Tag Archives: MLB

Mets’ Captain David Wright to start in All-Star Game at Citi Field


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

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The ballots are counted and it appears fans around the country made the Wright choice.

Mets third baseman  David Wright will be starting for the National League team in the MLB All-Star game, which will be played at Citi Field on July 16.

The Amazing’s captain outpaced San Francisco Giants Pablo Sandoval, who bested Wright for the starting spot last year. Wright, who fans dubbed “Captain America” during the World Baseball Classic, is currently batting .305, with 13 homeruns. This will be his seventh All-Star game appearance.

All-Star voting ended on July 4 at 11:59 p.m. and the results were announced on July 6 at 6:30 p.m. on a Fox special All-Star game show. The show also revealed that Mets phenom Matt Harvey will make his first appearance in the Mid-Summer Classic. As one of the biggest surprises of the 2013 baseball season, Harvey (7-2, 2.27, 141 strikeouts) is expected to be the starting pitcher for the All-Star game.

The last time the Mets hosted the All-Star game was in 1964, the first season for Shea Stadium. Ron Hunt was the only Met to start that game.

As for Yankees fans, second baseman Robinson Cano will start for the American League and closer Mariano Rivera was also selected to the All-Star team for his final season.

 

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Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com


TODAY’S FORECAST

Wednesday: Overcast in the morning, then mostly cloudy. High of 73. Winds from the NE at 5 to 10 mph shifting to the SE in the afternoon. Wednesday night: Partly cloudy. Low of 59. Winds from the SSE at 5 to 10 mph.

EVENT OF THE DAY: Long Island City to Old Astoria Guided Walking Tour

Official Queens historian Jack Eichenbaum will lead a walk along the East River between the Queensboro and RFK bridges. Begin at the Queensbridge Houses and head for the remnants of Old Astoria. The sights include increasingly oblique views of Manhattan’s Upper East Side from three parks, a former piano factory, a huge power plant, a big box store, the Socrates Sculpture Park, the Isamu Noguchi Museum and ante-bellum mansions. End in Astoria at the Bohemian Hall beer garden. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

MLB seeks to suspend A-Rod, Braun

Major League Baseball will seek to suspend about 20 players connected to the Miami-area clinic at the heart of an ongoing performance-enhancing drug scandal, including Alex Rodriguez and Ryan Braun, possibly within the next few weeks, “Outside the Lines” has learned. Read more: ESPN

Leroy Comrie includes new subway for Queens among list of projects and priorities he would champion as borough president

Talk about a pipe dream. Councilman Leroy Comrie re-launched his bid for borough president this week by dropping a stunning bombshell: he wants a new subway line in Queens. Read more: New York Daily News

Expired milk, muffins served to Queens elementary school students

For weeks, Alex Quinteros complained to his mother about something he noticed wasn’t quite right in the cafeteria at his elementary school in Queens — the fifth-grader from Flushing said one day he saw cafeteria workers give kids expired corn bread, and on another, he said an expired muffin was offered to younger students. Read more: NBC New York

Walcott raked over the coals at City Council budget hearing

New York City Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott met with some angry and hostile comments Tuesday, as he testified at a budget hearing before the City Council Finance and Education committees. Read more: CBS New York

New York attorney general presses smartphone manufacturers to allow consumers to shut down stolen devices

State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is leaning on the largest smartphone makers to protect customers from thieves who steal phones, scrub them clean and sell them on the black market. Read more: New York Daily News

 House panel to address sexual assaults in military

Lawmakers outraged by sexual assaults in the military are moving swiftly to address the problem, tackling legislation that would strip commanders of their authority to overturn convictions in rape and assault cases. Read more: AP

Mets offer fans tickets, other rewards for participating in volunteer projects


| editorial@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/File photo

BY LUKE TABET

The Mets are asking their fans to step up to the plate and help out their community.

The MLB team and volunteer organization New York Cares announced the launch of their new “Mets Volunteer Challenge,” Tuesday.

The program, which ends on September 1, allows fans and concerned New Yorkers to receive game tickets and other Mets-themed rewards for participating and completing volunteer projects.

The rewards are broken down into three tiers:

Home Run- volunteers who complete three to five projects will receive four tickets to a Mets game in September.

Grand Slam- volunteers who complete between six to eight projects will again receive four tickets to a game in September, and will also see their name on the scoreboard in recognition of their service.

