The Fred Wilpon Legacy
Legacy. Each one of us will leave one behind when we leave this world, whether it be good or bad. For some it may be philanthropy or achievement in sports, politics or journalism. For a great many people their most important legacy will be their children.
When I sat down to research the subject of this blog, Fred Wilpon, I wanted to look beyond the man that many refer to as “Freddy Coupon”. How can his legacy be measured? Is it defined simply by the Mets’ on field success?
If that were the case, his legacy is well documented in the two pennants and one World Series championship the Mets have captured since he became part owner of the team in 1980. I think a man’s legacy is deeper than that. What kind of man was he behind the scenes? What drove him to be who he was in his heart of hearts?
Frankly, I’m a little surprised with how little personal information I could find about him other than the usual. Many owners are more visible and vocal, ala George Steinbrenner, and are not happy unless they are the center of attention. Fred Wilpon seems to be the anti- Steinbrenner.
These are your basic Fred Wilpon facts: Born in 1936. Was a teammate of Hall of Famer Sandy Koufax during their days at Lafayette High School in Brooklyn. Earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Michigan in 1958. Chairman of Sterling Equities etc…
Since he purchased the remaining 50% of the Mets from Nelson Doubleday in 2002 there hasn’t been great success for the franchise. Many of us will probably remember Fred Wilpon as one of the guys who was swindled by Bernie Madoff and his Ponzi scheme.
I suppose we could say that as of now Fred Wilpon was a man who always tried to mold the Mets into a contender year after year. I know it’s easy for us to sit at our computers and critique, but during the seasons things didn’t turn out so well we might never know if he took it like a knife to the chest as many of us fans do. I think if he didn’t we would never have seen the likes of Pedro Martinez, Carlos Beltran or Johan Santana in orange and blue. I certainly couldn’t imagine spending millions of dollars on something I didn’t care deeply about.
He could have just been another owner content with mediocrity and gladly bathed in the ocean of revenue the Mets generate. For me, to have an owner who is so emotionally invested that the radio call of Bobby Thomson’s “Shot Heard ‘Round The World” to beat the Dodgers in 1951 startled him so much that he sliced off a little piece of his pinkie finger while he was making a sandwich, is encouraging.
I believe that Fred Wilpon’s legacy isn’t cemented just yet and he will hoist yet another Commissioners’ Trophy in the near future.
About the Author: Adam Baker
- jason bay: on ESPN New York: Justin Turner Cut For Not Hustling: Someone else stated Minaya "had his eye...
- taskmaster4450: on ESPN New York: Justin Turner Cut For Not Hustling: Image is everything? How is this for an...
- Mike Lloyd: on ESPN New York: Justin Turner Cut For Not Hustling: Probably trashed the guy so they could...
- DontTradeMurph: on Thoughts On The Improbable Gardner For Murphy Swap: I can't believe they are even considering...
- taskmaster4450: on ESPN New York: Justin Turner Cut For Not Hustling: Exactly. These "sources" unnamed seem to...
Write For Metsmerized Online
Mets Merized Online is reloading and looking for new writers to help cover the Hot Stove Season. We're also looking for passionate writers who would like to contribute new and original features.
Contact us now at GetMetsmerized@aol.com for more info and join the #1 Mets Fansite on the web!
Check Out These Great MLB Links!
Mets Autograph Signings
Mets Fan Apparel
Mets Autographed Baseballs
Baseball Card Supplies
For the best seats and lowest MLB ticket prices, go to PurchaseSeats.com. Get your Mets Tickets now and follow them on the road with Yankees Tickets, Phillies Tickets, Nationals Tickets and Braves Tickets!