Piazza to be inducted into Mets Hall on Sept. 29
NEW YORK -- Mike Piazza may not have made Cooperstown on the first ballot, as many around baseball thought he might, but he did not have to wait long to enter the Mets Hall of Fame.
The team announced Sunday that it will induct Piazza into its Hall on Sept. 29, with a ceremony prior to that day's 1:10 p.m. game against the Brewers. Piazza will become the 27th member of the Mets Hall of Fame, and the sixth inducted in the past four years.
"I'm extremely honored to be in the Mets Hall of Fame with the company there," Piazza said. "I've said all along the Mets have always had some very colorful and outstanding ballplayers in their history. To be in that group is really great, a great honor, and I'm really looking forward to September."
Piazza hit 220 of his 427 career home runs with the Mets, ranking second in franchise history. A six-time All-Star during his eight years as a Met, he is first in team history with a .542 slugging percentage and third with 655 RBIs.
"Mike Piazza reinvigorated our franchise when we acquired him in May 1998," Mets chief operating officer Jeff Wilpon said in a statement. "Mike is one of the greatest players in our history, and we are thrilled to induct him into the Mets Hall of Fame."
Setting a team record with 124 RBIs while hitting 40 home runs in 1999, Piazza led the Mets to the World Series a year later by belting 38 homers and driving in 113. He is perhaps best known for the eighth-inning home run he hit against the Braves on Sept. 21, 2011, in the first game in New York City following the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
"That's just something, very few times in baseball do you have a moment like that," Piazza said. "That moment wasn't about just baseball, obviously. It was about something more. It will always be part of me, something I'll never forget. I think back now, I still get very emotional about it."
The five-member Mets Hall of Fame committee is comprised of front office staff and media members with long-standing connections to the club. The members are vice president of media relations Jay Horwitz, who is in his 34th season with the team; former Mets pitcher and original Met Al Jackson, a consultant in his sixth decade with the organization; Mets.com reporter Marty Noble, who has covered games since the 1970s; SNY play-by-play man Gary Cohen, who is in his 25th season of broadcasting Mets baseball; and WFAN broadcaster Howie Rose, who has covered the team since 1987.
Mets Hall of Fame members include Joan Payson (inducted 1981), Casey Stengel ('81), Gil Hodges ('82), George M. Weiss ('82), Johnny Murphy ('83), William A. Shea ('83), Ralph Kiner ('84), Bob Murphy ('84), Lindsey Nelson ('84), Bud Harrelson ('86), Rusty Staub ('86), Tom Seaver ('88), Jerry Koosman ('89), Ed Kranepool ('90), Cleon Jones ('91), Jerry Grote ('92), Tug McGraw ('93), Mookie Wilson ('96), Keith Hernandez ('97), Gary Carter (2001), Tommie Agee ('02), Frank Cashen ('10), Dwight Gooden ('10), Davey Johnson ('10), Darryl Strawberry ('10) and John Franco ('12).