Perfect Game- completing at least nine projects will gain volunteers four tickets, scoreboard recognition during the game, and the opportunity to participate in a pre-game ceremony on the field.

Fans interested in volunteering can register for the “Mets Volunteer Challenge” by visiting Mets.com/Volunteer.

 

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Mets players move into Long Island City luxury buildings


| editorial@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Charles Osborn

BY CHARLES OSBORN

LIC has become Citi Field West.

Several members of the New York Mets have been living in Long Island City since the start of the 2013 season, though their neighbors may have no idea.

“I really wouldn’t even know who they were if I ran into them,” said one resident of Center Boulevard.

“I watch a decent amount of sports, and I knew that some of them had places in these towers, but I am not sure I have run into any of them.”

That seems to be a recurring theme throughout the neighborhood.

Luxury condominiums that have been built less than a block from the water have attracted Mets including Mike Baxter, Justin Turner, John Buck and Jonathan Niese.

This is not the first time Mets players have decided to live close to each other.

Several players on the 1986 team — including Darryl Strawberry and Dwight Gooden — lived within a few blocks of each other in Port Washington. They often commuted down Northern Boulevard through parts of northeast Queens.

John Poalson, a resident of the building where several players currently live, thinks the location is ideal because they can walk around and enjoy some privacy.

“Really, it’s the perfect place for them,” he said. “Their commute is simple and can’t take very long, they’re in a neighborhood where probably not a lot of people bother them and they can rent a place for the season and then leave if they want.”

Poalson said he has run into a couple of players and has nothing but good things to say. He added that some of the players may stay past the end of the season.

“I remember seeing them around the building pretty frequently around the time of” Sandy, Poalson said. “They’re definitely nice guys.”

Sandy happened nearly a month after the Mets’ season ended.

 

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Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com


TODAY’S FORECAST

Friday: Partly cloudy with rain showers in the afternoon. High of 52. Winds from the NNW at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 20%. Friday night: Partly cloudy. Low of 37. Winds from the NNW at 5 to 15 mph.

EVENT OF THE DAY: Disco Inferno II

Due to popular demand, Disco Inferno is back on Friday, March 29. Resorts World will boogie down memory lane with a live concert by Tavares, Bonnie Pointer, Cory Daye and Disco Unlimited. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

New York State Assembly passes $141.3 billion budget for 2013-14

The Assembly on Thursday gave final passage to a $141.3 billion state budget. Read more: New York Daily News

Deal reached on paid sick leave in NYC

New York City legislators, labor advocates and business leaders have struck a deal on the hotly contested issue of paid sick leave. Read more:: Fox New York/AP

Mets: Johan might miss 2013 season

Mets starter Johan Santana could miss the entire 2013 because of a re-tear in his left shoulder, General Manager Sandy Alderson announced Thursday during a conference call. Read more: The Queens Courier

Block-watch programs back in vogue as NYPD headcount shrinks

A group of concerned western Queens residents want to make sure the bad old days of crime don’t ever come back. Read more: New York Daily News

Mayors Against Illegal Guns out with new ad featuring Newtown families

Events took place around the nation Thursday as participants demand federal gun safety measures be enacted. Read more: CBS New York

Hundreds rally against proposed cuts to after-school programs

Hundreds of children rallied outside City Hall Thursday to urge Mayor Michael Bloomberg not to go through with cuts to after-school programs. Read more: NY1

North Korea readies rockets after U.S. show of force

North Korea put its missile units on standby on Friday to attack U.S. military bases in South Korea and the Pacific, after the United States flew two nuclear-capable stealth bombers over the Korean peninsula in a rare show of force. Read more: Reuters

 

Mets ranked sixth most valuable team in baseball


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Terence M. Cullen

The Mets are the sixth most valuable team in Major League Baseball according to Forbes, possibly putting to rest concerns the team is underwater on the financial front.

Forbes listed the Amazin’s value at $811 million – a 13-percent increase from last year. The crosstown rival Yankees ranked first with a $2.3 billion worth.

Between the two teams are the L.A. Dodgers, Boston Red Sox, Chicago Cubs and Philadelphia Phillies, respectively. The San Francisco Giants, who played at the Polo Grounds until 1957, ranked just behind the Mets – worth $786 million.

With the average value of a team at about $744 million, the Mets just place above the norm despite financial woes since the Bernie Madoff Ponzi Scheme reportedly put the Mets’ bank account in the red.

