Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Is This Heaven? Nah. It's Brooklyn.

I debated using a catchier title, like "Catch the Fun," "Catch the Action," "Catching Up With Dad," or "Catching Father's Day Fever" but eventually thought better of it.

The bottom line, if you haven't caught on yet (sorry...once you get started it's hard to stop) is that this Father's Day (June 21st), we're inviting dads and their kids to have a catch on the field at KeySpan Park, right before our 5pm game against the rival Staten Island Yankees.

Having a catch with your dad is one of the pivotal moments of childhood for most normal, human, American kids (not you, don't meet any of those criteria). Ray Kinsella was so messed up about not having a catch with his dad that he bulldozed his crops, built a baseball field in his backyard, and started talking to ghosts. And then millions of grown men watched a movie about it and bawled their eyes out like little babies. (Not me. I'm way too tough for that.)

(sniffle, sniffle...OK, OK, I admit gets me every time.)

So make sure you bring your husband, father, kids, step-father, father-in-law -- whoever -- to KeySpan Park on June 21st for a Father's Day catch. It's also Bucket Cap night, a Nathan's Four Pack Combo Night, and kids get to run the bases after the game. There's really no better or more fun way to spend the day (especially starting at just eight bucks a ticket).

And anyway, if you don't have a catch with the old man, you might wind up kidnapping Darth Vader and being forced to listen to his monologues, talking to dead people, or trying to build a ballfield on Avenue U with your bare hands or something.

It could happen. I'm just saying.

-- Dave

Monday, April 27, 2009

Evil Deliveries

Days like today, it's easy to figure out why you can't spell "delivery" without "devil" or "evil."

We just unloaded TWO trucks worth of boxes. 25 palettes. 300 boxes. 60,000 caps. On one of the hottest days of the year. Into a space with minimal, if any, ventilation. Good times.

We're also a bit limited in terms of storage space, so we had to figure out how to best stack the boxes, jenga-style, to make use of the vertical space without the boxes falling and crushing those of us below.

Somewhere along the way, Kevin thought it would be a good idea (or maybe just a funny one) to see if I could climb all the way to the top. Of course, like the fool that I am, I did. And now that I was up there, it was my job to stack those suckers as high as they would possibly go.

Now, I'm no science major, and maybe I'm not taking Maybach classes...but I do know that heat rises. And let me tell you something, it was as hot as...well, remember what I said before about the devil?

So there I am, climbing and crawling, with my back scraping against the top of a 30-foot ceiling, hitting my head on air ducts, and praying that those extra fries I had for lunch don't weigh enough to send me plummeting to my death, splattering on the concrete like Flat Rat.

As I got higher and higher, I started to enter a zen-like state, brought on by dehydration, asphyxiation, and asbestos inhalation. My ancestors came to me on the astral plane and told me that I had come full circle -- that in a previous life, I had been this guy. Maybe that's why it felt so natural. Or why I've always been fascinated by the pyramids.

Anyway, I snapped out of it, came back to earth, and we fit all the boxes in. But I pity the fool that has to UNload them. (JENGA!)

-- Dave

Behind the Beak

Jacob Osterhout -- a reporter from the Daily News -- was interested in our recent "Sandy Search," and decided to see what it would be like to get into character (and into costume) as Brooklyn's favorite bird.

He'll be here later on this afternoon for a "try-out" so we'll see how he fares. I can tell you from ain't as easy as it looks!

Check back later for more updates.

-- Dave

UPDATE: Jacob (as Sandy) surprised a group of kids from P.S. 86 in Bushwick, throwing them some t-shirts and challenging them to some races around the bases. Stay tuned to the Daily News for an upcoming story on the details of what it was like to go behind the beak...hopefully in the next week or so!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Tickets On Sale!

Single-game tickets are officially on sale, and we'll update the blog throughout the day with any fun facts.

There's a pretty nice line at the ballpark this morning, with phone lines and online orders buzzing. The first person in line slept here at 10pm last night. This is his fifth straight year being the first in line, I think. John Franco is also here (although he didn't sleep over) to meet with fans until about 11:00, so come to the ballpark to meet the Brooklyn legend!

9:32am: King Henry and his clown friends, Sandy, and the WFAN street team are here entertaining the crowd (and giving out free stuff). It's a beautiful day and the line just keeps growing!

