The Mets revealed plans on Monday to retire the No. 31 jersey worn by former catcher Mike Piazza before a game against the Rockies on July 30, as part of a weekend-long celebration at Citi Field.
Piazza is due to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame on July 24, joining Tom Seaver as the only players to go in wearing a Mets cap on their plaque. Seaver also is the only other Mets player to have his number retired by the club, as his No. 41 was set aside in 1988. Casey Stengel (No. 37) and Gil Hodges (No. 14) also had theirs retired for their service as a manager.
"It is such a tremendous honor to have my number retired alongside the great Tom Seaver," Piazza said in a statement. "My time as a Met was truly special, and I want to thank Fred, Saul, Jeff and the entire organization for this incredible gesture."
Piazza joined the Mets in May 1998, when the team acquired him from the Marlins. He stayed with New York through 2005, playing in nearly 1,000 games and batting .296 with 220 home runs and 655 RBIs. In his seven full seasons with the Mets, Piazza made the National League All-Star team six times and won four Silver Slugger Awards, helping take the club to the 2000 World Series.
"We are truly thrilled to honor Mike by retiring his number during a weekend-long celebration recognizing his incredible career," Mets COO Jeff Wilpon said in a statement. "His offensive prowess, ability to deliver in the clutch and tireless work ethic helped him become one of the great catchers of all time."
The Mets will honor Piazza during a weekend series against Colorado from July 29-31. On the first night, a Friday, all fans in attendance will receive a Piazza replica jersey. The following evening, the team will hold a number-retirement ceremony on the field, beginning at 6:30 p.m. ET. On Sunday afternoon, the first 15,000 fans through the gates will receive a Piazza bobblehead.