Open Letter to the @Mets: Retire 17 for Keith Hernandez

Dear Mets,

Hopefully you had the opportunity to watch the documentary about the 1986 Mets.

You know what it reminded us all, even though we knew it…..


I know it’s the 21st Century and we’re supposed to get all gaga when someone hits 53 HRs (ooooh home runs) but KEITH HERNANDEZ WAS REALLY GOOD

Where do we start?

He could hit.

He could field the position like nobody ever.  Not before, not then, not since.

He was so good he made Whitey Herzog lean on umpires to start enforcing rules – specifically that both feet need to in-bounds as the pitch is thrown.

Then there is the field general stuff.  Those of us who lived through it know he CHANGED THE CULTURE, a phrase you throw out every year when you introduce the new manager, new general manager, new owner.  You’ve changed the culture 5 times since Mikey Callaway changed the culture.  All talk, all losers.  Keith actually changed the culture.

Watch the documentary – you will hear Keith’s teammates tell you the stories.  He was the leader.

And we all know eventually you will retire 17.

So let me ask you – why don’t you just do it.

Keith is around.  Keith is healthy.  Let’s have a day for Keith and let everyone know how much we love him and how much he meant to us.

You will do it eventually, but learn from your Seaver mistake.  You waited and waited and waited and Seaver will never see his statue.  He couldn’t even make it to the announcement.  Shame on you.

So rather than waiting until Keith passes away at the ripe old age of 137, let’s just do it.  There is no reason to wait.

Any Mets fan cringes when we see someone else wearing 17.  It’s not right.  It’s Keith’s number.  We all know it.  Let’s just codify it.

The more I think about this, it’s a sin this hasn’t happened already.  We don’t have a time machine, but we do have today.  This could be a five second decision for Steve Cohen.  Just make the call Steve.  Howie and the Alumni committee are not going to fight you on this.


This brings up a parallel discussion about 8 and Gary Carter.  8 seems retirement worthy as well, and has been unofficially retired in that 24 kind of way.  The difference is, unfortunately, and this is the point of the above, that Gary Carter can’t be at Gary Carter Day.

So I propose to you – announce 17, 8 and 5 will all be retired.  Have Keith Day next summer, Wright Day the summer after and Carter Day in 2024.

Stop jerking around.  You’re going to do it.  Do it today.