I had the pleasure of welcoming former New York Met and the recently retired Frank Catalanotto to my show Mets Talk Live! Wright or Wrong?!? yesterday. For those of you who do not know, Frank is a class act, and it was a real pleasure and a treat to converse with the Smithtown, NY native.
Here are just a few of the topics I discussed in the interview with Frank:
– His playing days with the Mets
– His inspirational figure growing up
Here are some highlights:
JS: To lead things off, given that your from Smithtown, New York just about an hour away from Queens, what was it like last year to come back home and play for the Mets in 2010?
FC: It was awesome, it was a dream come true. I always wanted to play for a New York team and to be able to live at home, sleep in my own bed, be with my family, and have my friends and family come to the ballpark and watch me play was just awesome. I wish is would have lasted a little bit longer, but I’m still happy I was able to have that opportunity to play for the Mets.
JS: Who was your first inspiration, or I guess you could say role model that first exposed you to baseball and really got you into the game?
FC: It was my dad, definitely my dad. From a young age when I was 2, 3, 4 years old he would take me out back and pitch to me and he’d roll me ground balls. He would also take me to Yankee Stadium all the time, about five times a year, we’d watch all the games on television, he really had a passion for the game and that’s where my passion grew from.
JS: I couldn’t help but notice your foundation and the Vascular Birthmarks Foundation on your website at fcatalanotto.org. I think it’s great to see everything you’re doing to raise awareness, but for our listeners could you explain the foundation a little more in-depth and how they could potentially help?
FC: Yes, certainly. My daughter was born with a Vascular Birthmark on her nose, she’s 12-years-old now, but when she was born there was this big red spot on her nose and it continued to grow bigger and bigger. We got in touch with this lady named Linda Shannon and she was the head of the Vascular Birthmarks Foundation and she told us that there were treatments that could be done to make these birthmarks go away. So we met with a couple of doctors and my daughter had a couple of laser surgeries to remove the birthmarks and today you can’t even notice it.
The Vascular Birthmark Foundation helped us out so much that my wife and I are co-chairpersons for the foundation and they’re just a real good foundation, we try to promote awareness about them and help raise funds so you can go to www.fcatalanotto.com and go to my foundations website which is linked to the Vascular Birthmark Foundation. We’re having a golf outing October 3rd, here in Long Island and if anyone wants to see any information on it they can go to my website and there is a link to that as well.
To hear this and what else Frank had to say on yesterday’s installment of Mets Talk Live! Wright or Wrong?!? just click on the link and you can skip up to when Frank calls in, which is about 19 minutes into the show.