The 7 Line Army
The 7 Line Army is a group of fans of the New York Mets started in 2012 by Darren Meenan, the founder of The 7 Line, a company that makes Mets-themed apparel. The group is named after the 7 train of the New York City Subway, which stops near Citi Field at Mets–Willets Point. They occupy the Big Apple Reserved section of Citi Field during Mets home games. The 7 Line Army also attends numerous Mets road games, sponsoring outings which attract more than 1,000 fans. This includes annual trips to every major league teams stadium to support the team on the road.
The first outing was the final home game of the 2012 season, September 27. Meenan had the idea to try to host a group outing. He began by purchasing 100 tickets in the Big Apple Reserve section, and then when they sold out, he purchased 100 more, and then 100 more. In the end, he sold 550 tickets to the game. The Mets played the Pittsburgh Pirates and R. A. Dickey earned his 20th win, on his way to winning the 2012 Cy Young Award.
Beginning in 2013, The 7 Line Army filled the 860 seats of the Big Apple Reserve. From there, Meenan began to plan full schedules each year including home and away games. Tickets were sold on The 7 Line website and often sold out quickly.
For each outing 2012 through 2015, ticket prices included a customized T-shirt. The July 14, 2014 outing was a fundraiser for a Met fan undergoing cancer treatments. T-shirts said "Love for Luke." The 2015 Atlanta roadtrip T-shirt said "Met Fans Have More Fun." The T-shirt for the last home game of each season said "Loyal to the Last Out."
In 2016, The 7 Line Army offered a season ticket package for 500 fans. Membership included an authentic jersey. Fans customized jerseys with the name and number of their choice. The remaining tickets for individual games were sold on The 7 Line website and T-shirts which mirrored the jersey design were made available.
On July 3, 2019, Mets general manager Brodie Van Wagenen sat with The 7 Line Army through 4 1/2 innings of a game against the New York Yankees. Though the Mets were playing under .500 and fans had expressed their dissatisfaction with the results of off-season trades, Van Wagenen, wearing the group's orange jersey, was welcomed by the fans and signed many autographs.
The 7 Line Army record
2014 included 7 games at Citi Field and outings to see AT&T Park in San Francisco, Marlins Park in Miami, Citizen's Bank Park in Philadelphia and Yankee Stadium in New York.
2015 included 9 games at Citi Field and outings at Yankee Stadium in New York, PNC Park in Pittsburgh, Turner Stadium in Atlanta, Camden Yards in Baltimore and Coors Field in Denver. When the Mets won the division, The 7 Line Army was present at every home post-season game, including the Worlds Series against the Royals.
2016 included 14 games at Citi Field and outings at Petco Park in SD, Miller Park in Milwaukee, two outings to Nationals Park in Washington, DC, and the 4th annual "Bronx Invasion". In 2016, the Army attended both Subway Series games at Yankee Stadium, instead of just one.
2017 included 14 games at Citi Field and outings at Nationals Park in Washington, DC, Busch Stadium in St. Louis, and Safeco Field in Seattle. They were scheduled to go to Minute Maid Park in Houston, but most did not attend due to Hurricane Harvey. One game on August 6th had the Big Apple Reserved seats taken by a few Dodger fans that were wearing Orel Hershiser and Cody Bellinger shirts. The Mets then lost 8-0.
Mets players have noted the effect The 7 Line Army has when playing on the road. “It almost felt like we were playing at home, the support the fans are giving us at other ballparks, it feels real good," said pitcher Jacob deGrom.
The 7 Line Army has "invaded" the following ballparks:
- Colton, Chris (March 26, 2013). "860 Mets Fans Strong, Opening Day Just The Start For 'The 7 Line Army'". WCBS-TV.
- Ryan, Kevin J. (April 3, 2015). "How a Long-Suffering Mets Fan Built a Business From His Pain". Inc.
- "500 Mets Fans Strong, 'The 7 Line Army' Set To End Season In Style". Retrieved 2017-03-08.
- Inc., Baseball Almanac,. "Box Score of Game played on Thursday, September 27, 2012 at Citi Field". www.baseball-almanac.com. Retrieved 2017-03-08.
- Matthews, Wallace (July 3, 2019). "Mets GM gets a Brodie's-eye view of his team". Yahoo! Sports. Retrieved July 3, 2019.
- "7 Line Army to be out in force at Citi Field". Newsday. Retrieved 2017-03-08.
- Price, Bill (August 19, 2015). "Mets fans invade Camden Yards, 7 Line and comic Jim Breuer make the trip". New York Daily News.
- Bondy, Filip (October 28, 2015). "Move Over, Bleacher Creatures: It's the 7 Line Army's Turn". The New York Times. Retrieved March 5, 2017.
- "7 Line Army to be out in force at Citi Field". Newsday. October 25, 2015. Retrieved March 5, 2017.
- "The 7 Line Army marches to Citi Field". Sports Illustrated. October 13, 2015. Retrieved March 5, 2017. (6:10 length video)