Mets Rewind Timeline

1963 was a transformational year in the United States. The Beatles released their first album (“Please Please Me”) and Martin Luther King Jr. delivered the “I have a Dream” speech, but the headline of the year was the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on November 22. On the field, the Mets continued to sputter, recording a 51-111 record including a 5-1 loss to the Phillies in the final game at the Polo Grounds.

February 4

New stadium named after Shea
New York City mayor Robert F. Wagner signs a bill which formally changes the name of the team’s new ballpark from "Flushing Meadows Stadium" to "William A. Shea Municipal Stadium.”

March 9

Meet the Mets is introduced
Songwriters Ruth Roberts and Bill Katz introduced the official Met theme song, Meet the Mets, to the public. The tune will be modernized in 1984 adding Long Island, New Jersey, Brooklyn, Queens, Uptown and Down, to the team's East side, West side geographical realm.

April 1

Mets acquire Snider
Former Brooklyn Dodger Duke Snider returns to New York when the Mets purchase him from LA for $40,000. The 36-year old outfielder, who will represent New York in the All-Star game, will be told at the end of the season by Buzzi Bavasi, his former GM, that the Yankees had asked for him to back up Mickey Mantle before he was dealt to the team the across the river.

April 4

"Let's Go Mets" heard at The Polo Grounds
The first reported use of the familiar refrain "Let's Go Mets" is heard at the Polo Grounds in the bottom of the ninth inning during a rout by San Francisco. With the Amazins' trailing by 13 runs and down to their last out with no one on base, the rally cry begins to be chanted some of the 'New Breed', the affectionate name given the fans of the National League expansion team.

April 16, 1963

Snider collects 2,000th career hit
Two weeks after being acquired by the New York Mets, Duke Snider recorded his 2,000th career hit, a single off Jim Maloney. The Mets dropped a 7-4 decision to the Cincinnati Reds at Crosley Field.

April 25

Mets win a Thursday game for first time
In the second year of their existence, the Mets win a game on a Thursday for the first time when they beat Chicago at Wrigley Field, 3-2. In their inaugural season, the expansion team failed to register a victory in the 15 games played on the fifth day of the week.

May 23

Hodges named manager of Senators
Mets first baseman Gil Hodges is immediately named as the manager of the Senators, replacing Mickey Vernon, when the teams complete the deal that sends Jimmy Piersall and a player to be named later to New York. The 33-year old part-time outfielder, who will bat only .194 in 40 games for his new team, will be released in July after drawing the ire of manager Casey Stengel for running the bases backward to celebrate his 100th career home run.

June 19

50,000+ watch first Mayor's Trophy Game
More than 50,000 New York fans pack Yankee Stadium for the first Mayor’s Trophy game between the Mets and Yankees B-team. The Sporting News wrote, The New Breed came out in full force, with banners, bugles, firecrackers and cherry bombs. The Yankees hired 260 extra security guards and ushers. Fans threw firecrackers on the field, leading to more than a dozen were booted from the ballpark, but no arrests were made. After the Mets 6-2 win, more than 5,000 fans overran center field in an effort to pull down the Yankees 1962 World Series banner.

June 23

Piersall hits 100th career HR, runs bases backwards
After taking Phillies Dallas Green deep, Jimmy Piersall runs around the bases in the correct order, but backward, to celebrate his 100th career home run. The Mets' outfielder is released two days later by manager Casey Stengel.

September 14

Cleon Jones makes his MLB debut
Cleon Jones replaced Duke Carmel in the ninth inning of a 4-0 loss to the Houston Colt .45s at the Polo Grounds. Jones served as a defensive replacement in center field and did not make a plate appearance in his first game.

September 18

Mets lose final game at The Polo Grounds
The Mets play their final game at the Polo Grounds. 1,752 fans show up to witness the Mets losing to the Phillies 5-1.

Read about the Mets as we dig deeper into memorable moments in franchise history, including games, player profiles and the record books.