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Mets legend Endy Chavez catches a job as the St. Lucie bench coach

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NEW YORK - OCTOBER 19: Endy Chavez #10 of the New York Mets catches a ball hit in the sixth inning hit by Scott Rolen #27 of the St. Louis Cardinals during game seven of the NLCS at Shea Stadium on October 19, 2006 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)
NEW YORK - OCTOBER 19: Endy Chavez #10 of the New York Mets catches a ball hit in the sixth inning hit by Scott Rolen #27 of the St. Louis Cardinals during game seven of the NLCS at Shea Stadium on October 19, 2006 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)
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New York Mets legend Endy Chavez made another catch in 2020, snagging the St. Lucie Mets bench coach gig down in Single-A.

For one brief moment, it felt like the New York Mets were going to the 2006 World Series. With game 7 of the NLCS between the Mets and the St. Louis Cardinals tied 1-1 in the top of the 6th, Oliver Perez faced Scott Rolen with Jim Edmonds on first.

Perez throws a fastball down the middle, which Rolen clobbers to left field. Left fielder Endy Chavez starts running back. Mets play-by-play Gary Cohen frantically yells “Fastball hit in the air to left field, that’s deep, back goes Chávez, back near the wall LEAPING, and he made the catch! He took a home run away from Rolen!”

Chávez, the fourth outfielder who found himself starting most of 2006 because of injuries to Cliff Floyd and Xavier Nady, defied physics to reach back and snow coned Rolen’s home run from behind the wall.

Edmonds, who was on the way to third base, had to turn around and run back to first base. Chávez, from the warning track, is able to get the ball to first basemen Carlos Delgado and double up Edmonds, ending the inning. Delgado gives a fist bump in celebration.

“Endy Chávez saved the day!” Gary Cohen screams excitedly. With the momentum in New York’s favor, there was no way they were going to lose this game. Until they did. With the score remained tied 1-1 in the top the 9th, Aaron Heilman gives up a two-run shot to Yadier Molina, and the Mets are unable to come back.

If the Mets win this game, Endy’s catch would be considered one of the greatest in baseball history. Instead, it is remembered by fans as possibly the greatest catch in franchise history. For fans, it was a legendary moment that anyone watching will remember forever.

Now, 14 years later, Endy Chávez has been named bench coach of the St. Lucie Mets. Chávez spent last season as the bench coach for the Brooklyn Cyclones, his first year coaching. Chávez formally retired after the 2018 season playing for the Somerset Patriots of the independent Atlantic League.

Chávez spent three seasons in Flushing from 2006 to 2008. Endy’s best season came during 2006, as he had an OBP of .348 and wRC+ of 101. He was worth 3.0 fWAR, which was the fourth-highest on the 97-win Mets (yes actually.)

At the beginning of the 2007 season, Endy memorably had a walk-off drag bunt in the bottom of the 12th inning to defeat the Colorado Rockies. It was the most exciting bunt in recent team history. Later in the season, a promotion was held to commemorate Endy’s catch by giving out bobbleheads featuring him scaling the outfield wall.

The Mets heartbreakingly traded Chávez to the Seattle Mariners as part of the package to acquire J.J. Putz before the 2009 season. He played 13 seasons in the majors with the Mets, Royals, Expos, Nationals, Phillies, Mariners, Rangers and Orioles. Chávez hasn’t played in the majors since 2014.

Next. Three Mets known for one defensive play

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It is awesome for fans to see Endy back in the Mets organization. Perhaps, one day, we might see Endy Chávez coaching for the Mets in the Citi Field dugout. He has always had the strength to be there.

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