— Days Without Shea —

Loge13 took a bit of a break for a few weeks while we dealt with some professional matters. But today we were able to honor a cherished tradition - attending the last home game of the Mets season.

Usually the finale is a melancholy milestone - the end of summer and the official crushing conclusion of another Mets season. Last year, we had a bit of an excitement when old what's his name bunted his way to the NL batting title.

And 2012's Citi sendoff promised even greater history - R.A. Dickey's quest for win #20. And he did not disappoint, pitching 7.1 solid innings, striking out 12 and allowing only 3 runs in the Mets' 6-5 victory.

Here is Dickey after the game:

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by Kingman on August 28 at 1:09PM
Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for WilletsPoint_061010.jpg
Part of the allure of constructing Citi Field was the assumed revitalization of the surrounding neighborhood, Willets Point.

This summer, after years of back door dealings and voracious opposition, development plans are moving forward. And not surprisingly, there are some surprises baked into the proposals.

Perhaps the biggest surprise relates to housing. Part of the deal was that a mixed-use neighborhI'm nood would be developed on the site of the Iron Triangle businesses. Mixed use means affordable housing, schools and the other stuff that sustains a community for people to live. Housing is still part of the plan. But it is the last part, coming by 2028. I'll be approaching 60 by then, so this may work out great for my retirement plans. But I'm pretty sure this isn't what most people had in mind.

The Times Ledger of Queens did a good job breaking down the five stage proposal that the city accepted in June from Manhattan real estate firm Related Cos. and the Wilpon's own Sterling Equities. It basically comes down to this:

STAGE 1 - Detox. The 23 acres of Willets Point needs to be razed and all the soil replaced. Expect completion date = 2015

STAGE 2 - First round of retail construction.  Low-scale retail and restaurant locations along 126th Street across from Citi Field, along with a 200-room hotel. This will certainly benefit the Mets bottom line.
Expected completion date = 2016

STAGE 3 - WILLETS WEST. This is another new wrinkle that is generating lots of opposition. Developers want to essentially build a mall between Citi Field and the Grand Central Parkway, which will host about 200 stores. A few problems here.
- The site is currently a parking lot. Where will fans park?
- More important, developers want to build this mall ON TOP OF THE SITE OF SHEA STADIUM!!! Of course, they claim they will take pains to commemorate the Mets' old home but c'mon. Show some respect.
- Even more important. This proposal is probably illegal. According to the Times Ledger:

"Because it is on park land, the development becomes a legal issue.

A law stipulates that anything built on the property is legal as long as it benefits the Mets, meaning no other development firm could have proposed to build on the land aside from Sterling. The partnership contends the law allows the movie theaters, restaurants and other entertainment venues they would like to build.

But opponents say the development is not only an egregious misuse of parkland but also illegal. The law would only permit something like a souvenir shop, for example."

Of course, the developers say Willets Point West and the other two stages have to happen before they can contemplate building housing and letting regular folk live near the mall.

STAGE 4 - New exit ramps off the Van Wyck.
Expected completion date = 2021

So as Loge13 understands it, the area around Citi Field will get 400 new stores and a hotel AND there will be less parking and no additional access ramps into the area from major highways.

STAGE 5 - construction of market-rate and affordable housing
Expected completion date - Between 2024 and 2028.

There are still many more hurdles to leap before these plans are ratified. We'll keep following the progress. It is also not clear what will come first - housing to Willets Point or a pennant to Citi Field.

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Filed under: Baseball | CitiField | Mets
by Kingman on August 24 at 11:54AM
The Mets unveiled a new arm Thursday. The rookie received a hero's welcome upon taking the field for the first pitch, then enjoyed some quality time with David Wright. The Mets third baseman begged our newest addition to bat behind him so he could finally have some protection in the lineup.

Sadly, Gabby Douglas was only there to throw out the first pitch and is too smart busy to join our bedraggled ballclub right now.

The good news: actual Met rookie Colin McHugh did throw a masterful game in his big league debut, striking out nine and allowing no runs in seven innings of work.

The bad news: We lost anyway, 1-0. The Mets are now in 4th place, 1/2 game ahead of the Marlins. And we just got swept by the Rockies, who were 25 games under .500 but feel much better now after feasting on blue & orange carcass. Here come the Astros for the weekend. I guess it is safe now to make alternate plans for October.

