(CBS Local)– Art Shamsky’s life changed forever after he won a World Series with the New York Mets in 1969.
It’s been 50 years since the Mets beat the Baltimore Orioles to win the title and Shamsky tells the stories of that season and his friendships with his teammates in a new Simon & Schuster book with Erik Sherman called “After The Miracle.” Nobody expected the Mets to win it all that year.
“Even in August, we were nine games back of the Chicago Cubs,” said Shamsky in an interview with CBS Local. “From that point on, we played unbelievable baseball. The thing about that team that is really important is everybody contributed to the success of the team. That is the true legacy where everyone remembers the names. It’s not just the top names that people talk about.”
Shamsky hit .300 and blasted 14 home runs during the 1969 season. The former MLB player says manager Gil Hodges played a key role in leading the team to a championship.
“He was the perfect guy for the team. If he had lived longer, I do believe the Mets would’ve won some more World Series’,” said Shamsky.
In addition to reliving the memories of the 1969 season, Shamsky tells the story of how he and his teammates went to go visit Tom Seaver in California. Shamsky says he’ll remember the trip for the rest of his life.
“We knew Tom Seaver wasn’t traveling to this area anymore, so we decided to take a trip out there,” said Shamsky. “Even that was difficult because we had to coordinate three other guys to go. Once we got there, we didn’t even know if Tom would feel well enough to see us. It was a revelation to spend some time with him. We were able to sit down and reminisce and spend time with Tom at his house and go out to lunch. We talked about how important that season was to us and how important we were to each other.”
“After The Miracle” is available at bookstores now.