The Mets got some good news today as the winners of this season’s Players Choice Comeback Players of the Year were announced. Fernando Tatis was the overwhelming choice in the National League. The following is from the official announcement…
Perseverance and dedication took center stage today as Major League baseball players named Cleveland Indians pitcher Cliff Lee and New York Mets outfielder Fernando Tatis this season’s top comeback players.
After not playing professionally in 2004 and 2005, Tatis was motivated to attempt a big league comeback by his desire to earn enough money to build a church in his hometown of San Pedro de Macoris, D.R. The road back was a bumpy one as he played in just 28 games with Baltimore in 2006, and found himself in Triple-A New Orleans for all of 2007. Not to be deterred, he excelled in New Orleans, and finished the season with 21 homers, 137 hits and 90 runs scored in 131 games. His 2007 performance was good enough to earn him a trip to spring training with the New York Mets, but he fell just short of making the big league roster out of camp, winding up back in the Big Easy. However, after just 37 games in New Orleans, he was summoned to the Big Apple in May, and helped the Mets contend for the NL East title by hitting .297, with 11 homers, 47 RBI and 33 runs scored in 92 games.
Check out this great video that shows highlights of Fernando Tatis and his reaction to winning the award.
Needless to say, I am absolutely thrilled for Fernando and hopefully this leads to a new contract for 2009. Tatis may have easily been the best clutch hitter on the Mets last season, and was the driving force during the Mets comeback in the second half of the season. He hit just 11 homeruns, but every single one of them seemed to put the Mets in front or in a position to comeback and win the game.
I hope we get to see him again next season, patrolling leftfield in the new digs.
Congratulations to Fernando Tatis.