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Darryl Strawberry says Mets’ organization is ‘an empty place’ for him now

Darryl Strawberry and Doc Gooden in

Darryl Strawberry and Doc Gooden in "Doc & Darryl." Credit: Michael Bonfiglio

Darryl Strawberry expressed lingering bitterness about his relationship with the Mets, particularly chief operating officer Jeff Wilpon, in an interview with WFAN’s Boomer Esiason and Craig Carton Thursday morning.

Carton at one point asked Strawberry, “How long did it take you to reconcile with the Mets?”

Strawberry answered, “How long will it?” indicating there are issues in the present tense.

Strawberry said he participates in some Mets events, including the recent reunion of the 1986 World Series-winning team, for the sake of the fans and Mets employees with whom he remains close, such as public relations man Jay Horwitz.

But, he added, “There’s nothing there for me. It’s an empty place.”

Regarding his relationship with the Wilpons, Strawberry said, “I’ve never had a bad relationship with Fred. I just think that Jeff was very cold to the ’86 Mets and all of us and we take it personal.

“We won and you should celebrate us and celebrate us in a great way. One day maybe they may come around to say, look, we’re not letting anyone wear No. 16 and No. 18 [Dwight Gooden’s and Strawberry’s numbers] for the Mets one day.”

Strawberry spoke as part of a series of interviews in advance of Thursday night’s premiere of an ESPN “30 for 30” documentary entitled “Doc & Darryl” about the off-field troubles of the Mets’ young stars of the mid-1980s.

When asked if Jeff Wilpon has a problem with the ’86 Mets, Strawberry said, “He definitely has. I held the records for a long time. It’s no big deal. That’s on them, that’s not on me. I’m free from all that now.”

What about the fact that Keith Hernandez and Ron Darling are SNY’s long-time Mets analysts? “They pick who they want,” Strawberry said. “Keith and Ronnie were great for us, too, don’t get me wrong. And I love them, just like I love [Gary] Carter and everyone. They did Carter wrong. They did Ray Knight wrong. So, c’mon.”

Asked what ownership’s issues with the ’86 team might be, Strawberry said, “I don’t know. I know Fred loves us. He admires that team. But I don’t what the other reason is with the other guy.”

The Mets declined to comment.

In addition to a weekend honoring the ’86 team in May, the Mets are wearing 1986 throwback uniforms for Sunday home games this season.

Several members of the ’86 Mets work for the organization, including third-base coach Tim Teufel.


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