From First to Worst

The New York Mets, 1973–1977, Revised edition


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SKU: 9781476693729 Categories: , , Tags: ,

About the Book

The “Miracle Mets” of 1969 had great hopes and enormous expectations for the coming decade. Unfortunately, they would be forced to watch hopes and dreams slowly fade to despair. This book details the Mets’ climb from last place in August of 1973 to within one game of the world championship, followed by annual struggles and a collapse in 1977. The revised edition expands on the failures of the last two seasons of the decade, which necessitated the Payson family’s decision to sell the beloved franchise.

About the Author(s)

Accountant Jacob Kanarek is a member of the Society for American Baseball Research. He lives in Lakewood, New Jersey.

Bibliographic Details

Jacob Kanarek
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 263
Bibliographic Info: 50 photos, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2024
pISBN: 978-1-4766-9372-9
eISBN: 978-1-4766-5215-3
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Foreword by Jerry Koosman 1
Preface 3
Introduction 5
1 ◆ A Battle Cry Is Born 11
2 ◆ The Dog Days of August 31
3 ◆ The Pennant Race 43
4 ◆ The ­Post-Season 54
5 ◆ Déjà Vu All Over Again 73
6 ◆ Lightning Doesn’t Strike Twice 88
7 ◆ A Team in Transition 100
8 ◆ Turmoil 127
9 ◆ The Pennant Race That Wasn’t 147
10 ◆ The New Manager 156
11 ◆ Kooz: A Dream Realized 189
12 ◆ The Massacre 207
13 ◆ Into the Abyss 218
Epilogue 235
Chapter Notes 243
Bibliography 247
Index 249

Book Reviews & Awards

“From ‘Ya Gotta Believe’ to ‘Ya Gotta Be Kidding Me,’ Jacob Kanarek captures the highs and lows of the New York Mets in the 1970s. The book opens with the unbelievable run from last place to the last game of the World Series in two flips of the calendar and details how an Amazin’ team was ruined. From First to Worst spares no punches: How the Mets traded Tug McGraw, why the team dealt Rusty Staub, and the saga of the ‘Midnight Massacre’ that saw Tom Seaver and Dave Kingman dealt within minutes of each other on the fateful night of June 15, 1977. Every Mets fan should be aware that whatever the team is experiencing now is a mere blip compared to when Seaver, Koosman, Matlack disappeared from Shea Stadium seemingly overnight and rookie manager Joe Torre was left holding the bag. A new epilogue follows the drama through the end of the original ownership of the Paysons and what it was like to be inside ‘Grant’s Tomb.’”—Matthew Silverman, author of Shea Stadium Remembered, Swinging ’73 and 100 Things Mets Fans Should Know and Do Before They Die