The Lee Mazzilli Curse

Mets PoliceSenior Analyst IJanuary 29, 2009

There has been some talk in Metsdom lately of the Keith Hernandez curse. Surely it's been mostly from bloggers looking for something to write about on an otherwise cold quiet morning.

Clearly there is no Hernandez curse, but I am here to tell you about the Lee Mazzilli curse.

Mazzilli, as you might know, was the golden child of the late 70s and should have had a 15-year run in centerfield.

But wait, the Mets had to give the job to that Mookie guy and trade Lee away for some "prospects" that essentially wound up being Ron Darling and Howard Johnson.

Lee moved on to the Texas Rangers, who turned their back on him after 58 games. How many World Series has Texas won since?

He went to the Yankees, who also shunned him.

How many World Series did the Yankees win before they discovered the Mazzilli curse and hired Lee's old Mets manager?

Off to Pittsburgh.

The Pirates have not won the World Series since they released him in 1986.

Meanwhile, the Mets had put together a good club, but they couldn't get over the hump. So they brought Mazzilli back in 1986. Bingo, championship.

When Mazzilli returned, surefire future Hall of Famer Dwight Gooden was now wearing Lee's old No. 16. Doc offered it to Mazzilli, but Lee being a gentleman wasn't going to take his number.

That was Gooden's biggest mistake and the curse of Lee Mazzilli led Doc to drugs and a ruined career.

On to Toronto in 1989. When did the Mets start to suck? That's right, right around 1989!

The Jays finished first that year, and Mazzilli knowing he had taught the Jays how to win, knew he could retire and leave the Jays on their own to win two World Series titles.

In his post-playing days, Mazzilli coached under for Joe Torre for the New York Yankees, who saw the magic expire after Lee left following the 2003 World Series. Joe tried to bring "The Mazz" magic back in 2006, but it was not meant to be.

As for the Orioles, the only curses stronger than the Mazzilli one are those in Chicago and the curse of Peter Angelos.

No force can help with those.

The Mets Police fully support Jerry "Gangsta" Manuel, but he would be wise to ask Mazzilli to suit up in a No. 16 uni and sit next to him to end the team's 23-year drought.

Or they could sign Manny Ramirez.

Either one will do the trick.


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