Sportress of Blogitude

Secret Service agent once threatened to rain sniper fire down on Mr. Met


AJ Mass, who spent some time in the costume of beloved New York Mets mascot Mr. Met, alleges in a new book that a secret service agent once threatened sniper fire upon the baseball-headed mascot if he happened to get too close to President Bill Clinton.

If it isn’t hard enough to be a mascot for the Mets in the first place, a very scary experience during one man’s tenure certainly made it that much more difficult. And frightening.

In his new book, “Yes, It’s Hot in Here,” Mass recounts an appearance by then-President Clinton at Shea Stadium in 1997. Clinton was on-hand at Shea on that April 15 day to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Jackie Robinson’s first MLB game.

Mass, in full Mr. Met costume, alleges he caught the eye of one surly Secret Service agent when he couldn’t fit Mr. Met’s large, bulbous head through an on-field metal detector.

Undeterred by the difficulty, Mass writes that he nevertheless intended to approach Clinton.

“The holy grail for all mascots — a photo op and meet-and-greet with a sitting president,” Mass writes, via the New York Daily News.

His hopes were soon dashed by the aforementioned agent, who clearly did not want to deal with a goofy mascot as part of his security responsibilities.

Mass writes that the agent looked directly into the mascot head’s mouth and uttered the following chilling and apparently very serious threat.

’We have snipers all around the stadium, just in case something were to happen,’ he says. ‘Like I said, do whatever it is you normally do. But approach the President, and we go for the kill shot. Are we clear?’

“He pauses for a moment to let the words sink in, and it feels like he isn’t only looking into my eyes, but also into my very soul with his blank, unblinking stare.

“’Approach the President, and we go for the kill shot,’ he repeats. ‘ARE — WE — CLEAR?’”

Yikes. This agent, if Mass’ recollection of the events is accurate, clearly wasn’t fooling around. If it wasn’t hot in Mr. Met’s costume before his experiences on that April day — in a nod to the book’s title — it sure as hell was after that frightening encounter. Sweating bullets may be an apt description of what Mass was doing after those dire words of warning.