A Night With Mookie Wilson Part 2: The Interview
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Thursday, May 9th, 2013
By Jordan Hennessey (Blue Jays Correspondent) Follow @hennej
One night with Mookie Wilson Part 2: The Interview
“Personality outweighed talent, you are most successful on the field when you have a group of men who are willing to make sacrifices for the betterment of the team. He thought the 1988 team might have been better, but the 1986 team “got the most out of each other” – Mookie Wilson.
To Read About A Night with Mookie Wilson Part 1 – click here
Click past the READ THE REST OF THE ENTRY ICON TO KEEP READING + Listen to the Audio Interview:
Mookie Wilson Interview From April.12/2013 – in Toronto:
It was an honor to be able to get 30 minutes with Mookie before the gala began to find out what he had been doing these days. He spoke about how much he enjoys working with the kids in the system and being able to watch them grow as a player and a person.
He also mentioned that it can be a thankless job at times working with Minor Leaguers because so many of them don’t pan out. It’s not so much what you are doing or not doing but it becomes the player sometimes.
A lot of these kids have ideas of the type of player they want to be, but it’s not always the best use of their talents or abilities, those are hard conversations to have with a 19 year old who has his sights set on being a power hitter on the big club.
That is insight only achieved by someone fortunate enough to be in the game as long as Mookie Wilson. Follow @mookiewilsonny1 He is looking forward to getting back on the road in April and visiting some of the farm clubs.
And on this night in Mid April that saw snow on the ground, I guess I was in no place to argue that assessment. He spoke on how cyclical baseball can be, and that the Blue Jays on paper are poised to be competitive.
Going back to his time with the Mets he said that over his 9 year career with the Mets they experienced a lot of things, the team struggled with an identity crisis in the early 80s and were always “little brother” to the Yankees across the River. As he approached the mid 80s - there was a bit of “changing of the guards” which saw the Mets become the hot ticket in town.
This coincided with the talent they acquired and developed and the personalities on the team, they become a very marketable and likeable team; likeable from a fans point of view that is, however, hated on the field, mostly because they were good, and they knew it. If they were playing in 2013, I believe some would call it “swagger”.
It’s amazing how in sport something like the Buckner bobble has the ability to bring two people together, and form a bond. Bill Buckner will always be connected to Mookie Wilson, and Mookie to Buckner.
Over the years they’ve done various autograph signings, public appearances, AND charity work – the ball was recently auctioned off for over $418,000. I am sure they both get tired of talking about it, but Mookie gave me the courtesy of going over his emotions during that 10 pitch at bat.. When you are in that zone you don’t really understand the significance of a single moment, or play.
It takes days or even weeks for the magnitude of one solitary play to truly settle in. As I watched him recount that in his head, I could tell that although he may grow tired telling it, it never truly gets old.
His parting advice to kids trying to make it to the next level: “Make sure that you understand the game, and understand who you are, once you find out who you are, then you can excel in that area.
You have to find out what your strength and weaknesses are”. He goes on further to say most young players don’t know what their strengths are, because they are played where they are needed, as opposed to where they can excel.
Over the course of the evening Mookie made many comparisons between an athlete, and a person. I have to think this is one of the many paradigms between baseball and life. I went there partly expecting to hear some war stories about baseball, but I left thinking about what my strengths in life might be.
Old players he keeps in contact with: Tim Teufel, Keith Hernandez, Doc Gooden, and Rafael Santana
Favorite Ball Park to play at: Wrigley Field
Favorite Ball park to watch a game at today: PNC Park, Pittsburgh, Citi Field, New York ,
Favorite Restaurant on the road: Ron of Japan – Chicago (Tell em’ Mookie sent ya )
Favorite Ball Park food: Old reliable, Hot Dog and Peanuts
To Read About A Night with Mookie Wilson Part 1 – click here
*** The views and opinions expressed in this report are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of mlbreports.com or their partners.***
A big Thank – You goes out to Blue Jays Contributor Jordan Hennessey for preparing today’s featured post. Jordan likes baseball, Blue Jays and Dr Oetkers Pizza. He thinks that there is no better place to be then at a ball stadium on a summer afternoon. He is also a member on the Jays Care Young Professionals Committee.
He lives in Toronto, but in his mind he is always on Vancouver Island where he’s from. You can follow him on Twitter and talk about baseball, Toronto, Vancouver or Canada in general. [twitter-follow screen_name='hennej' show_screen_name='yes']
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Posted on May 9, 2013, in Interviews with MLB Stars, The Rest: Everything Baseball and tagged 1986 new york mets, 1986 World Series, 1988 NLCS, 1989 ALCS, 1991 ALCS, bill buckner, chicago, citi field, colorado rockies, Doc Gooden, fernando valenzuela, gary carter, jim deshaies, jordan hennessey, keith hernandez, mets baseball hall of fame, minnesota twins, mookie wilson, new York, new york mets, new york yankees, oakland athletics, phil niekro, pnc park, preston wilson, rafael santana, ron of Japan in chicago, skydome, smith baseball facility, tim tuefel, toronto blue jays, world series 1992, world series 1993. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.