NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Bill Buckner became the punching bag for Red Sox Nation after botching that little roller up along first in Game 6 of the 1986 World Series.

But believe it or not, now he’s best friends with the man on the better end of that play.

“Bill and I have become very, very close,” Mets fan favorite Mookie Wilson told WIP radio in Philadelphia on Wednesday. “We’re really the best of friends. As good a friend as you can have. … I think I’ve learned more about Bill since both of us have gotten out of the game (than any) ball player I ever played with.”


The Mets, of course, went on to win the World Series in seven games after Wilson’s ground ball bounced through Buckner’s legs to cap off a legendary rally with New York facing elimination in Game 6.

Wilson and Buckner, improbable BFFs, will appear together Saturday for an autograph session at the 94WIP Philly Sports Expo.

“He is a great, great person,” Wilson said. “We enjoy each other’s company and we have a lot in common, a lot more than you would think. And it’s just been great.”

Buckner has since come to grips with the play. And so have Boston fans, thanks in large part to the Red Sox finally ending the Curse of the Bambino in 2004.

“He’s a part of history, and that part of history is never gonna leave,” Wilson said of Buckner. “It’ll be here long after Bill and I are gone from this earth, so we just kind of embrace it.”

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