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Long IslandLI Life

'69 Mets: Cleon Jones

Cleon Jones, New York Mets outfielder in batting

Cleon Jones, New York Mets outfielder in batting action during 1969 season. (AP Photo) Photo Credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS/

Cleon Jones, 67, on being taken out of a game when manager Gil Hodges walked all the way to leftfield to remove him.

We were getting our tails kicked by Houston. We didn't know what was going on, and we seemed to be liking it. After Johnny Edwards hit a fly ball down the leftfield line and got a double out of it, [Hodges] said, "I'm tired of looking at this."

When he walked past the pitcher's mound, I thought he was going to Buddy [Harrelson, the shortstop]. When he walked past Buddy, I looked around and said, "What's going on behind me?" He walked up to me and said, "I don't like the way you went after that ball." I said, "Gil, look down." My feet were under water and his feet were under water. "You can't move out here."

We'd had a talk in Montreal about me having a bad ankle and I had said that as long as I'm not hurting the ballclub I want to play. Now he said, "It seems like somebody is hurting the ballclub." So I said, "It's time for me to come out." We walked off. It was all fun. Nobody knew what really took place in the outfield but Gil Hodges and myself.

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