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Memories of
Casey Stengel
Casey Stengel
Inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame, 1966
Inducted into the New York Mets Hall of Fame, 1981
Charles Dillon Stengel
Born: July 30, 1890 at Kansas City, Mo.
Died: September 29, 1975 at Glendale, Cal.
Throws: Left Bats: Left
Height: 5.11 Weight: 175

Non-playing roles with Mets
  • Manager 1962 - 1965
  • Vice President 1966 - 1975

Share your memories of Casey Stengel


Coach HoJo 20
April 3, 2001
The guy just had fun being a manager. He had maybe a bit too much fun and didn't take his job seriously. But I don't mind the guy made it fun to be a Mets fan during the initial rough years of the franchise.

January 30, 2002
I believe Casey, upon being named Manager of the Mets, came to the podium to give a speech, cleared his throat, and began "It's a great honor for me to be joining the Knickerbockers." After winning 2 games in a row in 62, Casey stayed up all night on a flight to Houston, went to his room after landing and told a coach to tell reporters "I'm being embalmed." Rumor has it the hip injury which led to his retirement occurred either while he was in the bathroom at Toots Shor's, or getting into a car after leaving Toots Shor's. Nobody really knows for sure. One of Baseball's all time most colorful characters.

J. Eckert
April 6, 2002
There was a 60's, 70's quiz show on TV called the Match Game, on which Yankee players at times appeared. I tuned in one day, and recognized Mantle and Ford on the set. They were finishing some comments, then stopped and turned out of respect as some funny little old man, who had somehow gotten on this show too, maybe as a lucky fan, started garbling something unintelligible. He was obviously flustered or something being among all those baseball stars. No, wait, look closer, it was Casey.

May 16, 2003
Casey was a clown and the Mets were a joke when he managed them, but never forget what he did with the Yankees -- 10 pennants in 12 years! That makes him one of the greatest managers ever. He didn't have much to work with when he took over the Mets.

June 5, 2003
Stengel was perfect for the 1962 Mets. His Stengelese with the writers was usually the highlight of the game story in the newspapers. I recall the day Marv Throneberry hit a ball to the right of the bullpen in right field at the Polo Grounds. Throneberry made it to third base. The Cardinals appealed claiming Throneberry did not touch second. The umpire agreed. Stengel was on his way to dispute the call. Cookie Lavegetto told Stengel to forget it Throneberry also missed first base. At the end of that dreadful season Stengel allegedly told the players it was a team effort. They were not good but at least they were consistent.

Tim S
June 27, 2003
One afternoon Casey was holding court with a group of sportswriters. They were discussing players on the roster. Casey points a gnarled old finger at Greg Goosen and proclaims, "See that kid out there? He's 20 years old and has a chance to be a real star!" Then a few moments later points to another player, ( don't know who) and says, "And do ya see that kid out there? Why, he's 20 and in 10 years has a chance to be 30!"

Joe Figliola
July 4, 2003
I think Casey and Rogers Hornsby are the only men who were born in the 19th century to wear a Mets uniform. How's that for a bit of trivia? There's probably someone else, but as far as I know, the legacy of the present-day Mets begins with Casey's birth in 1890 (Rogers came along six years later).

flushing flash
July 4, 2003
Tim S -- you are close, but your facts are a little skewed. Ed Kranepool was the player about whom Casey said "he's 20, and in ten years he has a chance to be a star." Greg Goossen was the one about whom he said "he's also 20, and in ten years he has a chance to be 30."

Feat Fan
June 9, 2004
Vintage Casey:

"They have shown me ways to lose I never knew existed." - on his 1962 Mets

"The only thing worse than a Mets game is a Mets double header." - on his 1962 Mets

"Nobody knows this [yet], but one of us has just been traded to Kansas City." - to outfielder Bob Cerv

"They examined all my organs. Some of them are quite remarkable and others are not so good. A lot of museums are bidding for them." - after being hospitalized for two weeks

Kevin C. Delahanty, MD
June 12, 2004
One of my prized possessions (& I have many) is a personal letter from Casey Stengel written in response to a letter from me when he was hospitalized with his broken hip. He thanked me for my concern and hoped that "one day you'll be a member of the Amazing Mets."

