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Mets, baseball world react to death of Tom Seaver

Mets pitcher Tom Seaver holds up a No.

Mets pitcher Tom Seaver holds up a No. 25 Mets uniform after winning his 25th victory of the year against the Phillies in Philadelphia on Sept. 27, 1969. Credit: AP

Statements and reactions from current and former Mets, as well as people from around baseball, on the death of Hall of Famer Tom Seaver:

ART SHAMSKY, former Mets teammate

"Words cannot express the sadness I feel with the death of #TomSeaver. Not just a teammate but a true friend. History will show he is one of the greatest pitchers ever I am so glad myself & a few teammates spent time with him in 2017 RIP #41"

JERRY KOOSMAN, former Mets teammate

“A great leader of our team. When he wasn’t pitching he was always there to help the other guys on the staff. He was a true professional.”

ED KRANEPOOL, former Mets teammate

“When he joined us as a rookie, he pitched like a 35-year-old. He had a great head on his shoulders. We became a different a team when he walked into the locker room in 1967.”

RON SWOBODA, former Mets teammate

“As soon as I saw him pitch the first time, I said to myself, ‘He has Hall of Fame stuff.’ He just had to accumulate numbers to get to the Hall.”

JERRY GROTE, former Mets teammate

“Tom Seaver hated to lose. In May of 1969, we had a celebration in the locker room when we reached .500 for the first time. Tom said ‘We want more than .500, we want a championship.’”

MIKE PIAZZA, former Met

“I’ll always treasure our friendship. Tom was always rooting for me to get into the Hall. Two of my fondest memories are walking out of Shea Stadium together after the last game and then when he threw the ceremonial first pitch to me at Citi Field the next year. He was one of a kind.”

DWIGHT GOODEN, former Met

“It’s a sad day for me. One of the first calls I got after I won my Cy Young in 1985 was from Tom. That meant the world to me.”

DAVID WRIGHT, former Met

“Tom and I had a great relationship. I think he saw a little of himself in me, I was homegrown, just like he was. He called me from time to time, but we would never talk about baseball. We would talk about life.”

JACOB deGROM, current Met

“Saddened to hear of the passing of Tom Seaver. Unfortunately, I never got the chance to meet him. Seeing the person he was on and off the field, he is definitely someone I look up to."

GIL HODGES, JR., son of former Mets manager

“The only thing my dad always told me about Tom was nobody prepared for a game like he did. He never left anything to chance.”

KEITH HERNANDEZ, former Mets teammate

"I am deeply saddened of the passing of Tom Seaver. I had the honor of unsuccessfully hitting against him & having as a teammate. He is the greatest Met of all time. No one will ever surpass him that wears the orange & blue. My condolences to Nancy & his family. Tears."

JOHNNY BENCH, former Reds teammate

“For those that knew him, no words are necessary. For those that didn’t, no words are adequate.”

ROB MANFRED, MLB commissioner

“I am deeply saddened by the death of Tom Seaver, one of the greatest pitchers of all-time.  Tom was a gentleman who represented the best of our National Pastime. He was synonymous with the New York Mets and their unforgettable 1969 season.  After their improbable World Series Championship, Tom became a household name to baseball fans – a responsibility he carried out with distinction throughout his life."

TONY CLARK, MLB Players Association executive director

"Tom Seaver will be remembered as a fierce and gifted competitor, a Hall of Fame pitcher whose passion never wavered on or off the field. He was a strong and steady voice on behalf of his fellow players as the Mets' player representative in the early days of the Players Association. We send out sympathies to his family, friends and legion of fans."

FRED WILPON, Mets owner, & JEFF WILPON, Mets COO

"We are devastated to learn of the passing of Mets Legend and Baseball Hall of Famer Tom Seaver. Tom was nicknamed 'The Franchise' and 'Tom Terrific' because of how valuable he truly was to our organization and our loyal fans, as his #41 was the first player number retired by the organization in 1988. He was simply the greatest Mets player of all-time and among the best to ever play the game which culminated with his near unanimous induction into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1992. Beyond the multitude of awards, records, accolades, World Series Championship, All-Star appearances, and just overall brilliance, we will always remember Tom for his passion and devotion to his family, the game of baseball, and his vineyard. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his wife, Nancy, daughters Sarah and Anne and four grandsons, Thomas, William, Henry and Tobin."

Jane Forbes Clark, chairman of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum

“Tom Seaver’s life exemplified greatness in the game, as well as integrity, character, and sportsmanship – the ideals of a Hall of Fame career. As a longtime member of the Hall of Fame Board of Directors, Tom brought dignity and wisdom to this institution that will be deeply missed. His love for baseball history, and for the Hall of Fame, was reinforced in 2014, when he pledged the donation of his personal baseball collection to the Museum. His wonderful legacy will be preserved forever in Cooperstown.”

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