Mets rookie Pete Alonso visited the National September 11 Memorial & Museum on Tuesday to donate the custom cleats and bat he used in New York’s game against the Diamondbacks on Sept. 11.
Alonso surprised his teammates with customized cleats to commemorate the 18th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks.
He initially reached out to MLB for permission to wear “First Responders” hats during the game like the Mets did in 2001 following the attacks, but he was turned down.
The rejection didn’t deter Alonso. He took it upon himself to get shoe sizes, perferred brands and styles from his teammates. He then hired someone to customize each pair and prepared to face any fine from MLB that came his way.
The Mets went on to beat the Diamondbacks that night, 9-0, recording 11 hits.
Alonso, who was joined by Mets COO Jeff Wilpon, said the opportunity to add to the collection “means the world” to him. He was humbled that the museum would allow him to donate “a stinky, old pair of cleats and just a bat.”
“Just being here in New York, I just wanted to show every bit of gratitude I could, not just for the first responders, but for the families as well who were directly impacted,” Alonso said. ”You guys will not be forgotten.”
Alonso is hopeful that his gesture will be the beginning of change within the league to allow teams to recognize 9/11 each year on the field.
The 24-year-old, who now owns the rookie single-season home run record with 53, is the favorite to win National League Rookie of the Year.
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