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Mets first baseman James Loney talks with Kidsday

Mets first baseman James Loney poses with Kidsday

Mets first baseman James Loney poses with Kidsday reporters, from left, Meghan Kalenborn, Jillian Martin and Neeya Shetty at Citi Field. Credit: Newsday / Pat Mullooly

We were beyond excited about everything that was about to happen. We met outside Citi Field to prepare ourselves mentally, and were led inside and to the press conference room by New York Mets intern Kristin Wojcik. This is where Mets manager Terry Collins talks to the press before and after the games. We step up on the stage and pretend to answer questions in front of a microphone and take pictures on the stage and of the various posters around the room.

We all wait there, simultaneously tingling with excitement. Incredibly star-struck, we are led through the hallways to the clubhouse. Waiting in a square of chairs for James Loney, the Mets first baseman, we see other Mets players pass, and kids of Mets players running through halls and into the players’ locker room.

Finally, he’s here! We all nervously ask him our questions that we prepared, him answering them, friendly and naturally. We ask him about making the transition to the Mets, his pregame rituals, whether he has superstitions, why he chose uniform No. 28 and if he was relieved not to have to face the awesome Mets pitchers anymore.

Jillian gets his autograph in her dad’s autograph book that was already filled with many famous names from previous games. We then leave, equally as jittery as we were before, filled with post-interview excitement. To our surprise — pleasant though it was — we are led outside to the stadium. The field is empty and being prepared for the game that was that night, we walk up row by row until we get to the field. And then what could be dubbed the best part of the experience, we step foot onto the dirt. We’re on the field, something that Jillian can now check off her bucket list, and we take what feels like a million photos. But our experience is soon over, we are led back out to the parking lots, and we depart from the best day of our lives, smiles on all our faces.

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