Co-owner Fred Wilpon said earlier this year, however, that the team was on its way back up and all money lost nearly five years ago has been remade.

 

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Kids learn from the greats of baseball


| editorial@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Anthony O'Reilly

BY ANTHONY O’REILLY

The next generation of baseball players had the opportunity to be trained by the greats of yesteryear at a Youth Baseball Clinic held at St. Kevin’s School in Flushing.

Yankee greats Roy White, Oscar Gamble and Gamble’s son Sean, a former Phillies player and current coach at Selma University in Alabama, all participated in the event. The youngsters were able to receive tips on batting, pitching and throwing from the former players.

Queens legend Dwight “Doc” Gooden, a part of the 1986 Mets championship team, also came out to the event.

This was the third time the clinic was held, according to the Catholic Youth Organization’s (CYO) baseball director for St. Kevin’s, John Bonnano.

Bonnano, who played Little League himself as a kid, said he started the clinic to allow the youngsters to have a memory about baseball, beyond just playing on the field.

“It’s something for them to remember as they grow up as well as have fun and learn some things,” he said.

 

Bonanno said last year the clinic was held out on Long Island, which caused low attendance because of the commute. This year, the clinic returned to the school’s basketball court.

Bonnano said he’s good friends with Gamble, which allowed him to host the clinic at a minimal cost.

Gamble said he felt it important to attend such clinics because it allowed the next generation of baseball players to get a head start in honing their skills.

“We try to teach a lot of the technique,” he said. “It’s great to get our and help the kids. It’s a lot of fun.”

White said that while he was eager to help the young players develop their skills, he pointed out that it’s hard to teach them everything they need to know at this point of the game.

“You can do some basic things,” he said. “But you can’t start getting too technical with them.”

White also said he wanted to show up in order to give the kids something to remember their baseball playing days by.

“I never had anyone from baseball come in when I was in school,” he said.

Kevin Hynes has two kids at St. Kevin’s, both of whom play baseball. For him, attending the clinic with his kids was common sense.

“They’re very active in the St. Kevin’s community,” he said. “So this was the next logical step.”

Hynes said while he teaches his kids the fundamentals of baseball, he still felt it important to bring them to the clinic and learn from the greats.

“Even though we’re Queens Mets fans, it’s still great for them to show them how to play the game and just have fun.”

Kids and their parents were also given the opportunity to take pictures with and receive autographs from the players. Many parents brought along posters and memorabilia from the players during their heyday, something that White says is a common occurrence at clinics such as these.

“A lot of people will come up to me and say, ‘I used to copy your stance when I was playing,’” said White.

Bonnano said he will try to continue the tradition of the youth clinic every year, hoping that it attracts more and more young baseball hopefuls.

 

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Fan, former player reaction to Piazza and Baseball Hall of Fame vote


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

File photo

Ten days after the world stopped and cried for New York, Mike Piazza made history with a swing of the bat that gave the city hope once again.

The September 21, 2001 homerun Piazza hit was late in the first professional sports game since the September 11 attacks, and gave the Mets the lead in front of thousands of fans, many of whom were first responders.

A power hitter who revived the fan base in the late 1990s and 2000s, Piazza was etched into the baseball history books because of this moment.

But will he have to wait before his plaque makes it into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Piazza did not receive enough votes to make it in to Cooperstown, nor did any other candidate — the first time since 1996 that writers failed to vote someone in.

The 12-time All Star catcher played in the Steroid Era of baseball and was on the same ballot as alleged steroid users Roger Clemens, Barry Bonds and Sammy Sosa. Piazza was never directly linked to using steroids, but many baseball critics were concerned his just playing during the tainted era would hurt his chances.

Piazza batted .296 and hit 220 homeruns in orange and blue between May 1998 to September 2005. He hit his 352nd career dinger in 2004 to surpass Carlton Fisk as the alltime homerun hitter for catchers. If he does make it to the Hall of Fame, Piazza has said he wants to be remembered as a Met and not a Los Angeles Dodger, where he started his career.

Paul LoDuca, who took over as catcher after Piazza left Flushing at the end of 2005, tweeted disappointment that baseball writers hadn’t voted in his colleague.

“Once again: Tell the Voters to strap on the gear for 9 innings and put the numbers up Mike Piazza did,” LoDuca tweeted. “I don’t care if he used rocket fuel.”

