The jersey worn by Mike Piazza in the first game after the September 11 terrorist attacks was officially presented to its new owners on FOX Business Network’s “Mornings with Maria.”
Piazza’s historic uniform had become the subject of some controversy after it emerged on the auction block in late March. The New York Mets sold the jersey three years ago in a private sale, although the buyer loaned it back to the team to display in the Citi Field museum. When the owner decided to resell it, buyers began lining up to buy the jersey in hopes of keeping it in New York.
“We acknowledge that we made a mistake, and have instituted a new process with internal controls to prevent something like this from happening again in the future,” the Mets said in a statement last week.
SkyBridge Capital founder Anthony Scaramucci, former Goldman Sachs managing director Tony Lauto, 1-800-Flowers (NASDAQ:FLWS) founder Jim McCann and an unnamed fourth business partner teamed up to purchase Piazza’s uniform for $365,000, a record price for a game-worn jersey. McCann’s role was first revealed by the New York Post.
The new owners will loan the jersey on a rotating basis to the National Baseball Hall of Fame, Citi Field and the National September 11 Museum in New York City. The jersey is expected to be in Cooperstown when Piazza is inducted into the Hall of Fame on July 24.
Goldin Auctions CEO Ken Goldin was on hand Monday to officially present the jersey to Scaramucci, a FOX Business Network contributor and the host of “Wall Street Week.”
“There’s a symbolic metaphor in this jersey about New York, New York’s resilience [and] the country’s resilience,” Scaramucci told Maria Bartiromo. “It’s about life. It sends a message to children: Get back in the batter’s box and swing for the fences, no matter what is happening in your world. When you look at this jersey, I want people to see that, and that’s why we’re going to leave it on public display for the rest of our lifetimes and our children’s lifetimes.”
Scaramucci added, “We weren’t going to let this leave New York.”
Piazza famously slugged a two-run home run to give the Mets a 3-2 lead over the Atlanta Braves in the eighth inning of their game on Sept. 21, 2001. The Mets’ dramatic win was the first post-9/11 sporting event in New York.