10:58am: OK, we seem to have gotten through the first wave of in-person orders, with internet and phones still going strong. If you're in Coney, stop by.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Meeting Wrap-Up

Well, the NYPL Meetings have come to a close, and I’m in the airport on the way home. It was a good couple of days, filled with a variety of activities.

Our annual session with Joe and Tim from Eckerd College was, as usual, among the highlights of the trip. The session includes a series of exercises, surveys, and discussions centered on leadership and team-building. It’s extremely interesting to be evaluated, evaluate others, and share stories about how the different teams of the NYPL operate…the good, the bad, and the ugly. Hopefully we all learn from each other and learn a little bit about ourselves in the process. (This just in: Kevin Mahoney is a flaming introvert, Steve is not as caring or empathetic as he thinks he is, and I apparently do NOT bear a striking resemblance to Brad Pitt!)

At the general session the following day, members of the league give updates on their clubs, break into committees, and work together on various projects (marketing, scheduling, public relations, charitable foundation, etc.). This cooperative interaction is a relatively new concept among the league and has led to some very productive relationships and joint ventures. (It also sometimes leads to arguments that spawn creative and entertaining interleague wagers…but there’ll be more on that in the weeks to come.)

All in all, it was a productive trip that has the Cyclones' vision focused more sharply than ever (both philosophically and physically)!

Back in Brooklyn, our pre-sale for plan holders is going strong, and we're making the final preparations for Sunday, when we'll be putting tickets on sale to the general public, and welcoming John Franco to the ballpark!

It's supposed to be a beautiful day, so we hope to see you all there!

-- Dave

Monday, April 20, 2009

League Meetings

Steve, Kevin, and I are off to the New York-Penn League Meetings in sunny (I hope) Florida for a few days, where we'll meet with other league personnel, exchange ideas and updates (I'm sure everyone will be disappointed to hear about the delay in the blue carpeting), and participate in team-building and leadership seminars.

There's lots of big stuff going on back in Brooklyn, too (pre-sale for plan holders Thursday and Friday, tickets on sale to the public starting Sunday at 9, and a special appearance by Brooklyn's own John Franco), so I'll try to keep you up to date on the latest developments both at home and abroad throughout the week.

-- Dave

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Open House

This coming Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., the Brooklyn Cyclones will be holding an Open House to show potential Mini Plan & Season Ticket Holders exactly how awesome the view from their seats can be. No appointments necessary.

As you know, there are no bad seats in our house, and the views really are as awesome as advertised. Buy a plan with us, and you'll get the best of the best. You’ll sit so close, you’ll feel like you can wink at the pitcher, and he’ll actually see you. So close, you can detect whether the visiting team’s third baseman has been using his ProActiv regularly. So close, you’ll be able to whisper sweet nothings into the catcher’s ear.

The other advantage of our Open House is that you’ll finally get to meet face-to-face the members of the otherwise closed-off Ticket Office (I know you’ve been dying). We will all be present and ready to personally show you your seats and go over all the different options with you. To describe what you’ve been missing all this time, let me give you a brief, but wholly accurate, rundown of the T.O. members:

John Haley: the only one of us to boast a collegiate athletic career and a graduate of the distinguished Wesleyan University, John is at first a rock of stoicism who has trouble expressing effusive emotion. When you meet him in person, you can break down this wall by bringing up the following subjects, which will henceforth be referred to in this blog entry as...
Small talk tips: the NY Rangers, the legality of economic product bundling, inebriated crowds of girls who try to cling to him after Mets games (he denies this phenomenon, but I’ve witnessed it firsthand), and the charity bocce tournament he’s running this season at one of our games.

Patrick Toy: the self-elected “most lovable” member of the T.O., this native of New Hampshire displays an affable face and courteous demeanor that belie a rapier wit and quiet, seething judgment of your smallest faults (such as my tendency to not realize that he’s talking to me, after he’s spent twenty minutes explaining something, and my forcing him to start over). Like his doppelganger, Seth Rogen, Pat is quite funny, but his jokes don’t come on command (I’ve tried).
Small talk tips: anything and anyone from New Hampshire, and fantasy baseball. If you bring up fantasy players from New Hampshire, you will be his new soulmate.

