Taijuan Walker takes back seat on new team –to Mr. Met

MLB Baseball

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. (AP)Taijuan Walker is taking a back seat on his new team – to Mr. Met.

A day after the Mets finalized his $23 million, three-year contract, Walker said he was aced out of his preferred jersey number by the rotund mascot with the baseball-shaped head.

”I was 44 growing up, and I finally got it with the Mariners in 2016,” Walker said Tuesday. ”And then I ended up getting traded at the end of the year, and when I got traded to the Diamondbacks, Paul Goldschmidt was No. 44. So I was, OK, I’m never going to get that again.”

So Walker thought: ”What number can wear that not a lot of people in the league have it?”

He chose 99.

”And I think the only way I don’t wear 99 is if I get traded to the Yankees,” he said. ”So I was, OK, 99 is a safe bet and live with that.”

”And then, of course, last year I got traded to Toronto and (Hyun Jin) Ryu wears 99. So, I was like, OK, well, that didn’t work out. So I’m wearing 00. Something different, again.”

”And, of course, this year, Mr. Met is 00. So I just went back to wearing 99.”

The only previous Mets No. 99 was Turk Wendell from 1997-2001, according to Baseball Reference.

More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Now Trending on KRQE.com

Albuquerque Hourly Forecast

Don't Miss

MORE IN DON'T MISS

Photo Galleries

MORE PHOTO GALLERIES

News Resources

MORE NEWS RESOURCES