Rod Gaspar is a man who was in the right place at the right time. Drafted in the 2nd round of the 1967 draft, he spend 2 years working his way through the minor leagues before making it onto the Mets 25 man roster for the magical 1969 season. He appeared in 3 games during the NLCS against the Braves as a defensive replacement and had 2 at bats against the Baltimore Orioles and scored the winning run in Game 4 of the World Series. Traded after the 1970 season to the San Diego Padres, he played most of the rest of his professional career for the Padres AAA Hawaii Islanders, where he was considered a leader on that team. Ironically, his last MLB at bat came against his former Mets club on July 19th 1974 at San Diego Stadium where he took a called 3rd strike against his former Mets teammate at AAA Tidewater in 1970, John Matlack.
In the first part of this 2 part interview, Rod talks about the Mets 1969 season and his memories of that year.
In Part 2, Rod talks about being traded to the Padres and his career with them as well as his time with the AAA Islanders and his life after baseball.
We hope you enjoyed hearing from Rod. Let’s always keep our baseball history close to our hearts.