New York Mets: Top 5 strangest stories and rumors from Flushing
King of the Yips
Although he has one of the all-time great names, the nine-year career of Mackey Sasser is largely forgettable. Sasser amassed 16 home runs, a .267 lifetime batting average and a career WAR of 0.2. But that’s not what got him his own “30 for 30” special on ESPN.
Poor Mackey had an incurable case of the Yips. Somewhere along the line in his baseball career, he just started having a tough time throwing the ball back to the pitcher.
The oddness of this story, which was suggested by a Rising Apple reader on Twitter, is that nobody has quite been able to point to the cause of Sasser’s Yips. It has been claimed that previous injuries to the ankle and heel made it too painful for Sasser to stand up after every pitch, therefore causing him to try to throw awkwardly from the crouch.
However, that doesn’t take into account that Sasser threw out 29 percent of would-be base stealers for the Mets in 1989, 1990 and 1991 (right around the league average at the time). Sports talk radio was flooded with calls from fans offering potential cures, such as hypnosis, but nothing worked.
The strangest article I came across suggested the Yips began for Sasser following his parents’ divorce when he was young. Whatever the cause, the Yips – as well as the fact that he played catcher, first base, third base, and outfield – make Mackey Sasser uniquely suited to play for the Mets.