I’d just like to say a few words about how gracious Mike Piazza was during the weekend of the 10th Anniversary of September 11th, and also at the game at CitiField.
Never has a catcher been such a gentlemen, both at the plate and behind it, much like Johnny Bench. Mike was given a bit of a hard time when he originally arrived on the Mets, but once we got to know him, we never wanted to let him go. Pitchers loved him and the rest of the team did, too. He was a private man, and a religious man, and it made him a bit different. In fact, when Roger Clemens threw a broken bat at him during the playoff game, the crowd was stunned.
Mike is now happily married with two little girls and when he was around a couple of weekends ago, someone asked him if he missed the game. He said yes, but he’d like to see his daughters grow up a bit before even thinking about returning to it in some capacity.
Catchers are special people, they work with the pitcher, but only they see the whole game clearly from behind the plate. Every pitcher has a favorite catcher, and some will only work with that player. Mike was liked by all his pitchers, and they shared him equally.
It was the only way he would have wanted it.