Greenwich and the Mets
It’s no secret that Greenwich is home to many famous celebrities, including sports figures. Greenwich has many advantages that attract these people. It’s close to New York City. The public and private schools are excellent. People can live in the country, and sail on Long Island Sound. There are a variety of public and private golf courses. Greenwich is a very beautiful community. That’s why it’s so attractive to professional athletes, especially Mets players.
The Mets connection goes deeper. In February 1961, George Weiss – Greenwich resident and a former General Manager of the Yankees – called stockbroker M. Donald Grant, who also lived here. Weiss wanted Grant to organize a new team called the Meadowlarks (predecessor of the Mets). Grant would run the organization as Team President from 1962 to 1966. One of the minority stockholders was Herbert Walker, uncle to George W. Bush and resident of North Street. Walker took young George to many a Mets game.
Mets Who Lived in Greenwich
Mets players who resided in Greenwich include Billy Wagner. He had a summer home in Greenwich for many years. Billy liked to be laid-back, easy-going, unrushed. People didn’t bother him, and left him alone. He was introduced to Greenwich by Jeff Wilpon and Tom Glavine. Glavine was 41-years-old and had lived here since 1990. He won 300-games, and lived here until 2003.
I’m a BIG Red Sox fan. When they lost the World Series in 1986, I was devastated. One of the Mets players was George Foster, who moved to Greenwich in 1982. He coached baseball at Brunswick School, and used to stop in where I worked to talk to one of his ex-players. George never missed an opportunity to tell me how bad this Red Sox player was, or how the Mets had embarrassed my team! It was all in good fun, and I really enjoyed it!
Perhaps the best-known Met to live in Town was Tom Seaver. The Cy Young Award winner moved here in 1970, and stayed here for 25 years. He liked Greenwich because of the high real estate value, proximity to New York City, and lack of state income tax. Tom and his wife Nancy did a lot of charity work here in the town. He lived on Round Hill Road for a while. He played at Greenwich Country Club, and even brought other baseball players along as guests. One of these players was fellow pitcher Craig Swann. Seaver eventually moved to California, where he started his own wine business.
Craig Swann moved to Greenwich in 1980. He served as pitching coach for 8 years at Greenwich High School. Swann also started a physical therapy business to help people with back problems.
Other people associated with the Mets include:
a. Tim Teufel – two-time World Champion, who was born in Greenwich and is an alumnus of St Mary’s School,
b. Lee Mazilli – lived in Greenwich and played for the Mets 1976-1981 and 1986-1988.
c. Bobby Bonilla – played for the Mets from 1992-1994, 1995, 1999b. Lee Mazilli – lived in Greenwich and played for the Mets 1976-1981 and 1986-1988.
d. Ralph Kiner – Hall of Fame slugger and sports commentator
e. Carlos Delgado – first baseman for the Mets from 2006 to 2009.
There have been plenty of other sports celebrities, who have lived in Greenwich: Pat Riley, Pedro Martinez, Buck Williams, Alan Houston, Joel Youngblood, Dorothy Hamil. All enjoy the low-key atmosphere Greenwich provides, and the ability to blend in with the “natives”.
Several years ago, I was driving around Greenwich Point when I spotted a well-know singer sitting on the beach. She was smiling and stretching in a way that made me think she was really enjoying her privacy. Then I thought how wonderful it must be to go outside without the paparazzi bothering you. I think we sometimes forget the value of peace and quiet. The world can be a hectic, noisy and demanding place. Thank God for Greenwich !
Slocum, Bill; Mets Bring It Home: Greenwich Magazine, Moffly Publications; September 2007