LoDuca, who admitted to taking Performance Enhancing Drugs (PEDs) during his career, followed up later by saying an entire generation of baseball should not be scolded for the mistakes of some.

“I took PEDs and I’m not proud of it,” he wrote. “But people that think you can take a shot or a pill and play like the legends on that ballot need help.”

David Adler of Bay Terrace, a 50-year Met fan, was disappointed Piazza did not get enough votes this year, and credited it to accused steriod users taking away votes.

“He [Piazza] should have gotten in,” he said. “A lot of votes went to players using performance enhancing drugs and that, I feel, took votes away for him.”

Adelr and other fans are sure Piazza will one day make it into Cooperstown with an interlocking “NY” on his cap.

“He went to the World Series with the Mets, not as a Dodger,” Adelr said. “You would think that that would count for something.”

— With additional reporting by Anthony O’Reilly

 

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Former Met Mike Piazza, other nominees not voted into Baseball Hall of Fame; first time no inductees since 1996


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

File photo

No one’s going on the wall this year.

The candidates for the Baseball Hall of Fame failed to get the needed 75-percent of votes today to make it into Cooperstown. This was the first time since 1996 that no one was voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

One of those ball players was Mets catcher Mike Piazza, who, according to MLB.com, received 57.8 percent of the vote on his first ballot appearance.

Several sluggers accused of using performance enhancing drugs also appeared on the ballot: Barry Bonds, Sammy Sosa and Mark McGuire.

After the announcement that seems to be stunning the baseball world, Mets COO Jeff Wilpon commented that, “we are optimistic one day soon Mike‘s plaque, with a Mets cap, will be hanging in Cooperstown where it truly belongs.”

 

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Dickey deal finalized; Cy Young Award winner heading to Toronto for prospects


| brennison@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of the New York Mets

It’s official. The New York Mets have finalized a trade with the Toronto Blue Jays that turned Cy Young Award winner R.A. Dickey into a bevy of top prospects.

The Mets amped up efforts to trade the 38-year-old knuckle-baller when talks of a contract extension between Dickey and the team broke down. After the teams agreed upon the players to be swapped, the Blue Jays were given a window to sign Dickey to an extension. Dickey will reportedly receive a two-year extension from the Blue Jays worth $25 million; he has one year remaining on his current deal for $5 million.

In the three years with the Mets, Dickey went 39-28 with a 2.95 ERA and 468 strikeouts in 617 innings.

“Now that it’s official, I want to say that I don’t have the words to express how grateful I am to you for the steadfast support and encouragement I received from all of you. I’ve always felt that there was a connection beyond the uniform. Thank you for making me feel wanted,” Dickey wrote in a series of tweets. “Looking forward to a new chapter with the Jays.”

In exchange for the Cy Young-award winner, the Mets will reportedly receive catching prospect Travis d’Arnaud, pitching prospect Noah Syndergaard, outfield prospect Wuilmer Becerra and catcher John Buck. Catchers Josh Thole and Mike Nickeas will be heading north with Dickey.

The 23-year-old d’Arnaud was 19th on Baseball America’s midseason top 50 prospect list. Syndergaard, 20, who ranked as the Blue Jays number three prospect, projects as a potential top of the rotation starter, though he remains several years away from the majors.

The new Blue Jays will be reuniting with former Met Jose Reyes who was dealt to Toronto from Miami in a mega, 12-player deal earlier this year.

Dickey becomes the fourth Cy Young Award winner to be dealt in the offseason after receiving the prize for the league’s top pitcher, joining David Cone, Pedro Martinez and Roger Clemens.

R.A. Dickey wins NL Cy Young Award


| brennison@queenscourier.com

dickey-390x405

In a lost season, R.A. Dickey was one of the Mets’ few bright spots.

Responsible for 20 of the team’s 74 wins, Dickey took home the National League’s Cy Young award, topping a tough field that included last year’s winner Clayton Kershaw of the Los Angeles Dodgers and Gio Gonzalez of the Washington Nationals.

Dickey, a lightly regarded journeyman who picked up the knuckleball in an effort to prolong his evaporating career, became the first knuckleballer and third Mets player to take home the award honoring the league’s top pitcher. Doc Gooden won the award in 1985 and Tom Seaver was honored three times, 1969, 1973 and 1975.

“To have my name linked to Tom Seaver and Dwight Gooden is quite humbling,” said Dickey, the second-oldest first-time Cy Young winner.

