The New York Mets 50th Anniversary: A Look Back At Casey Stengel

Can’t Anybody Here Play This Game?

Casey Stengel photo © Niels Lauritzen

Writer Jimmy Breslin claimed that “Can’t Anybody Here Play This Game,” was Casey Stengel’s lament during Casey’s first year managing the Mets in 1962. Breslin later admitted he made up the quote. But it would have been an apropos summation of the Mets first season.

Casey Stengel Managing photo © Niels Lauritzen

After winning ten pennants with the Yankees from 1949 – 1960, Stengel was unceremoniously “retired”  by the Yanks brass after losing the 1960 World Series to the Pittsburgh Pirates.

The Mets won 40 games and lost 120 in their inaugural season, setting a new standard in baseball futility.

Casey Stengel Gives Encouragement © Niels Lauritzen

The most famous apocryphal story from Casey’s trying first season concerns Mets first baseman “Marvelous” Marv Throneberry, and even though it has been told numerous times, I’ll repeat it here.

Throneberry hit a triple in a game against the Cubs, but was called out for not touching second base. Casey Stengel ran out to argue the call, but was told by the umpire “Don’t bother arguing Casey, he missed first base, too.”

Casey Stengel & The Amazin’ Mets © Niels Lauritzen

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