonial pitch on Father's Day 2006.

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