The Week That Was: Mets Fowl Play

     The New York Mets added some ugly aesthetics to Citi Field  during the All-Star Game break as letters with bizarre misspellings of “chicken” were vertically placed along both the left and right field foul poles. The end result is that action made a number of previously obstructed seats even more so for paying customers in those areas. 

     It turns out that the scrambled messages on the foul poles were for the controversial Chick-fil-A restaurant chain. As many Mets fans have often asked themselves about their favorite team’s management, “What were they thinking?”

     It’s no secret that Chick-fil-A has not been an ally to the LGBTQ community and in fact its corporate charitable foundation has made contributions to anti-gay lobbying groups according to Vox Media. Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy, son of the chain’s ultra-conservative founder S. Truett Cathy, has repeatedly stated that marriage should only be between a man and a woman.

    Now this is the USA and people are entitled to their beliefs even if we don’t share them. I have no problem with people who enjoy dining at Chick-Fil-A and I admit that I’ve had their cuisine on a handful of occasions.

     On the other hand I am not running a business where I have to worry about offending potential customers as the Mets are. Their timing on desecrating the Citi Field foul poles for Chick-fil-A couldn’t have been worse considering that the team has slated Saturday, August 10th, to be their annual Pride Night in which the LGBTQ community will be saluted before and during their game with the Washington Nationals.

     It should also be noted that Chick-Fil-A does not have a concession stand at Citi Field. There are several concessionaires that sell chicken at Citi Field such as Fuku and they pay the Mets for that privilege. I wonder how happy they are about Chick-fil-A’s sudden ad presence.

     I ran into former Mets third baseman David Wright Friday night at Citi Field. Spinal stenosis forced him to halt his playing career prematurely and I asked him if it is causing him discomfort now that he’s a civilian. Wright told me that he has a custom-designed bed in which both his head and toes are elevated so that it resembles a skateboard ramp.

    Wright still suffers from pain which can’t be predicted from one day to the next. I asked him about how he deals with it now as opposed to when he was an active player. “Before I would go for extensive physical therapy no matter what. Now if it flares up I just don’t play golf on that day,” he replied.

     Former Mets centerfielder Jay Payton made his first visit to Citi Field on Friday night. Although he’s 47 he still looks the way he did as a Met. He chuckled when I said that given Juan Lagares’s awful season the Mets should sign him.

   The Mets have acquired starting pitcher Marcus Stroman from the Toronto Blue Jays from minor league pitching prospects Anthony Kay and Simeon Woods Richardson. Coincidentally the two principals in the trade, Stroman and Kay both grew up and played high school baseball in Suffolk County.

   New York Yankees radio voice for the last 30 years, John Sterling, is the subject of an interview with Bryant Gumbel on the new episode of HBO’s “Real Sports” that debuts this Tuesday.

    Mark Sanchez, who was the last New York Jets quarterback to lead them to a playoff appearance, has retired from the NFL in order to accept a job as a college football analyst for ESPN.

    Deepest condolences to popular New York Post sports columnist Mike Vaccaro on the passing of his mom, Ann.

    Cable’s Discovery Channel is continuing their longstanding midsummer programming tradition with Shark Week that runs through Sunday, August 4.

    There has been an expression kicking around for roughly the past 25 years that states that “Politics is Hollywood for ugly people.” although it has been disputed as to who originally came up with the phrase. I can’t comment on the politicians themselves but MSNBC pundits as Jacqueline Alemany, Natasha Bertrand, and Alexi McCammond certainly do bring a touch of Hollywood glamor to the coverage of politics.

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