Brandy Bercier: easily the most polite member of the group, She of the Enviable Hair is an undercover Red Sox fan (oops) and another native of New Hampshire. Brandy is a well-mannered, doe-eyed college grad, so be gentle with her and don’t go scaring her with tales of your down-and-dirty, streets-of-Brooklyn shenanigans. Ricky.
Small talk tips: Theo Epstein, her post-skiing knee affliction, the Car Show she’s organizing on July 19th

Katie Grenda: the most loquacious and gregarious member of the group, this girl can talk about anything under the sun. A native of Indiana, Katie is an expert on everything Colts-related. She can also contribute to discourse on current events, the Problem With The Youth Today, and the travails of the dating scene (and who doesn’t relate to that?).
Small talk tips: none needed.

Chris Nervegna: the most irreplaceable member of the ticket office (sorry, Pat, “intangible qualities” don’t count), you likely won’t see Chris, since he’s also the busiest member. He processes all of the Season Ticket and Mini Plan orders, as well as keeps abreast of the technical ins and outs of our ticketing system, while making sure that all the money we say is there is actually there. His is a stressful job, but weirdly, he’s always smiling. But if you want to actually see him or speak to him, you better be a holder of 10 Season Tickets, because unlike with the rest of us, his time comes at a calculable premium.
Small talk tips: It’s best to just state your business.

Me: I spend a lot of my time making Excel spreadsheets for Steve that get largely ignored in favor of a simple answer to “How’re we doing in ticket sales?!?” (The only acceptable response: “Great.”)
Small talk tips: the regrettable fame of Paris Hilton, the hipster appeal of political essayists David Rakoff and Sarah Vowell, anything related to lunch.

So...I hope that this rundown has encouraged you to put our Open House on your calendar. And if, for some reason, it’s had the opposite effect, just know that that’s my actual picture on the website. Yup. I look exactly. Like. Lucy. Liu. Come find out for yourself.

-- Joyce

Monday, April 13, 2009

Mailbag Monday!

Our previous installment of the mailbag was such a big hit that the questions have come flowing in from around the galaxy. This week's satchel is chock-full of questions from places like Brooklyn, California, Germany...and even Mars! Let's open it up and see what's inside...

Q: How exciting is it to see players make it to the majors after starting their careers in Brooklyn?
- Rob D., Bay Ridge

It's always a big thrill when one of our alumni makes it to the majors. We all play "scout" at some point or another, making predictions or pulling for our personal favorite guys. When a former Cyclone makes it to the big leagues, Brooklyn fans feel like they have a special connection to that player, and so do those of us in the front office. We all feel like we played a small role in his path to the bigs, and we root a little extra hard for someone with any type of roots in our borough. The back page of the Daily News when Danny Garcia became the first Cyclone in the majors is still hanging on my wall. There have been 20 others since then, and the list is growing each year.

What's funny is that it doesn't matter how long the player was in Brooklyn. Dan Murphy was only here for about 10 games, but to Cyclones fans, he'll always be one of ours.

Q: Why can’t I find any information on the website about when individual tickets go on sale?
- Joyce H.,

Our on-sale date is shrouded in secrecy, and the information is locked inside a vault inside a hatch 17 miles below the earth's surface. A former intern (we'll call him Billy) has been down there for months, and has to enter a specific sequence of numbers into a computer every 16 minutes, or else the world will end the on-sale date will be released into the atmosphere.

We're planning to release the on-sale date (and some other info) to the public early next week, so hang on, Billy. Hang on.

Q: Who would you rather spend a day with, Mike Piazza or the fictional character of Rocky Balboa?
- Commander Blorg, The Red Planet

Well, Commander, I don't know who is tutoring you on the intricacies of Earth's culture, but I can't figure out why you refer to Rocky as "fictional." He's as real as you or I.

With that being said, your question is a tough one. On one hand, you have one of the world's greatest athletes...a man who has transcended his sport to provide inspiration to millions, has risen from humble beginnings against all odds to become a legendary icon of his generation, has stared down his fiercest competitors to achieve everlasting glory, and has fought his way through every obstacle in his path to turn tragedy into triumph. And on the other hand, you have Rocky. And, well, he's done all those things, too.

It's almost impossible to choose. It's like when parents who have two kids tell you they don't love one more than the other...they just love them differently (which I still think was just a way to let my sister down easy). It's like the Sophie's Choice of pop culture.

When push comes to shove, though, I would have to choose Rocco. I have so many questions for him. What was it like to go the distance with Creed? Who punched harder, Drago or Clubber? How could Tommy Gunn have turned on you like that? Where can I get one of those robot maids?

