Major League Baseball would not let the New York Mets wear NYPD, FDNY and PAPD caps during last night’s game against the Chicago Cubs at Citi Field.
Of course, after the events of September 11, 2001, the Mets donned NYPD, FDNY and PAPD caps during games.
It did not escape the attention of ESPN broadcasters that Mets third baseman David Wright was wearing a FDNY cap in the dugout for an inning.
I am saddened but not surprised that MLB prohibited the Mets from donning the caps. Last month, MLB denied a request from the Washington Nationals to honor the Navy SEALS killed in Afghanistan.
Ironically enough, it was former New York Yankees manager Joe Torre who was the bearer of bad news. Torre, who now serves MLB Commissioner Bud Selig as Executive Vice-President of Baseball Operations, said, “We just felt all the major leagues are honoring the same way with the American flag on the uniform and the cap. This is a uniformity thing.”
If it’s about uniformity then why were the Chicago White Sox permitted to wear green caps during their game Saturday night against the Cleveland Indians in honor of….Half Way to St. Patrick’s Day?
Perhaps what Torre means by uniformity is that MLB doesn’t want to run afoul of its contract with cap manufacturer New Era. The Mets would have faced a heavy fine if they had worn the caps during the game. The fact that MLB and New Era can make green caps for the Chicago White Sox to celebrate “Half Way to St. Patrick’s Day” but can’t make arrangements for the Mets to wear NYPD, FDNY and PAPD caps tells you that their priorities leave much to be desired. Sometimes the almighty dollar gets in the way of love of country.