Mets, Yankees use Queens shop as official sewing machine – NBC New York

The year was 1969.

An astronaut by the name of Neil Armstrong would become the first man to walk on the moon.

Jimi Hendrix, The Who and Janis Joplin would perform at a 3-day festival in a small town called Woodstock.

And the New York Mets would go on to win their first World Series championship long before CitiField was ever a thought. Fast-forward 17 years and the “Miracle Mets” would do it again, securing their second World Series win in 1986.

Russ Gompers, who grew up going to Mets games, was in the stands that day.

“In my mind, I had something to do with that World Series win,” Gompers told NBC New York.

It was the middle of Game 6 and his favorite team was losing to the Red Sox with two outs when he looked up at the sky and said, “Come on, Dad. One more time.”

His father had died of a heart attack a few weeks before that game. “I knew he would want me to go.”

Now, the baseball glove that belonged to his father sits on the wall above his desk inside his office where you’ll find a small embroidery shop in Whitestone, Queens that’s winding up to celebrate its 33rd year.

STITCHES is the official sewing machine for New York’s big leagues. Shop owner Gompers and his dedicated team of professionals are the hands behind the stitching you see on the field.

“The Mets, the Yankess, and the Islanders bring me their uniforms and then we sew on the numbers and the names and now the patches they all wear on the sleeves,” he said.

Hence their motto: Stitched by the pros… for the pros.

“Pete Alonso, Mike Piazza, Johnny Franco, Robert Mitra, Francisco Lindow,” Russ said. “Aaron Judge’s jersey, Gerrit Cole. It’s all got to come through here at some point before it gets on anybody.”

Countless colleges, high schools, and little league teams also use their services. Russ’ team was fulfilling an order for a Sweet 16 when we stopped by the buzzing shop.

Services include silk screening, embroidery, lettering and more. They do uniforms, jackets, shirts, hats — really any kind of apparel one can wear.

“I love what I do because it’s just who I am. I’m a sports guy. I love all sports. I can say that I’m a Mets and a Yankees fan because I do their work.”

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