— Days Without Shea —

Hodges_smallThe Mets will be honoring Gil Hodges before Friday night’s Mets/Astros game at Shea Stadium.

Of course, Hodges led the mets to their first World Series title in 1969. He was also an original Met player in 1962 and hit the first home run in team history. Hodges died 35 years ago this year, which Loge13 memorialized back in April.

Here are the details on Friday’s tribute, from the press release:

FLUSHING -- The New York Mets today announced that National Baseball Hall of Famers Tom Seaver and Yogi Berra, along with Mets legends Ed Charles, Bud Harrelson, Ed Kranepool, and Ron Swoboda will join Joan Hodges and her family to celebrate Gil Hodges' induction into the United States Marine Corps Sports Hall of Fame this Friday night, Sept. 7 at Shea Stadium.

The on-field ceremony honoring Hodges will take place at 6:30 p.m. before the Mets host the Houston Astros. Hodges' Dodgers teammates Ralph Branca and Joe Pignatano also will attend the ceremony. A 30-piece Marine Corps Band will be present to perform the Marine Corps Hymn in Gil's honor.

The United States Marine Corps on Aug. 17 inducted Hodges into its Sports Hall of Fame for his excellence on and off the athletic playing field. Hodges was inducted along with Angelo Bertelli, former Notre Dame Quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner; Leo Nomellini, member of the College and Football Pro Hall of Fame; and Bobby Wanzer, former NBA basketball great. Former inductees include Ted Williams, Ken Norton, Lee Trevino and Seaver, who was inducted in 2003.

As Manager of the 1969 World Champion Mets, Hodges led the team to a 100-62 record, the best in the National League that year. Under his direction, New York swept past the Atlanta Braves in the National League Championship Series and defeated the heavily favored Baltimore Orioles four games to one in the World Series. In Hodges' four seasons as Manager of the Mets, he led the team to a record of 339-309.

Hodges' managerial career followed a distinguished playing career that spanned 18 seasons, beginning with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1943 and concluding two seasons with the Mets in 1962-1963. Hodges was elected to eight All-Star teams and won three Gold Gloves as the Dodgers' slugging first baseman.

Hodges batted .273 with 370 home runs (including the first in Mets team history in 1962), and 1,274 runs batted in 2,071 career games. He recorded 1,921 hits, 295 doubles, 48 triples, and scored 1,105 runs. His 14 career grand slams set a National League record, since eclipsed by Willie McCovey (18) and Hank Aaron (16).

For more information log on to Mets.com, LosMets.com or call 718-507-TIXX.

[September 6, 2007 6:59 PM]  |  link  |  reply
BobR said

Any fan younger than 40 won't remember Gil Hodges. But he was one of the pivotal figures in their history. Hodges came in with a no-nonsense attitude and made the Mets get rid of their "lovable loser" label. They made immediate improvement in his first season, and then won it all the second. A remarkable achievement considering they had never had a winning record up to that time. He was a master of platooning players. I'm glad Gil is getting this recognition.

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