Vincent Safuto’s Weblog

Notes and observations

Goodbye, Gary Carter

Whitney Houston dies. Big deal.

Gary Carter dies. Now, that’s a big deal.

I read the news after my afternoon nap. “The Kid” is gone. It’s a tragedy.

He would have been a great major league manager. Maybe someday, he might have been an “old perfesser” like Casey Stengel, guiding some Mets team of the future to greatness, but his future was stolen from him. Gary Carter deserved better. Lots better.

Here’s his New York Times obit.

Those of us who loved the Mets back then remember his arrival in a Mets uniform. On Opening Day, April 9, 1985, Shea Stadium, Flushing, N.Y., he hit a pitch from Neil Allen into the left-field bullpen. See that great and famous home run here.

It barely made it over the wall, and the way people cheered you would have thought it landed in the parking lot, but it still counted, and the Mets won the game.

They won a lot of games in 1985, and in 1986, and Gary Carter was in the thick of it.

More important than being a great player, he was a great man. He shared his knowledge and skills, as best he could. Had cancer not taken him, he could have done much more.

But he did plenty. It’s a small comfort to his loving family, who are bereft right now, but they need to know this: Many, many, many people are mourning Mr. Carter tonight, and sending you their best wishes and hopes that our love comforts you in the days to come. The tributes will pour in from all over, for the man you let us have for a time, and for what he accomplished.

Thank you, Carter family.

And thank you, Gary.

You will be missed, and your great moments always treasured.

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February 17, 2012 - Posted by | Living in the modern age, The business of sports | , , , ,

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