“It was particularly unpopular as a promotion. We didn’t see an increase in ticket sales or interest from sponsors or even from people who already had tickets. It died of its own unpopularity in the early ’90s."Nonsense. The last time the Mets did an Old-Timers' Day was in 1994. While the attendance was only 24,885, that was still better than the team's 20,380 average attendance at Shea that season, and represents an approximately 25% increase in ticket sales.
While it wasn't a a sellout, the Mets Police blog reminds us of how bad the team the Mets were putting on the field back then (the year before, they only won 59 games.) To not consider that the crummy team might have had something to do with the Old Timers' Day attendance back then is ludicrous. And to refuse to do another such event because of something that happened 1a generation ago is crazy.
No, there are two real reasons the Mets won't put on an Old Timers' Day again. One is that this is a franchise which is embarrassed to showcase its own history. Dodgers' history? Yes. Mets' history? Fugeddaboutit.
The second is that the Mets are also an extraordinarily cheap franchise. As Howard, the Mets VP, also told reporters:
"It wasn't popular, it wasn't effective, fans weren't responding and it wasn't selling very many tickets," Howard says. "The fans spoke volumes. It's a very expensive promotion and it wasn't producing the sales and marketing results we wanted for that investment."This is just silly. I seem to remember there being a sellout crowd for the last game at Shea Stadium, and big attendance for Ralph Kiner Day and the 1986 tribute game, so to suggest that fans don't care about such stuff is ludicrous.
The real story is that unlike the Yankees, the Mets are too stingy to fly in their dozens of their old players, and put them up in hotels for the weekend. But in addition to being so cheap, the Mets try to palm it off as the fans' lack of interest. Unconscionable.
Every Met fan I know, including Squawker Jon, is embarrassed by their team's refusal to honor their own franchise's history.
While the Bombers aren't perfect - I'm still unhappy with much of the new Stadium - the team ownership does a terrific job with Old Timers' Day each year. Players from Aaron Small to Yogi Berra all get their moment in the sun.
Meanwhile, the only chance Met fans will be able to get to see players like Doc Gooden or David Cone or Lee Mazzilli play in Old Timers' Day game, is if they headed to the Bronx today. Yet another reason why the Yankees rule, and the Mets drool.
You know what would be icing on the cake, though? If the Bombers got Gooden to sign some place that all the fans could see today. Contrary to previous promises, the Mets still haven't done anything with Doc's signature, other than hide it from the fans!
What do you think? Leave us a comment!