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Neil Allen
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Neil Allen
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Neil Allen
Neil Allen
Ultimate Mets Database popularity ranking: 77 of 1043 players
Neil Patrick Allen
Born: January 24, 1958 at Kansas City, Kan.
Throws: Right Bats: Right
Height: 6.02 Weight: 190

Neil Allen was the most popular Ultimate Mets Database daily lookup on April 22, 2008, June 15, 2008, May 26, 2010, January 21, 2011, June 8, 2011, April 9, 2014, February 2, 2017, February 12, 2017, and October 3, 2017.


First Mets game: April 15, 1979
Last Mets game: June 13, 1983

Winner of National League Player of the Week award, July 6, 1980, August 23, 1981. (New York Mets)

Share your memories of Neil Allen


Mark Simon
I went to a baseball card show in 1983, right before he was traded. He was the autograph guest. My dad had made an iron-on of his rookie card and put it on a t- shirt. When Neil Allen saw that, he was flabbergasted. He couldn't believe it. He told me he would try to win a game for me. He won his next appearance. Then he was a Cardinal. I remember how disappointed I was when I heard on the radio that he was being traded.

In 1979, his rookie season, Neil Allen lived one block away from me on 169th Street in Hillcrest. He shared a house with Alex Trevino and (for part of the year) with Sergio Ferrer. I went over one day and got his autograph. It was the first autograph and first ballplayer I ever met. He sometimes would play catch in the street with Trevino and the neigborhood kids.

The saddest moment I ever experienced as a Met fan was listening to the ballgame in April of 1983 when the Mets lost a big 9th inning lead to the Phillies and Neil Allen gave up a game-winning grand slam homer to Bo Diaz. I almost broke down and cried. I couldn't believe the Mets had let that one get away. That was the beginning of the end for Neil. After that Jesse Orosco became the closer and by June Neil was gone.

Allen was a bright spot for the Mets in the early '80, he was always near the top on saves (the only Met player near the top in any top category in the league.)

The TV play by play guys had little to be excited about in those games, but was always playing up Allen's "flare for the dramatic" (Allen would save games, but not before loading the bases and have a terrific play save his back-side.)

People forgot he was Whitey's best pitcher for the second half of '83.

March 18, 2001
Whatever his baseball shortcomings were, he was a pretty good pitcher and decent guy. Not the worst combination in the world.

June 27, 2001
Was a decent closer on those awful early 80's teams. The Mets traded him just in time. He started a trend of blowing games that he took with him to St. Louis. Now he's the pitching coach for the Staten Island Yankees. Another former Met coaching in the Yankee organization. It makes me sick.

July 17, 2001
One day in 1983, after he'd blown a game the night before, Allen tied one on and was so hung over he called in "sick" the next day using the excuse that his wife had a, er, female emergency. He was traded for Keith Hernandez a month later.

Andy Curran
July 27, 2001
I used to love how he would come into a game and throw his first warm-up pitch over the catcher's head to the backstop. That always got the crowd going! I was in Philadelphia for a wedding in 1980, and the Mets were playing the Phillies in a twi-night doubleheader. You could see Veterans Stadium from the reception hotel. The reception stunk, and I wanted to leave to go to the games, but I wasn't able to. The next morning I picked up the Inquirer and saw that Neil won the first game and saved the second. I was really ticked that I didn't go. I have been living in Cincinnati since 1984. In 1990, after Cleveland gave up on him, the Reds invited him to spring training. I was really excited, but they released him before the regular season.

August 22, 2001
It was 1979 and I Think Neil was pitching, but it was another night of losing during an abyss of a season. Anyway It was late in the game with Neil (I think ) on the mound and getting hit hard, and Steve Albert says something to that effect, to which Bob Murphy replies (And I swear this is true) "Well Steve, it's like trying to play the piano without a stool... You're gonna get hit...) I don't think Steve said another word that inning and after 22 Years I STILL don't know what he meant!

Jim Snedeker
November 16, 2001
Neil always seemed up, like a little kid who was loving life and sometimes was carried away with his enthusiasm. He was on Kiner's Korner one time, all smiles, cracking jokes and going on and on about the game: "Wow, Ralph, what a game! I learned so much from facing just that one guy in that one at-bat! You know, even after pitching in the majors for a few years, I'm still learning stuff every day! Hey--I'll bet you still learn something new every day, too!"

Ralph paused for a beat, and deadpanned: "The last thing I learned is that I was washed up."

John R
May 15, 2002
In the minor leagues, Neil was a successful starter in the Mets organization. His manager was Jack Aker. The major league club wanted Neil to be a closer, Jack told him that the closers role would take too much of a toll on Neil's arm. Jack was right and Neil had arm trouble throughout his career.

Larry Burns
June 10, 2002
A pretty good closer in his time (on some pretty horrible teams). He will forever be remembered as the guy who the Cardinals took in exchange for Keith Hernandez---might be the greatest Mets trade ever! He squandered his talents over the nightlife and booze. I heard that a bartender at a Manhattan bar said he had not seen someone drink that hard since the days of "Bottoms Up" Bill Holden. He was a colorful character on the Mets---with the wild warmup pitch, and slight offbeat persona. With some pretty awful teams he was a crowd favorite. I remember him beating the Expos ---- he was particulary dominant. With regards to the booze, he was another sad case of "what might have been."