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Filed under: Baseball | CitiField | Mets
by Kingman on August 23 at 9:56AM
After a long hiatus, we got back to Citi Field this summer, just in time to watch the 2012 collapse in an intimate setting.

The Kingman clan needed two extra tickets for Wednesday night's game so we contacted our ticket rep. Not only did he give us two extra tickets, he gave them to us for free. AND he upgraded our seats to field level, section 126 to be exact. We had never sat in that part of Citi Field before so here is some video of the view. This is Matt Harvey striking out Jonathan Herrera in the 1st inning:

Life was so much easier then. Harvey was locked in - he would strike out 5 of the first 6 Rockies and finish with nine K's for the night. Sadly, he would leave the game with the score tied. Ramon Ramirez required only two pitches to surrender a home run and the lead to Wilin Rosario. The Mets ultimately lost the game 5-2 and for the 5th game in a row, the blue 7 orange failed to scored more than two runs.

Still, the few hundred folks who were there with us really enjoyed Matt Harvey's 6th major league start. Harvey also had two hits - his second multi-hit game, which is one less than Jason Bay. With Johan Santana now officially shut down for the season, things are looking rough. Meanwhile, we still have four more games in our plan. If we keep getting upgrades, we might even be pitching a few innings before the 2012 campaign is over.

[August 24, 2012 6:41 AM]  |  link  |  reply
Paul said

Wow, with your posts few and far between,I figured you guys gave up your plan. But who can blame you. Just another season filled with empty promises and the same poor results.

Also I think with ALL the empty seats, the Mets could have done a little better than outfield seats for a group of LONG TIME PLAN HOLDERS....

But that's just it. Management does care and hasn't for a LONG TIME! Do we forget how we were treated after the 2008 Season? How at first they wanted us to upgrade to "Season Tickets" and when that didn't work, offer bogus plans with seating ONLY in the Promenade. Forcing Saturday and Sunday Plan holders to buy 5 middle-of-the-week games they don't want, or like us, replacing our earned LOGE SEATS with Promenade Outfield. That was the last straw for me and have not been to 15 games since 2009.

Sure, at first, I missed it. But now, I'm glad I told them to stick it, When I do go, I get great Loge type seats between the bases from Stub Hub. And at least 35% off face value.

Will be going this Saturday for the last time in 2012. I hope you guys enjoy your last 4 games. As for me, no ticket plans for 2013, not until ownership gets their head out of their a-- and shows us fans "SOME RESPECT"!

[August 24, 2012 11:53 AM]  |  link  |  reply
Kingman said

Good to hear from ya, Paul. Yes Loge13 had an extended slowdown the past month, which coincided with the Mets extended slide from contention. Coincidence?

Indeed we do remember how we were treated after 2008. Hence Loge13's existence. Honestly, though, this has probably been the best year at Citi Field. We had very low expectations going into the season and this team has been fun to watch (until about mid-July). The front office has been very accommodating as well, with multiple offers of upgrades, free tickets and other goodies. It takes alot to make Kingman say good things about the Mets organization but they are finally taking planholders seriously, cuz we're all they got!

But you're certainly saving yourself plenty of aggravation and cash by going the StubHub route. Come September, you could probably buy a ticket on the bench.

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Filed under: Baseball | CitiField | Mets
by Kingman on July 11 at 8:49AM
Ah the All-Star break. A chance to deconstruct the season's first half, recalibrate and charge into the rest of the baseball campaign. A much deserved breather for all...

And then this happens. Dillon Gee will be heading to the 15 day DL after a blood clot was found in his arm. This is tough news for Met fans but most important, scary news for Gee and his family. These things can turn out to be nothing or they can be career-ending events.

Now the Mets will need to make some moves. Before the Gee news, our partners over at MLB Trade Rumors were saying that catching was high on the list for GM Sandy Alderson...specifically the Rockies catcher Ramon Hernandez. However, the team will not part with top prospects, especially pitching prospects Zach Wheeler or Matt Harvey. Now one of those guys may be getting the call to the big show. Personally I would rather see that than a trade for some risky veteran solution.

In other Loge13 moves, our next game in our plan is going to be July 24th, then the day game July 25. You will see us there and here more often.

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