The only thing that would get me to part with that letter is if that wish could come true...

Jonathan Stern
February 7, 2005
There were players on the early-60's Mets who hated Casey. He used them as material to entertain fans and reporters, while rarely accepting blame himself. He referred to one of them as a "lower intestine" and told countless cruel jokes at his own players' expense. He also fell asleep during games. Even those who defend him, like Duke Snider, have documented that.

There were other players such as Swoboda, McGraw, and Kranepool, who knew what Casey was up to and accepted it, then became winners later on. With no other reason for fans to come to the Polo Grounds, Stengel played it for laughs... while insisting that the players conduct themselves as much as possible like professionals. When Jimmy Piersall ran around the bases backwards after hitting his 100th career homer off Dallas Green, Stengel immediately had him traded. "There's only room for one comedian on this team," he growled. It worked. Fans came out in droves to watch the Mets lose an average of 113 games a year over a four year period. And here we are, at the dawn of the franchise's 44th season.

I think I'll go with the latter Casey over the former. The Mets had good reason for retiring his number. Is it possible for a number to be created for the entire 1962 team. And for that number to be retired, too?

April 19, 2006
I don't think his number should have been retired by the Mets.

Carole K
October 5, 2006
Who can forget the clip of the great Casey talking about"the Metsies....the kids with the placards....all saying Metsies....Metsies..."

He was a classic. Baseball could use some of that personality today.

Menachem G. Jerenberg
September 7, 2007
Casey was such an absolute NUT, but he was good nut. I don't think anybody else would have fitted so perfectly as manager of one of worst teams in baseball history (the '62 Mets). He was funny! And just, we got him AND Yogi Berra to manage us... the two Clown Princes of Baseball. The Yankees also got managed by both of them, but the difference was that there they were appreciated just for winning games. By us they were STARS.

Kevin C. Delahanty, MD
January 6, 2009
The official Mets website has an auction going on, selling off Shea Stadium memorabilia. One of the things being offered is Caey's retired number from the outfield wall.

I thought it was typical of the mystique of the Yankees to bring in dirt from the old Yankee Stadium to the new. This is part of what makes the Yankees an honor-bound organization.

Why can't the Mets see the value in heritage?

August 11, 2009
One of my favorite I-Pod recordings is him promoting the Mets and referring to the "placards" at the Polo Grounds. It is interesting to note as (Vin Scully would say) that Casey played or managed at four different NY National League Parks between 1912 to 1965 (Washington Park, Ebbets Field, Polo Grounds and Shea Stadium) You can look it up!! The plaza near the old right field Gate E pavilion at Shea was officially named "Casey Stengel Plaza." It is a crying shame that Mr. Wilpon will only honor people with Dodger affiliation.

Get's by Buckner
July 6, 2012

While watching one of the Mets Yearbooks from either '63 or '64, I couldn't stop laughing after Casey accepts the Mayor's Trophy from the Mayor of NY and says "This is one of the greatest thrills of my life!" The guy won so many World Series from that other team in NY, you would think that was a thrill for him. I guess it was his way of giving them a "Bronx Cheer" so to speak!

NYB Buff
October 22, 2015
Poor Casey! After all those championships his team across town won for him, he spent his last four years as a manager with the newly-formed and undeveloped Mets. The team's yearly win totals in seasons with him are incredibly low. This is evident when compared to later seasons that were not fully played:

In 1981, the Mets compiled a total of 41 wins in a season that had two months of games cancelled by a players' strike. Casey's team in 1962 won 40.

In 1994, the Mets had 55 wins in a season that ended in August because of another strike. The most wins the team had in a year under Stengel was 53 in 1964.

These are examples of just how bad the Mets were during those early years with Casey. Thankfully, things did get better. They couldn't get worse!

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