On a night where the Atlanta Braves were honoring their third baseman and future Hall of Famer, Chipper Jones, the New York Mets decided to crash the party. The Mets would win the first game of the three game series, 3-1.
Jones is set to retire at the end of the season, his 19th in the majors. He has spent his entire career with the Braves, which is a rarity.
On Friday night, fans, Jones’ former manager, Bobby Cox, and Hall of Famer Hank Aaron participated in a tribute to No. 10. Jones would speak to the fans of Turner Field and his teammates, and was given gifts from the Braves organization including a pool table, his clubhouse locker, and a Hawaiian vacation. Aaron would give Jones a third base with the words “Chipper Jones 1993-2012.”
As a fan of Jones, I don’t know what baseball is going to be like without him. I have been watching him for 19 years. Yeah, I really am old.
During the ceremony, Cox gave Jones a final pep talk.
“I want to say to Chipper to keep that rope in his mouth and keep pulling Fredi and his troops to … the World Series,” Cox said.
Jones said the Braves are “one of the best organizations in pro sports.”
Jones came up short on a big night.But after fielding a ground ball for the first out of the game, Jones grounded out four times himself.
Jones’ tribute night brought a sellout crowd of 51,910 to Turner Field. It was the largest crowd of the season and seventh largest in stadium history.
Let’s hope the Braves can win on Saturday and Sunday to give Jones a proper regular season send off.