Some members of Mattituck High School’s state championship baseball team enjoyed a rare opportunity to see the Mets up close and visit the broadcast booth at Citi Field on Thursday afternoon.
What Mattituck’s coach, Steve DeCaro, described as a “wacky, play-it-by-ear day,” involved a bus ride to Flushing, Queens, along with three of his players and his assistant coach, Rich Pisacano, to watch the Mets play and get a behind-the-scenes view of Citi Field in the process. DeCaro said the trip was orchestrated by Pisacano’s father, Steve, who has friends with the club.
Chris Dwyer, Will Gildersleeve and Joe Tardif were the players who made the memorable trip. Before the game against the Colorado Rockies, the Tuckers were taken to the Ralph Kiner Television Booth in the press box where they met the SNY play-by-play announcer, Gary Cohen, and SNY analyst Ron Darling, a former Mets pitcher.
Another thrill awaited the Tuckers during the fourth inning, under a brilliant blue sky, when the scoreboard flashed these words: “Mets WELCOME MATTITUCK HIGH SCHOOL 2015 STATE CHAMPS.”
DeCaro and Rich Pisacano were both ready to shoot photos of the scoreboard message. “That was a big thrill, too, which is now the background of every computer I own,” said DeCaro.
The Tuckers won their first state championship this past spring, defeating Livonia in the New York Class B final, capping a 27-1 season. It is the first state title in Mattituck’s 95-year history of playing baseball.
Top top things off Thursday, the first-place Mets won, 12-3, for a four-game sweep of the Rockies, extending their lead atop the National League East.
For a longtime Mets fan like DeCaro, that’s a pretty good day. Asked how the experience rated with him, DeCaro said: “I would say being treated this way by the team you have rooted for since you jumped on the bandwagon in 1969 [the year the Mets won the World Series], this was pretty fun. Not quite as fun as winning the state championship or your children being born, but this was up there.”
“It was a fantastic day,” he continued. “It was very cool.”
Photo Caption: Members of Mattituck High School’s state champion baseball team were welcomed by the New York Mets on the Citi Field scoreboard. (Credit: Courtesy photo)