A guy named AJ Mass wore the Mr. Met costume at Shea Stadium from 1994-97. He just wrote a memoir called “Yes, It’s Hot in Here — Adventures in the Weird, Wooly World of Sports Mascots.” In it, he reveals that in 1997, President Clinton visited Shea. Mass wanted to meet him, but the secret service was concerned about security because, let’s face it, you can put anything in a giant baseball head.
And they warned him:
“We have snipers all around the stadium, just in case something were to happen,” the agent warned. “Like I said, do whatever it is you normally do. But approach the President, and we go for the kill shot. Are we clear?”
Nah, thats not extreme. Not extreme at all.
As the Daily News story recounting this shows, however, Mr. Met did finally get his chance to get close to Bill, but it was (a) several years after he left office; and (b) a different dude wearing the Mr. Met getup. So sad.
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Rangers have signed outfielder Carlos Gomez to a one-year deal. Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that Gomez will earn $11.5 million next season.
Gomez, 31, struggled with the Astros to a .594 OPS before the club released him in mid-August. The Rangers signed him shortly thereafter and were immediately rewarded. Gomez hit .284/.362/.543 with eight home runs and 24 RBI in 130 plate appearances through the end of the regular season.
As presently constructed, Gomez would likely take over in center field with Nomar Mazara handling left and Shin-Soo Choo in right.
Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that the Diamondbacks are close to signing free agent reliever Fernando Rodney.
Rodney, 39, has been inconsistent over the past two seasons. This past season, he was lights-out with the Padres, posting a 0.31 ERA in 28 appearances. After the Marlins acquired him at the end of June, he struggled to a 5.89 ERA in 39 appearances.
Brad Ziegler, who closed for the Diamondbacks in the first half last season, went to the Red Sox in a midseason trade and is now a free agent. The Diamondbacks had six other relievers register a save, but only Daniel Hudson and Jake Barrett recorded more than one. Adding Rodney will give the club some stability in the ninth inning.