The 38-year-old took 27 of the 32 first place votes.

David Price won the award in the American League.

The knuckleballer led the NL in innings, strikeouts, complete games and shutouts this year. He finished the season with a 20-6 record, a 2.73 ERA and 230 strikeouts.

“I’d like to thank the fans. They stood behind me every time I took the mound. I wouldn’t have won this award without them,” said Dickey, who developed a rapport with the fans over his three years with the team.

The free-spirited Met climbed Mount Kilimanjaro in the offseason to raise money for prostate cancer, and released a memoir detailing sexual abuse suffered as a child.

“R.A. is a great teammate, fierce competitor and even a better human being. No one deserves this award more than him,” Mets manager Terry Collins said.

Following his final home start, and after earning his 20th victory, Dickey spoke about the possibility of winning the award.

“What kid doesn’t grow up wanting to be the best? I’ve always wanted to be the best,” Dickey said.

The journeyman turned Cy Young winner has one year worth $5 million remaining on his contract and has expressed a desire to finish his career in Queens, though no extensions have been finalized as the team is exploring all its options, including trades.

Coming into the year, Dickey collected just 41 wins over his first nine professional seasons. Dickey, who joined the Mets in 2010, did not make the team coming out of spring training that year, instead being sent to the minors. He was recalled in May and won 19 games over the next two years with an ERA just above 3.00 before jumping another level this past season.

“The Pride of Whitestone”: Mike Baxter’s lifelong baseball dream realized in Queens


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

File photo

It was late in the game on June 1 when Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina knocked a fly ball to left field. Johan Santana, the Mets starting ace who was still working his way back after missing the entire previous season, was facing a multi-base hit — what could have been the first of any hits that night.

Mike Baxter headed back to the wall, trying to keep the no-no intact. He caught the ball and bounced into the blue padding at a high speed. A few innings later, Santana would go on to record the team’s first no-hitter in a 50-year history.

Whitestone native Baxter, however, would end up throwing his shoulder out during the catch — giving up his own health for the sake of the team he grew up loving and watching.

“It was bitter sweet,” said dad Ray Baxter, who hasn’t missed a home game his son has played since joining the team. “It was great while it happened but all of a sudden, 10 seconds later, you start to worry: it’s your child out there that’s hurt. He’s not getting up, and you see him walk off the field and they’re holding his arm like he’s got a broken arm.”

A few hours after the game, as Santana went through a number of interviews, teammate Justin Turner got to Twitter and dubbed his friend “The Pride of Whitestone.” The nickname has since stuck.

Baxter, 27, has come full circle in his still-young baseball journey. He grew up playing baseball in the Bayside Little League, and then at Archbishop Molloy High School.

From there he went on to play college ball at Columbia University, but found himself unhappy with the program, his father said.

He found a home, to this day, in Tennessee where he transferred to play and study at Vanderbilt University, and still keeps a home today.

Baxter played under long-time Commodores coach Tim Corbin, who said he could always tell the Queens product would make it into the majors based on his all-around abilities and determination.

The young player, his former coach said, could do a number of things at the plate and was resilient in his time at Vanderbilt. It was these factors, among others, that brought Baxter to the majors, Corbin said.

After spending six years with the San Diego Padres organization, Baxter was released in 2011. Nearly instantly, however, the Mets picked him up — making it a bittersweet phone call home.

“It was a tough phone call,” Ray Baxter said, in reference to his son being released from the Padres. “You’ve got to take a breath.”

Baxter acknowledged the same sort of feeling, but went on to say that putting on the Met jersey for the first time was an unbelievable feeling.

“That was just a great day, it all happened so quickly,” he said. “You could say it was a dream come true.”

He finally returned to the team during a series in San Francisco on July 30. A few nights later, against his first big league team, Baxter would tie a team record by drawing five walks. When he returned for his first night back at Citi Field on August 7, Baxter said he was most proud to be back in front of the fans.

“I love playing in New York,” he said. “When you come back to New York and you get back in front of the fans, some of the greatest in the world in my opinion, it’s always exciting taking the field out here.”

The Whitestone native’s future is still to be written and it is unclear what will come in the next few years. His dad, on the other hand, is certain his son will stay in baseball for as long as humanly possible, even after he hangs up his glove.

“In my heart, I believe Michael is not leaving baseball.”