June 13, 2002
Terry Puhl and Jose Cruz of the Astros loved this guy. Gave up alot of heartbreaking homers. Real good 12 to 6 curve. Never forget the day we got "Mex" for him and Rick Ownbey. I called Sportsphone to get the night's pitching match-ups. When I heard the trade I called back 3 times, because I could believe it! I jumped up so high that I broke a shelf in my mother's kitchen. Neil was one of the few guys that actually had talent on those early '80 teams. Be worth millions as a set-up guy today.

Harvey Poris
July 16, 2002
I met him last year at a Cyclones-Staten Island Yankee Game. Allen was pitching coach for the Yanks. I was wearing a Mets cap and asked him for an autograph. Allen signed and said, "I always consider myself a Met, but don't tell Steinbrenner."

January 23, 2003
He was a ballplayer you heard nice things about from people who met him. Perhaps he had an unusual perspective or was less egotistical as a result of having been raised by two parents who were both deaf. After the ninth inning grand slam referred to in one of the previous comments, he declared himself an alcoholic and went in for treatment, but they sent him back and told him he wasn't really an alcoholic.

Joe Figliola
January 30, 2003
My parents and I (age 17 then) went to a Mets/Cubs game in Sept., 1980. The game was memorable for numerous reasons: the Mets won and broke a long losing streak; I got to see the future in the form of Mookie Wilson, Hubie Brooks, and Ed Lynch; there were about 4,000 fans on a very dank, overcast day; and Neil Allen holding court with a couple of fans prior to the game.

We were sitting in loge box seats along the first base line. The seats practically hugged the last row of field level seats. When I saw Neil with the fans, my mom suggested I go down and talk to him. I explained to her that entry to the field level was gated and that you needed a ticket to get through. I then half-jokingly said, "Why don't I climb over?" Mom then said, "Why not?" I was surprised that she would encourage to do something crazy like that. Unfortunately, I didn't do it, because I was fearful that a security guard would see me do it and I'd be kicked out of the park. So I got to see one of my favorite Mets from a distance.

Neil did spend about a half hour with the two or three fans. I thought that was really cool. He was a much better reliever than as a starter, and Met fans should be fortunate that he was with the Amazin's when Keith Hernandez was available.

Maxwell Kates
March 17, 2004
I don't know that Neil was the product of deaf parentage, but one of the Cardinals media guides cites that his father was blind for the better part of Neil's life.

Wasn't Neil Allen mentioned in that Mike Myers disco movie as one of the celebrities who frequented Studio 54? One of my friends tells me that Neil used to show up at 54 wearing his Mets cap. I can't account for the anecdote's veracity, but it does make for interesting Mets-lore.

October 7, 2004
Neil was constantly blowing games, one after the other. He then went to management and said that he had a drinking problem that needed to be addressed and that it had contributed to his declining performance. Tom Seaver said that Neil did not have a drinking problem as he could not drink, 2 beers and he was out of it. Seaver basically went on to say that the reason he was blowing games was because he sucked, not because he had a drinking problem. Drinking was just an excuse for his poor outings claimed Seaver. Well, he finally stopped drinking and he still SUCKED. Perhaps Seaver was correct?

Lifelong Fan
July 10, 2005
He lost it when he changed his number to 13 and the first warm up pitch to the catcher when on the mound used to deliberately be sent onto the screen. You could tell Stearns just wanted to kick his butt.

July 25, 2005
Without Allen, we would not have gotten Keith. That alone should make Allen a treasured Met.

Roy Sinnott
April 5, 2006
When I was a young boy living in San Diego, a family friend of my parents knew Neil Allen personally and introduced me to him. At that time, a young boy meeting a professional baseball player was every kids dream. Neil played with the Mets, and having both parents born and raised in NYC, we are naturally Mets fans. Everytime the Mets played in San Diego at Jack Murphy Stadium, waiting for us were tickets to the game curtoisy of Neil. I would get baseballs autographed by Neil and others autographed by every player on the team at that time. I still have every one of them safe and sound. I also have every card he ever gave me with his signature "The greatest fan I've got." Ever since I moved from San Diego, I lost touch with him and miss my friend. I came across this page by accident and wanted to let other fans know what a great guy he is and he what he gave to his fans was more than just the excitement of the game.

October 27, 2007
I was a huge Met's fan from 1979-1981. In 1981 I attended 51 home games! Neil was sooooo nice to everybody; a very sweet guy and a little naive. I hung out with a group of girls at the stadium, and we somehow acquired the team address list. I had Neil's phone number and during the off- season would call him up at his home in Kansas to chat. He always did. Such a friendly guy!

May 8, 2012
I met Neil when he first came to New York. He was sweet and handsome. He asked me to come by to see the house he may buy from Lee Mazzilli. We made plans to BBQ and spend some time together. I was soo thrilled, he was so handsome. Well he went on to be a star. I spent some time at Shea watching him practice and play.

Jonathan Stern
May 23, 2012
With Rick Ownbey, the losing end of the greatest trade in Mets history. Interestingly, Allen was thrilled to be traded for Keith Hernandez. He enthused to the media something along the lines of he was traded for a somebody. Years from then, people will ask, "Who was Hernandez traded for?" Okay, but I'm not sure I would want to be remembered as part of the losing end of a trade that benefited one team.

He is now in demand as a pitching coach.

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