Shea Stadium has been one of the most influential places of my life. My first game was with my father when I was only about 8 years old, during the 1994 season. He won some kind of contest, and we got to go on the mound with the other contest-winners and throw out the first pitch.
I don't remember this much, but I was on the Shea Stadium mound (there's a picture in my house somewhere to prove it) and I did go down into the Mets dugout and bullpen. I remember Jose Vizcaino, the Mets' shortstop at the time who later broke our hearts during the 2000 World Series, came over to me and said, "Hey, kid!" and rubbed my messy brown hair.
Yet the most significant memory I take from this day was when I first walked through the tunnel and into the stands to behold the baseball field for the first time. This was during the dark ages of the Mets, when they were really horrible, so there were practically no fans in attendance.
Then there was a rain delay, and the place really emptied out. Nevertheless, this was my definitive moment in my life when I declared myself a METS FAN.
OK, moving on. I've only gone to about 30 Mets games in my life, including a playoff game against the Dodgers in 2006. They have never won a game that I went to with my father, so when I found out that we had tickets for the third-to-last game at Shea, I was very apprehensive about going, since it was a must-win game.
And, in the end, I regret going, as the Mets did end up losing a terrible game.
Hopefully we will have better luck in Citi Field...if we can even get tickets.