TOMS RIVER – Todd Frazier is moving back to “New York, New York.”
The local sports hero, who makes it a habit to have Frank Sinatra playing when he’s at bat, will be returning to the Mets.
“It’s been real @rangers. I want to thank you guys for everything. I got to meet and play with some great people in Arlington. I will definitely miss them. With that being said, we got some unfinished business in Queens,” he posted on social media.
Frazier was part of the 1998 Little League World Series-winning team in Toms River. He went on to star wherever he played: Toms River High School South, Rutgers University, the Cincinnati Reds, the Chicago White Sox, the New York Yankees and then the New York Mets.
After spending two years with the Mets, he was brought to the Texas Rangers for one year.
Now, it’s back to New York, and back to the Mets.
According to ESPN, the Mets acquired Frazier and catcher Robinson Chirinos from the Rangers. As of press time, the two players traded to the Rangers were not named.
“We’re not playing great baseball right now and we need to boost ourselves,” Mets general manager Brodie Van Wagenen told ESPN. “So hopefully these players can give us that opportunity.”
Frazier hit 39 home runs for the Mets over two seasons in 2018 and 2019. He hit .241 with two homers in 31 games for Texas this year after signing with the Rangers in January, according to ESPN. But he wasn’t sought for just his stats, but his personality.
“He can hit a home run, he can start a game at third base, he can start a game at first base, he can DH,” Van Wagenen said. “It shouldn’t be lost that we want Todd Frazier’s energy, to come in and bring some life, be a guy that can come in and remind people what having fun is all about and someone who has a history with a lot of the players on our team.”
In addition to his baseball wins, fans have supported this hometown boy made good due to positive stories about his behavior off the diamond.
In 2014, he reportedly saved a choking man using the Heimlich maneuver in a Pittsburgh restaurant back when he was with the Cincinnati Reds.
In 2013, the Reds had an honorary batboy named Teddy Kramer, a 30-year-old man with Down syndrome. Before stepping out to the plate, Kramer told Frazier to hit a home run. Frazier obliged, bringing in another runner at the same time. After they came back to the dugout, the video camera caught Frazier lifting Kramer in a hug.
Locally, he’s been known to lend his voice and advocacy for good causes such as the Field of Dreams. This will be a special needs playground and more that will be in Bey Lea Park on North Bay Avenue in Toms River. The plans for this include a walking path with rehabilitative stations, a temperature-controlled pavilion, complimentary snack shack, courts for basketball, bocce and shuffle board, a state of the art all-inclusive playground, quiet corner, and baseball field.