Glad To Have MET Ya: Turning 90, Thomas Recalls Being An Original Met

June 10, 2019 - 6:30 pm
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By Joey Wahler​

In high school, Frank Thomas studied for the priesthood.

"The good Lord gave me the talent," Thomas said. "And I felt that being in baseball, visiting with millions of people, that I could probably have been more helping people than if I would've been a priest."

The slugging outfielder joined the Mets for their inaugural 1962 season, enduring a major league record 120 losses. Yet posting 34 HRs and 94 RBIs, Thomas says they played to win.

"You can't bring back what's already done," he said. "So every day is another day, and you forget about what happened the day before."

In ’62, Thomas belted two homers in three straight games.

"On the fourth day, we had a doubleheader with the Reds," he said. "And I just missed one in the first game, and I hit one in the 14th inning of the second game. So I could've had eight homeruns in five games."

Earlier, Thomas’ 1961 Milwaukee Braves produced the majors' first ever back-to-back-to-back-to back homers.

"Eddie Matthews hit the first one off Jim Maloney in the seventh inning in Cincinnati," Thomas recalled. "Hank Aaron hit the second one off Maloney. They brought in Marshall Bridges to pitch to Joe Adcock, he hit the third one. Guess who hit the fourth one? Me."

Turning 90 this week, since playing Thomas remains fit.

"I don't eat three meals a day," he said. "I don't eat between meals. I did all kind of exercise when I played. Kept myself in pretty good shape. I've only gained 22 pounds."

With his late wife, Dolores, Thomas fathered eight children.

"I love baseball," he said. "Before I got married I told my wife, I says, 'baseball's my first love. You're second.' And I says, 'when I retire, you move up to number-one. If you give me any static, I'll drop you back down to number-two.'"