A statue of Hall of Fame pitcher Tom Seaver is one of the options being considered by the Mets as a tribute, a source said Sunday.
The team is discussing the options with the Seaver family, the source said. Seaver’s family revealed Thursday that the three-time Cy Young Award winner recently was diagnosed with dementia, a disorder of the mental processes, and has retired from public life.
The family said Seaver, 74, will continue to spend time in the vineyards outside his home in Northern California but will not attend the 50th anniversary of the 1969 world champion Mets June 28-30 at Citi Field. Seaver will be honored during the celebration, with members of his family expected to appear on his behalf.
There is no timetable on when the decision on a tribute will be made, the source said, and whatever is decided likely won’t be ready to be unveiled this season.
The Mets have named several entranceways at Citi Field after club Hall of Famers, including Seaver, Gil Hodges, Casey Stengel and former owner Joan Payson. The Jackie Robinson Rotunda, a shrine to the first African-American to play in the major leagues, has an eight-foot sculpture of Robinson’s No. 42. Seaver’s No. 41 was retired by the Mets, along with Hodges (14), Mike Piazza (31) and Stengel (37).
In 2016, Seaver’s wife, Nancy, criticized the Mets for not erecting a statue of her husband and the others with retired numbers. “It’s ridiculous . . . I’m embarrassed for [the Mets],’’ she told the Daily News.
At the time, Seaver said of a potential statue: “I wouldn’t want people throwing rotten eggs and pigeons [messing] all over me . . . I have a plaque up in Cooperstown that’s across from Walter Johnson and Christy Mathewson.’’
Seaver also said he believed that Hodges, who managed the 1969 Mets, was more deserving of a statue.
Referring to a statue, Matt Merola, Seaver’s agent, said he and Seaver “never talked about those things’’ but said, “I’m sure it would be great.’’
Many ballplayers have been immortalized in statues, but not by the Mets or Yankees (no pro athlete in New York sports has a statue). The Yankees have honored stars with plaques and monuments. The museum inside Yankee Stadium does have a statue of catcher Yogi Berra and Don Larsen to commemorate Larsen’s perfect game in the 1956 World Series.