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Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Mookie and Buckner's work of art

By Ian Begley

After their cross paths in a way that would change baseball history in the fall of 1986, Mookie Wilson and Bill Buckner did not see eachother again for three years.

Wilson, now a coach on the Mets' staff, was in Toronto and Buckner was in Kansas City in 1989 when they ran into eachother during pregame warmups. Wilson was stretching before a game when Buckner stood over him and asked, 'Can you hit me some ground balls?'

The two men have approached their moment in history with a certain amount of levity ever since.

They've signed memorabilia together at card shows and talked freely about the moment in which Buckner allowed Wilson's grounder to go through his legs in the bottom of tenth inning of Game 6 in '86.

"We get along very well," Wilson said on Wednesday.

Which is one of the reasons Wilson and Buckner decided to commission a painting commemorating the moment.

It's easy to see why Wilson would agree to do the painting. His hit, after all, helped the Mets win the 1986 World Series.

But why Buckner?

"He can't run away from it" and can't deny that it happened, Wilson says, so Buckner "wants to show it's not an issue."

Said Buckner: "We have been signing the same photo for the past 25 years. It’s a great shot, but we wanted something new and different. That was a play that has come to define us and this is a beautiful depiction of that play.”

The two men also recently appeared together on an episode of HBO's "Curb Your Enthusiasm."

"I have a great appreciation for the man, knowing the man behind the player," Wilson said. "He's a great human being."

According to the Mets, the original painting will be housed in the team's Hall of Fame and Museum at Citi Field.

It was painted by renowned Toronto sports artist Rob MacDougall. Framed 16 x 20 prints are available for sale at www.theplay86ws.com. Wilson and Buckner have autographed each print, which has been authenticated by Major League Baseball.

For more information on purchasing the artwork, contact Sports Celebrity Marketing S.C.M. Inc. in the United States at 954 642 0707 or via email at Elaine@sportscelebs.com or in Canada at 905 873 8405 or via email at paul@sportscelebs.com.