After the 9/11 attacks, the city of New York needed something to lift their spirits. And that’s exactly what Mike Piazza did for a brief moment.
Every year between September 11th and September 21st, the famous Mike Piazza home run is always brought up.
With Piazza entering the Hall Of Fame this weekend, people are ranking his best moments.
And his post 9/11 home run should be at the top of the list.
The New York Mets were in a heated pennant race with the rival Atlanta Braves during that time, but, obviously, that was the last thing on anyone’s mind.
In the first sporting event in New York after the terrorist attacks on 9/11, the Mets were to take on the Braves at Shea Stadium.
Before the game, both teams lined up on the foul line as a tribute for the fallen victims took place. The once fierce rivals looked united, until the first pitch.
From recollection and highlights, the game seemed to be a bit awkward from the fans perspective. Nobody really knew how to react, there were no loud cheers or no loud boo’s at the usually loud Shea Stadium.
That is, until Piazza stepped to the plate.
Piazza’s home run gave the Mets a lead they wouldn’t relinquish. This home run was more than just about baseball.
It gave people something to smile and cheer about. Police officers and firemen in the crowd were on their feet cheering just days after they undoubtedly lost friends or even relatives.
That home run helped restore things back to normal (for a moment).
In a career with so many memorable moments and great accomplishments, this one is his most memorable moment.
Who better than Mike Piazza to come up and hit the home run to help beat the Mets biggest rival at the time.
To this day, hearing the Howie Rose call gives me chills. I was only 6 years old at the time, and I don’t think I realized the impact it had until much later.
Mike Piazza was not only my hero, but he was New York’s hero on that night.