NL NOTEBOOK

Mets Fans Try to Save Apple of Their Eyes

Sunday, August 5, 2007

There's the Big Apple -- and then there's the little apple that pops up at Shea Stadium when the Mets hit a home run.

When the Mets leave Shea Stadium in 2009, they may well get a shiny new apple for their shiny new ballpark, not the dented, faded and rickety home-run emblem beloved by some fans.

"We will have some sort of apple," Mets spokesman Jay Horowitz said. "It is yet to be determined what form the apple will take."

But some fans can't bear parting with the old apple, and have started a Web site and a petition imploring the Mets owners to take the original along when they move to Citi Field.

They don't need "any crazy gimmicks, shiny apples, bright lights," the fans say in their petition. Just a fresh coat of paint for the old apple will do.

They say it reminds them of their youth, popping up for decades after home runs by fan favorites such as Darryl Strawberry and Howard Johnson.

The Mets introduced the 582-pound piece of red plaster with a green leaf in 1980. It emerges from a plywood top hat.

ยท D-BACKS GET BUSY: The NL West-leading Diamondbacks made no move before the trade deadline, but they are making the most of the waiver wire. LHP Joe Kennedy was claimed off waivers from the Athletics yesterday, a day after Arizona grabbed ex-Diamondbacks RHP Byung Hyun Kim from the Marlins and IF Jeff Cirillo from the Twins.

-- From News Services


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