Yup, I'd definitely spend the day with Rocky...but maybe we'll call Mikey P. just to talk.

Q: If you could have any pitcher past or present have to make a rehab start for the Cyclones who would you want see?
- Lucy L., Hollywood, CA

Obviously, there are some tough choices here, too. Who wouldn't want to see Cy Young, Bob Feller, Bob Gibson, Nolan Ryan, etc. take the mound one more time. But for me, personally, I'd have to go with Dwight Gooden, circa 1985 or '86. I grew up with that team, and the '86 Mets were my heroes (still are, for that matter).

We've had HoJo, Bobby Ojeda, Tim Teufel, Mookie, Gary Carter, Darryl Strawberry, and my all-time favorite, Keith Hernandez, at KeySpan Park, so seeing Doctor K in a Cyclones uni would just about make my baseball life complete.

Q: If you were to try and sell a Mini Plan to our president which one would you try and sell him?
- Dave T., Bensonhurst

The obvious answer in the Fireworks Plan, since it includes his night -- Baracklyn Cyclones Night on June 23rd -- and lots of fireworks shows, which are synonymous with patriotism. But that's too easy.

Maybe he'd like the Grub Club since it's a stmulus plan for families, filled with free food and low-priced tickets. Still too easy.

The Prez is a busy man, obviously, so maybe he'd like to unwind with the family on Saturdays and Sundays with a Weekend Plan...or maybe use the Hump Day plan to help him get through the work week with a Wednesday pick-me-up.

Mr. Obama is a sports enthusiast, and a competitor, so maybe he'd be more interested in the Rivals Plan, in which he can watch some of the most high-intensity games of the year...or the We Win, You Win Plan, in which every Cyclones victory leads to free tickets.

With a wife, two daughters, a new dog, and a new job, he's probably used to scrambling a bit, so maybe the Scramble Plan would appeal to his frenetic new lifestyle.

The bottom line is that there's a Mini Plan for everyone, even the President, and I'm sure he can find the right one in less time (and with much less of a hassle) than it took to settle on Bo.

Why doesn’t Relish ever win?
- Nathan S., Coney island

He's won a couple of races throughout the years, but everyone's favorite underDOG is a little, well, goofy, to put it nicely, and he's not the most athletically gifted of weiners. He's also easily distracted, and a little bit gullible, so Ketchup and Mustard use that to their advantage.

I've seen ol' Relly in the weight room quite a bit this offseason, though. He's been hitting the weights (literally, he just stands there and hits them...I don't think he quite understands), and running on the treadmill (sometimes it's even turned on), so I think he's primed for a big year. Don't count him out just yet.

To submit your question to the mailbag, send an email to and maybe, just maybe, we'll make you famous.

-- Dave

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Bellies & Baseball

From the lead story regarding Bellies & Baseball: A Salute to Pregnancy:
The Cyclones are expecting one of the most unique nights of the season on July 19th. Moms-to-be, in particular, are due to have lots of fun.
OK, I admit, a little cheesy...but Bellies & Baseball is just too much fun, and there are just so many word plays that you really have to labor through the temptation to overuse puns. (Sorry. I'm like an addict. I can't stop.)

In case you hadn't heard, Bellies & Baseball will feature unique and humorous pregnancy-themed entertainment, activities, and prizes. (It does not have anything to do with this.)

Among my personal favorite events of the night are:
  • Barefoot & Pregnant: Expectant moms can run (or, more likely, walk) the bases with no shoes on before the game
  • Craving Station: A table on the Concourse level will offer pickles, ice cream, anchovy pizza, etc. for pregnant women who crave more than the usual ballpark fare
  • Special Delivery: Any woman who gives birth at the ballpark before the end of the game gets free Cyclones Season Tickets for life for each member of her new family
And the best one of all...
  • 7th Inning Stretch Marks: Pregnant women will be allowed onto the field in the 7th inning to sing Take Me Out to the Ballgame
And really, that's just some of what's in store. You can read the entire official press release here.

So if you're pregnant -- or, ahem, working on it -- make your plans now to gather with others who are also knocked up carrying a bun in the oven sporting a baby bump in the same boat on July 19th for a night of labor-related laughs.

