Being the holder of two of the greatest accomplishments an MLB player can achieve separates Keith Hernandez from the rest of us mortals. That is why the New York Mets, one of the two franchises where he lived his best moments on the field, was kind enough to give him the deference of retiring his number.
Hernandez, 68, shined as a first baseman throughout his 16-year major league career. He made his professional debut in 1974 with the St. Louis Cardinals, with whom he won a World Series in 1982, an MVP in 1979 and two All-Star appearances.
He later migrated to the New York Mets, with whom he again contributed to win one more World Series in 1986 and three more All-Star nominations. With both the Mets and Cardinals, he maintained the tradition for 11 consecutive years of winning the Golden Glove as a first baseman. A true legend.
Keith Hernandez's unexpected confession after his number was retired with the Mets
The number 17 will never again be worn by a player wearing the New York Mets jersey. This is an honor that very few have access to, like Keith Hernandez, who received this tribute from the Metros. At the press conference prior to his trip to Citi Field where the ceremony took place, Hernandez spoke candidly to the media.
“It’s very touching. It’s a good moment. I’m not going to make it, Gare," said Hernandez to his media and broadcasting partner, “You know that. I did my speech this morning. I’m a great procrastinator: I woke up I believe 8 o’clock, 8:30, had coffee. And then I sat down for around an hour, did this speech.”, stated Keith according to New York Post.
Hernandez's emotion, for his almost impromptu speech at the retirement of his number, was again on display as he shared what he felt when he saw New York Mets fans gather to recognize his contribution to the team: “I just drove in right now, and I see all the No. 17 jerseys out there, which was kind of touching and nice".