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com


TODAY’S FORECAST

Monday: Overcast with rain showers. High of 79. Winds from the ESE at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 40%. Monday night: Overcast with rain showers in the evening, then mostly cloudy. Low of 64. Winds less than 5 mph. Chance of rain 20%.

EVENT of the DAY: Movie Night in Astoria Park

Come to Astoria Park tonight for a free screening of “Thunder Soul,” a documentary film that gives the positive message that students will excel if encouraged and that teachers can motivate you for life.  Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

12 injured in Queens fire

Fire officials say 10 firefighters and two residents were injured in a fire at a three-story building in Queens. Read more: NBC New York

Planned hotel sparks concern for Rockaway residents

A planned six-story hotel in Edgemere is raising the hackles of local homeowners who worry it will put the brakes on the neighborhood’s hard-fought revival. Read more: New York Daily News

Abandoned baby found in Qns.

A newborn girl was found abandoned behind a building in a Queens housing project last night, police said. Read more: New York Post 

Over 500 guns bought back by police at Jamaica church

A gun buyback in Jamaica, Queens took more than 500 weapons off the streets on Saturday. Read more: NY1

U.S. Air Force Week underway in New York City

Fighter jet flyovers are planned through Tuesday, to mark Air Force Week 2012. Read more: CBS New York

Two dead following fiery small plane crash in eastern Long Island

A second person has been pronounced dead after a small plane carrying three people crashed in the eastern Long Island town of Shirley on Sunday morning, authorities said. Read more: CBS New York

Melky Cabrera’s bizarre scam to avoid drug suspension attracts attention of federal investigators

Last week, the biggest mystery surrounding the Melky Cabrera steroid suspension was what it would do to the San Francisco Giants’ playoff run. Now the question is whether Cabrera, more than a decade after BALCO, has turned the Giants’ clubhouse into a crime scene. Read more: New York Daily News

 

All-Star Game may be boom for Queens business


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Citi Field

Businesses owners are hoping that the 2013 MLB All-Star Game will hit one over the fence.

As baseball fans everywhere flock to the 84th All-Star Game next year at Citi Field, Queens businesses are prepping for the influx of customers.

“It gives Queens a huge national event. We’re planning to promote ‘the All-Star Game comes to Queens’ not to New York City,” said Rob MacKay, an executive committee member on the Queens Tourism Council, an arm of the Queens Economic Development Corporation (QEDC).

He added, “We’re very excited about it. It can bring an economic boom to the borough.”

Last week at a press conference to officially announce the Mets will host the All-Star celebration in July, 2013 — which includes the Home Run Derby, Fan Fest and the Celebrity All-Star Game — Mayor Michael Bloomberg said the event would draw in more than 175,000 fans and about $192 million to the city.

“It’s a good chance for us to A: bring people to our hotels, and then B: get those tourists to stay in Queens,” MacKay said.

It will be the second time ever the “Midsummer Classic” comes to the Mets, after its 1964 visit for Shea Stadium’s inaugural season.

MacKay hopes that fans stay at hotels in Queens over Manhattan and will then shop and visit restaurants, bars and various significant sites around the borough.

“It’s going to be huge. I’m extraordinarily excited,” said Brain Begos, general manager of McFadden’s bar across from Citi Field, who added he expects to have loads of customers from the events. “It’s great for New York, great for Queens, great for the Mets and great for McFadden’s.”

But there’s a curveball.

Edwin Rodriguez, a market manager at travel agency Expedia for the NYC metro area, researched the All-Star Game four years ago at Yankee Stadium and said the game may not bring as much business as expected.

“Expedia’s numbers show that MLB All-Star Games do not bring in huge amounts of compression for their host cities,” Rodriguez said. “All-Star Games typically don’t have the excitement that the World Series or Super Bowl would bring to a city.”

Rodriguez also said that during the 2008 All-Star Game, Bronx hotels only saw limited economic increases because the borough only had a few hotels, so most fans stayed in Manhattan.

That’s where MacKay said Queens has the upper hand, since there are about 90 hotels throughout the borough.

“We have luxury hotels that are as good as Manhattan, but $150 less,” he said.

MacKay said the Tourism Council has already begun discussing how to create packages for the hotels with various local businesses, such as “Borough Excursions,” to help fans enjoy Queens while they enjoy the baseball festivities.

“July and August are usually rough months for Queens hotels. So it’s coming at a perfect time,” MacKay said. “This is obviously a great opportunity and we’re not going to miss it.”