-- Dave

Monday, April 6, 2009


With apologies to The Sports Guy, we at the Blog are happy to bust open our own mailbag, filled with comments and questions from you, the loyal readers. Without further ado, let's see what the mailbag brings us today:

Q: Seeing eight former Brooklyn players on MLB Opening Day rosters made me think...who is your all-time favorite Cyclone?
-- Jack J., Mill Basin

Very tough question. Most of my "favorites" are in that category because of their personalities, or their interactions with fans or front-office staff off the field, rather than straight performance or talent. And sometimes both things overlap. The short answer is that my "favorite" players ever were Ross Peeples and Brett Kay, from the 2001 squad. They were both great players that year, but they were even better people, and helped the Cyclones almost as much off the field as they did on it. And that's saying a lot. The most exciting player I've ever seen play here was probably Ambiorix Concepcion, who could do it all.

Q: What's in store for the fans this year that we haven't seen before?
-- Mark L., Bay Ridge

I like to think there's something at every game that you haven't seen before! At any given moment, a pink ape might start throwing t-shirts into the crowd, a giant seagull might start shooting a water gun at the opposing team, fireworks might go off in the middle of the game, there might be a sword fight in front of the dugout, or you might see pirates, superheroes, clowns, fire breathers, or the majors' next big star.

In terms of specifics, this summer will bring you the Baracklyn Cyclones (June 23), Ode to Odd Sports Night (July 15), a paint-it-yourself bobblehead (July 19), and some other fun stuff we're expecting that I can't quite divulge just yet. Check out the whole Promo Schedule for more details.

Q: Why are you always picking on Gary?
-- Gary P., Staten Island

He just makes it so easy.

Q: I keep hearing the Coney Island is "closed." Is that true? And what does that mean?
-- Ken H., Huntington

Nothing could be further from the truth. Coney Island officially opened this past weekend, and there is lots in store for the upcoming summer. The Cyclone roller coaster, Deno's Wonder Wheel, and other attractions will still thrill (and chill) riders of all ages. Nathan's and the New York Aquarium are still "musts" for the Big Apple's tourists and long-time residents alike. There are weekly concerts and fireworks shows, parades, sideshows, the hot-dog eating contest, the beach, the boardwalk, and, of course, Cyclones baseball.

Coney Island is still one of the best, most exciting, most interesting places to spend a summer day or night. As the slogan says, it's really fun, and really open.

Q: How can I get my question answered in a mailbag blog entry?
Jill R., Park Slope

You just did! Send any and all mailbag questions to, and then stay tuned.

-- Dave

Friday, April 3, 2009


Or, in this case, almost no action. None, whatsoever -- at least not for me.

KeySpan Park played host to a commercial starring Johan Santana and CC Sabathia this morning, which was pretty cool. Santana looked just about exactly as I thought he would (although Gary uncomfortably noted that he was "much more handsome" than he imagined), and Sabathia...well, he is about the size of a Tyrannosaurus Rex, as compared with most humans.

Big John Haley (who didn't look so big anymore, compared to Sabathia), Miguel, and I were asked to be "extras" in the commercial, and told to bring our gloves and spikes. Upon arrival, we were then told to "report to wardrobe" and get fitted for our uniforms. I got the Mets-colored uni, while John and Miggy got the other one...which is a good thing, because I would have protested, boycotted, and stormed off the set if it was the other way around.

So, the three of us suited up, and waited for our monumental on-screen debuts.

And then we waited.

And waited.

And waited some more.

Two hours later, we eventually decided to take matters into our own hands and stand in the hallway, hoping to be noticed and asked to do something...anything.

We were. We were asked to move.

Luckily, our new holding pen location offered some food, so we attacked the spread like veterans. After another half hour of waiting (and eating), Steve told us to go back to our desks. About 10 minutes later, one of the million crew members who had taken over the clubhouse poked his head into my office and told us the shoot was over.

We had been snubbed!

Still all dressed up in our nameless, logoless uniforms, we at least wanted some proof of this experience, so the three of us weaseled our way into getting a quick picture with the two star pitchers:

I wished Johan good luck this season, and told Sabathia...well, I didn't want to be disingenuous, so I really didn't say anything to him, but he wouldn't have heard me all the way up there anyway.

And just like that, it was over.

Ahhh, the life of an extra. I was prepared to be "discovered" today, but it was just not meant to be. Maybe next time. Until then, I'll just keep waiting. And waiting. And waiting.

