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Old Time Mets - Cliff Cook

Barry DuchanSunday, March 30, 2008
By Barry Duchan

One of the very first trades the Mets made after the 1962 season began was the one that sent veteran Don Zimmer, who had just broken an 0-for-34 slump, to the Reds for lefty Bob Miller (not to be confused with righty Bob Miller, an original Mets' draft pick) and third baseman Cliff Cook.

The previous season while the Reds were winning the National League pennant, Cliff was the MVP of the AAA American Association, batting .311 with 32 home runs and 119 rbi's. If the league's defending champion had no room for a player who tore up the minor leagues, certainly the fledgling Mets did. Or did they? Cook was pretty awful from the day he arrived. Not only didn't he hit, but he had a bad back that inhibited his ability to play third base, and he wound up being used more in the outfield, where he wasn't much better.

Cliff hit .232 as a part-time player with the '62 Mets, but after hitting .142 in 106 at-bats with the 1963 team, he was sent to AAA Buffalo where he hit .260 and never played in the major leagues again. Cook turned out to be one of many examples that being a dominant player in AAA doesn't always translate to being a good one in the big leagues. It should be noted that 2 days after trading for Cook, the Mets made a deal for another player who had torn up AAA in the past - Marv Throneberry.

Note: More of Barry Duchan's writings can be found on his own Metscentric blog.

About Barry Duchan: I've been following the Mets since 1962. Have to admit I was a Yankee fan as a kid, but I found it to be so much more interesting to see how a young team could build itself up rather than following a team where the season didn't really begin until October. I remember them all - Casey, Marv, ChooChoo, Don Bosch, The Stork, etc. As the years went on, I became more and more of a Mets fan, and a Yankee hater once Steinbrenner and Billy Martin entered the picture.   Read More -->

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Comments (3)

I thought Cliff Cooks ,AAA's numbers were going to be awesome when he became a Met. I seen him as our clean up batter, and on to the W/S.It just didn't happen he left his numbers in AAA and was so weak at the plate once he got to Shea. My high hopes became no hope for Cliffy.

Mike, We've seen this before. One name that comes to mind is bam bam. Wonder what he's up to?

Who is "Bam Bam" ? Do you mean Hensley Meulens ? If so, what does he have to do with the Mets ? Many, many AAA stars never made it to the majors, or failed when they got the chance. But Cliff Cook and Marv Throneberry were both AAA MVP's who the Mets traded for in 1962, and of course, both were total failures as big leaguers.

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