Your first Shea memory

We are down to 12 games for Shea; a dozen opportunities to create a memory, and for some, a first memory.

Many of you have said your last good-bye to the park. Some will do so in the coming weeks.

For now, I’d like for you to tell us about your first memory of Shea. Not the most dramatic. Not the most spectacular, but your first. Was it with your dad? Maybe the Mets lost that day, who cares? Was it just going to see the park you saw on TV?

Get mushy if you want.

8 thoughts on “Your first Shea memory

  1. I can’t remember my first Shea memory but I do remember my Dad taking me to a game agains the Reds during which Pete Rose was attempting to tie or break the NL record of 37 game hitting streak. I remember that I had been to other games at Shea and was surprised at how many people were there. They didn’t usually draw too many that day. And I remember that George Foster hit a really long foul ball down the left field line. Or maybe it was a HR. I was just a kid at the time.

  2. also hard to remember when exactly my first shea memory occurred. it was sometime in the mid 80s (85?) and part of a group outing for my club swim team.

    doc pitched and the mets won. i think somewhere in my parent’s basement there’s a program from the game.

    my best shea memory, however, is much easier to recall. that took place 10/9/99, aka the todd pratt walk off hr game vs. the dbacks to win the nlds.

    i remember the crack of the bat and the buzz of the crowd as everyone’s head turned to follow the flight of the ball.

    there was a moment of silence, as if every single person in the stadium was collectively holding their breath while finley jumped up at the wall in centerfield.

    anxiously we waited to see if the ball would clear the fence or find the inside of his leather.

    finally, after what felt like an eternity, finley landed, hung his head, and began slowly walking back towards the field.

    suddenly, the moment of realization gave way to the sound of 55,000 people erupting in unison.

    the stadium shook, i jumped up onto my seat, and as the wave of euphoria pulsed through me, for a brief moment i felt like i had been touched by god.

  3. My first game I went with my dad and one of my brothers in ’87. End of Sept. vs. the Pirates. My hero Doc got creamed. I think it was the shortest outing of his career to that point. Maz hit a homerun. And they were selling Milky Way bars in the stands and I thought the guy was yealling, “Mookie Way bars!”

  4. I do not remember my first visit to Shea, I know my father took me a few times, but my memory doesn’t go back that far.
    I do remember the first time I took the journey by myself. I had upper deck seats on the first base side. Tom Seaver was pitching against the Houston Astros. Seaver only gave up one run, a home run by Houston OF Cedeno. Besides that hit Seaver was masterful that day. That was the day I truly learned to enjoy a baseball game, even when there wasn’t a lot of offense. Watching the players and the managers make adjustments. Watching just shut down the opposing batters was amazing. Cleon Jones will always be my favorite Met, but Seaver is a close 2nd.

  5. My first time at Shea was in April 64. I think it was the 2nd Met game played there. They played the Pirates and, of course they lost. The few things I remember of that. My friend and I took the 7 train for the first time! Elroy Face, who was probably the best reliever of the early sixties finished the game. Unlike today’s closers he came in with men on base!!! And Willie Stargell, whom everybody thinks of as a first baseman played left because Donn Clendennon was at first. I know the Mets didn’t homer.

  6. My first memory was with my dad. I guess I was about four or five. I don’t remember very much of any of it really. What I do remember is seeing the field for the first time. You know how the entrance ramps to the upper decks are tilted upwards so you can’t see the field until you get to the top? That is what I remember. Walking to the top of the ramp while holding my fathers hand and then suddenly there is was. I think I thought it was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen to that point in my life. And I still get just a bit of that same feeling every time I first see the field when I go to a game.

  7. when i was 9, me and my parents flew to new york and we saw the mets beat the giants 2-0, with leiter on the mound. my favorite memory however was last year when we flew back up and saw the mets beat the braves. it was 3-1 braves when castillo of all people hit a 2-run single, and later alou hit the go-ahead solo homerun. wagner loaded the bases in the ninth before mark texiera popped out and then andruw jones grounded into a double play to end the game. that was a good one

  8. Somehow, I was lucky enough at the age of 6 to have my first live baseball game be at Shea on the day the Mets clinched their first pennant in 1969. The entire day is somewhat of a blur to me. My family had moved to central NJ from Atlanta the prior year and everyone else in the neighborhood seemed to be from Brooklyn or Queens. My next door neighbor came home early from work that afternoon while I was shooting hoops in his driveway with his son, who was about 4 years older than me. Talk about being in the right place at the right time. Someone had just given him tickets to that night’s game and he drove home to get his son for the game. He knew I was a big sports fan (and somehow a Mets fan already) so when he told his son he had tickets, he saw my amazement, walked over to my house and asked my mother if it would be alright if I joined them, and then came back and told me I had about 10 minutes to get ready to go to my first baseball game, let alone first time into the city, and, more importantly, to see the game the Mets could clinch their first pennant. I was pretty much in a daze from that point on. This was pretty much unbelievable for me. My father is not into sports so I had been pretty much on my own at that point and was often in trouble for getting caught listening to games on my transistor radio under my pillow after I was supposed to be asleep.

    In all honesty I remember less about the details of the game then I should, but there are a couple of things that stick out. We had killer seats (3rd of 4th row just past the 3rd base dugout), I just missed catching a fall ball (some man out wrestled me on the catch), Gary Gentry pitched (I was disapointed not to get to see Seaver or Koosman), and, most importantly, when the final outs were made (a ground ball double play if I remember correctly), I was scared for my life as the entire stands charged the field and just started trampling us. My neighbor’s father actually shoved me under the seat so that I couldn’t get stepped on. I remember getting beer all over me and then being able to get up within a minute or two as some semblance of order was restored and the intense celebration.

    What a whirlwind, fantastic day. Still doesn’t seem real.