The Mets' Keith Hernandez high-fives Mookie Wilson as he crosses...

The Mets' Keith Hernandez high-fives Mookie Wilson as he crosses the plate after a first-inning home run in the second game of a doubleheader against the St. Louis Cardinals at Shea Stadium on June 21, 1983.  Credit: AP/Ron Frehm

In the aftermath of the Mets’ joyous announcement on Feb. 8 that they were going to hold their first Old-Timers’ Day in 28 years on Aug. 27, one question probably reverberated around the offices at Citi Field: How exactly do you put together an Old-Timers’ Day after not having had one since 1994?

For answers, the Mets turned to the one baseball team in America that knows how to put on an Old-Timers’ Day, having held one almost every year since 1947.

The Yankees. Who were only too happy to help.

It’s not exactly like Macy’s asking Gimbel’s for help (or, for the younger crowd, Google asking Microsoft).

The Mets and Yankees may be rivals on the field — at least for the four Subway Series games they will play in July and August — but share a city and an industry.

So when Mets vice president of alumni media relations Jay Horwitz needed some help, he reached out to Debbie Tymon, the Yankees’ senior vice president of marketing, to ask for advice on the massive logistical challenge that is Old-Timers’ Day.

“The first thing I said was, ‘Good luck,’ ” Tymon said. “The fans love the rivalries, but I think on the business side of the game, sometimes they don’t really always understand the challenges we all face. Sharing this type of information is a wonderful thing. There’s the baseball side of the business and then there’s just business. None of this is confidential or proprietary.”

Said Horwitz: “I was picking her brain. ‘How long are the introductions?’ The logistics of setting the game up. Debbie’s an old friend. She’s been very helpful to me.”

There was more to it than that, of course. Tymon described the process a bit like a large wedding, with “Save the Date” notices followed by invitations and then trying to figure out who is coming from around the country.

Then there are the financial arrangements. Each Old-Timer is given an “honorarium” for attending and also will receive a gift. The Mets settled on a snazzy ring for each participant, meaning the club had to find out the ring sizes for every single one of the 65 Old-Timers who as of this date have committed to attend (many of the names have been publicized, but the Mets have not yet released the complete list).

Second-year owners Steve and Alex Cohen have made honoring Mets history a priority. Already this season, the Mets have unveiled the Tom Seaver statue (which was commissioned under the previous owners and delayed by the pandemic), honored late 1969 Mets manager Gil Hodges for his Hall of Fame induction, and are retiring Keith Hernandez’s No. 17 on July 9.

“Steve and Alex have really been supportive of everything we’ve done,” Horwitz said. “They said, ‘Let’s just do it. Let’s do it the right way.’ And that’s what we’re trying to do.”

The Yankees, who are holding their first Old-Timers’ Day since 2019 on July 30, traditionally have an Old-Timers’ game after the players are introduced.

Former Yankees players including Willie Randolph and Paul O'Neill look on...

Former Yankees players including Willie Randolph and Paul O'Neill look on from the field during the 70th annual Old-Timers' Day at Yankee Stadium on Sunday, June 12, 2016. Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

In 2019 — before the pandemic canceled Old-Timers’ Day in back-to-back years — Mariano Rivera hit an inside-the-park home run, played centerfield and (of course) picked up the save.

This year, the Mets’ Old-Timers are going to play a game. But the Yankees’ Old-Timers are not.

“We are not doing a traditional Old-Timers’ Day this year,” Tymon said.

“We are not going to have a three-inning game. I have several alumni on the injured list — a little hip replacement, a little knee replacement. So when that all came into play, you say to yourself, ‘We still have to bring back Old-Timers’ Day. There’s a clamoring from fans to see the alumni.’ So we’re modifying it and going in a different direction just to move forward this year and then hope to return to our standard event in 2023.”

Tymon said the Yankees are planning on having “well over 30” Old-Timers at their event, with the names to be announced shortly.

The Mets, who are celebrating their 60th anniversary, have a guest list that is nearly twice that. That’s because it’s the first time they’ve held the event in nearly three decades, and also because one of the lessons Tymon taught Horwitz was you have to invite a lot of former players — and a bunch of younger Old-Timers — if you plan to play a game.

For example, 35-year-old former Mets catcher Josh Thole is coming. Thole caught Johan Santana’s no-hitter and was R.A. Dickey’s personal backstop in his Cy Young Award season of 2012, but he’s no one’s idea of a Hall of Famer.

But he’s a catcher. And he’s able-bodied. So Josh Thole will be introduced among the legends on Aug. 27, and then will be asked to do a lot of squatting.

“I said, ‘Josh, you might have to catch for both teams,’ ” Horwitz said. “He said, ‘Do whatever you need me to do.’ You’ve got to get guys who can play. I was on a call with Mike [Piazza] and he said he’s practicing. Mookie [Wilson] said he’s getting in the cage a little bit, too.”

Yankees Old-Timers’ Day games used to be organized by former general manager and manager Gene (Stick) Michael, who Tymon called “the GM of the event.”

Michael passed away in 2017. Since then, former Mets and Yankees player Lee Mazzilli has helped out with the game, and he also offered Horwitz advice about how to stage one for the Mets.

“The Yankees do a phenomenal job with their Old-Timers’ Day,” Mazzilli said. “There’s no reason why the Mets are not going to do a great job with that, too. The most important thing is no one wants to be embarrassed out there. Baseball players or any athletes, they have that gene instilled in them, that competitiveness. You always want to do well whether you’re 30 years old or you’re 80 years old.

“We’ll have that all set up. You’re going to ask a player, ‘Hey, can you go out and play shortstop?’ And they might say, ‘Hey, I have a really bad hip. Can’t go out there.’ And then you say ‘OK, no problem.’ And then you might tell a pitcher, ‘Go out and play second.’ That’s the fun part of it.

“There’s some guys you just run out there and let them throw for one batter so the fans can see them. There’s no organization to it other than letting the fans enjoy seeing the players. You’re going to have a fan that’s 70 years old, 80 years old — they want to see the Art Shamskys.

“Then the younger generations want to see their favorites. That’s the beauty of it. ‘Oh, there he is. There’s that player.’ That’s all it is. There’s no rhyme or reason why someone is playing in what position or whatever. It’s just a good ol’ Sunday afternoon pick-up game that you want to see your favorite player play. Fans are going to see the players that are most recognizable when they were kids. They can tell their grandkids, ‘Hey, that was my favorite player back when.’ And the kid will say, ‘Who’s that?’ and then you’re able to tell that story about that player. That’s the beauty of the game of baseball — to share those memories.”

Tymon also advised Horwitz to prepare for a potentially hot late August day by having folding chairs ready for the more senior Old-Timers, stocking up on ice water and having at least two EMTs on duty in the dugout.

Those and a million other details are all it will take for the Mets to successfully hold their first Old-Timers’ Day in 28 years.

“We haven’t done this since 1994, right?” Horwitz said. “It should be nice. It should be a nice thing.”