-- Dave

Thursday, April 2, 2009

10 (or so) Things to Know

Andrew Stern began a part-time position with the Cyclones in January, and he already fits in well with the staff (believe me, that is not a compliment, or an endorsement of his mental state of well-being). Today, he breaks into the big-time with his first blog entry. Here it is -- the Top 10 Things You Should Know About The Cyclones, as witnessed by Andrew in his first few months with the team, and his intensive studies of the club's recent history. A word of advice...don't believe everything you read (and Andrew, don't believe everything we tell you):

  • Last summer, 11 of the Mets’ top 15 draft picks played in Brooklyn, including first pick, first-baseman Ike Davis; second pick, shortstop Reese Havens; and third pick (and Sterling Award winner), pitcher Brad Holt.
  • The Cyclones have infiltrated virtually every internet social networking venue known to man. Look for us on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and of course, here at the Blog. Up next… and Glogging!
  • We've hired the San Diego Chicken as a consultant to give closed-door pep talks to Sandy and Pee Wee before every home game.
  • On April 19th, we are hosting an Open House in which fans can take a tour of the ballpark. Those in attendance can also check out views and purchase Season Tickets or Mini-Plans for the exact seats that they want.
  • For just one game this summer, we are changing our name. On June 23rd we will become the Baracklyn Cyclones, as we salute the 44th president of the United States with baseball, entertainment, and of course bobbleheads.
  • We are saluting pregnant women this season! Why? Because someone should. And besides, being pregnant is tough, especially in the summer! The ladies need something to look forward to...besides the birth of the child they are carrying, that is.
  • We are planning to set a world record this summer. More on this in the near future.
  • We have enough creative Mini Plan options to satisfy even the pickiest fan. And I know from picky fans...I monitor the general e-mailbox.
  • Through much research it has been determined that a hot dog and a soda at a Cyclones game can prevent blindness. The same study found that buying a few ‘Grub Club’ Mini Plans can lead to 20/10 vision. Don’t believe us? You should. It’s science. You’ll see...that is, unless you don’t come to Cyclones games, because then I guess you might not see.
  • We've scheduled so many fireworks shows this summer that the Brooklyn fire marshal is on Steve Cohen’s speed dial. So many shows that the 4th of July will look like snakes and sparklers in comparison. So many shows that there will be enough explosives here to make Wile E. Coyote blush.
  • 2009 Cyclones ticket stubs are redeemable for free admission to the Taj Mahal in India.
  • The fantasy baseball phenomenon was invented by a couple of Cyclones fans who were upset that they weren’t managing the Cyclones.
  • Last year the Cyclones had the top two starting pitchers in the NYPL in Brad Holt and Chris Schwinden. Holt was 5-3 with a 1.87 ERA and 96 strikeouts. Schwinden was 4-1 with a 2.01 ERA and 84 strikeouts. Both were NYPL All-Stars.
  • June 21st is not only Father’s Day, but we’re also hosting a wedding on the field before the game. (“Well, candlesticks always make a nice gift.” – Larry Hockett, Bull Durham)
  • In 2009, as always…The Cyclones ARE Brooklyn!
-- Andrew

Editor's Note: Yes, there are 15 items in Andrew's Top 10...I told you he fits in nicely.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009


Ahh, April Fool's Day. The one day a year you can say just about anything to anyone, and play it off as a prank. After kicking around a few ill-fated ideas ("Cyclones Move to Los Angeles") and fumbling a few others ("Operation Hidden Camera"), it doesn't seem like much will come to pass this April 1st around the ol' Cyclones office. (Or, will it? Mwah hah hah hah ha!)

My favorite April Fool's prank of all time is, of course, The Curious Case of Sidd Finch (Sports Illustrated, April 1, 1985). I've gotten to work with the Mets' legendary PR man, Jay Horwitz, over the years, and he shared some of the backstory with me. It's really pretty amazing that so many people fell for it, despite how over-the-top George Plimpton, SI, Jay, and all the other participants made the story.

From the 168-MPH fastball to the acronym in the subtitle to the mystical Tibetan monastery in which he learned to pitch to his
eccentric on-field footwear, everything about the Sidd Finch story screamed that it just couldn't be true. But maybe that's what made Mets fans want to believe it so badly. I mean, to be a Mets fan, you gotta believe, right?

If you've never read it, or if you just need to refresh your memory, go read the article today. It's a classic. One of my absolute favorite pieces of writing ever, and definitely my favorite prank ever pulled.

-- Dave