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Leiter, New Jersey Hall of Famer, Among Forgotten Group of Mets Not in Mets Hall of Fame

Recently in the news, it was reported former Mets great Al Leiter will be a part of a 20 person class that will be inducted into the New Jersey Hall of Fame.  Of all the people inducted, Leiter will be the only baseball player.

It is interesting Leiter is being inducted into the New Jersey Hall of Fame, but he is not being inducted into the Mets Hall of Fame.  Last year, I made the case for his induction into the Mets Hall of Fame. Rather than regurgitate the full case here, I’ll quickly note he’s in the Top 10 in wins, strikeouts, and ERA+ in what has been a pitching rich Mets history.

As it stands, from that era of Mets baseball, only Mike Piazza and John Franco have been inducted into the Mets Hall of Fame.  As we know, Piazza is a Hall of Famer who has had his number retired by the team.  Franco, the Mets leader in saves, had his best years before Leiter even joined the team.

Behind Piazza and Franco, there are some Mets from those late 90s, early 2000s teams that certainly merit induction.

Edgardo Alfonzo is the best middle infielder in Mets history, and he was a key player on a Mets team that went to consecutive postseasons for the first time in team history.

In three years with the Mets, Robin Ventura won a Gold Glove, hit .260/.360/.468, and he had an all-time great postseason moment with the Grand Slam Single.

You could argue John Olerud had a similar, albeit not as great impact, on the Mets as Keith Hernandez.  He came over in what became a ridiculously lopsided trade, and once he become a Met, the team had taken off.

With Olerud in the fold, the Mets went from a 71 to an 88 win team.  If not for Mel Rojas, that 1998 team probably makes the postseason.  In 1999, Olerud was a key part of a Mets team that won the Wild Card and went to the NLCS.

And speaking of that 1998 team, there is Todd Hundley.  Still to this day, Hundley remains the Mets single season home run leader.

Certainly, you can make arguments against some of these players, but ultimately, the fact the great contributions of Mets players who helped bring the team to consecutive postseasons has been far overlooked by this franchise.  It needs to be remedied, and it can start with Leiter adding Mets Hall of Famer to his New Jersey Hall of Famer resume.

 

10 thoughts on “Leiter, New Jersey Hall of Famer, Among Forgotten Group of Mets Not in Mets Hall of Fame”

  1. On What Basis says:

    He hates the Mets?
    Retired and immediately pleaded with the Yankees for a job
    He never seeks tickets nor stays in contact with x teamates…
    He is a politician type.
    Have you ever heard what Chris Russo and others said about him?

    He even refused his battery mate and could not drive from NJ for Piazza’s Ceremony at Citifield

    SO TELL ME, WHAT OF THE ABOVE YOU ARE AWARE OF?
    what were you aware of about the relationship?
    Were you over 15 when the Subway Series occurred?
    Did you follow Leiter’s stay with the Mets starting w the trade w Miami?

    1. metsdaddy says:

      Leiter does not in any way hate the Mets. You forget that when he retired, he retired as a member of the Yankees, and really, it is natural to make such a request from the team you just played for. More than that, where was the spot on the Mets broadcast available? The Mets were not going to break up what they had in GKR to make room for Leiter.

      As for Piazza, he was there the night Piazza had his number retired. Of course he was there because he and Piazza are good friends. Even better, the Mets fans gave Leiter a well deserved standing ovation.

      As for the Marlins situation, the Mets unfairly dumped on him and blamed him for things after his departure. To this day, it was insane the Mets would blame him and Glavine for the ill-advised Kazmir trade. It doesn’t even matter if they requested it. No one forced the front office to make that dumb trade.

      Leiter was a great Met, and he deserves to be recognized as such.

  2. Gothamist says:

    I rarely saw any athlete with the heart of Al Leiter.
    I was shocked he just disappeared.
    He may have came up w the Yankees but he did not ever have a Victor Zambrano year w the Bombers.
    Well if there is a Zambrano to be had Jeff Coupon will look to force Duquette or anyone to make that trade. Kazmir did break down but much later..

    THIS GUY HAD HIS BIGGEST PAYDAY AT SHEA

    Bring this guy back!

    https://www.baseball-reference.com/players/m/murraed02.shtml

    John Olerud
    Todd Zeille

    let us complete the list:

    Even Rusty Staub

    1. metsdaddy says:

      What does Eddie Murray have to do with anything?

  3. Gothamist says:

    Think about all the Yankee Old Timer games where two teams were filled also w Ken Griffey and Tim Raines…

    Hall of Famers…
    Randy Johnson 2 years
    Phil Niekro 2 years
    Gaylord Perry 1 year
    Raines 3 years
    Ivan Rodriquez 1 year

    then the others

    Griffey
    Gooden
    Strawberry

    etc

    GOT TO START SOMEWHERE

    Fly them in
    Put them and the wives in a nice hotel
    Have a catered event
    Fill up the stadium

    BE NICE,..

    And grow something!

    For there is nothing going on
    and ZERO ATTEMPTS!

    How many years did Rickey Henderson, Tom Glavine, Randy Meyers, Gary Sheffield, Willie Mays…

    COME ON DOWN!!!

  4. Gothamist says:

    Sign Lance Lynn or Alex Cobb?

    The only guy to sign : plus no loss of Intl money and pick #2 who will be 30 years old during the entire 2020 season who had a low HR per nine innings pitching for Colorado

    THE ONLY GUY TO SIGN WAS ????

    TYLER CHATWOOD

    Time to move on for no solid FA mid rotation starter is coming….

    1. Five Tool Ownership says:

      I aint give up $500K in intl bonus pool and a #2 pick for Cobb or Lynn!

      This for a team signing two or more Free Agents.

      Tne Mets did not have Ricketts daddy’s money at the Cubs to sign Tyler Chatwood. A biding war was not going to happen either… Yet no draft pick lost..

      1. metsdaddy says:

        I believe the Mets have already allocated the money meaning both are likely not happening.

  5. Five Tool Ownership says:

    Minsya rescinded many contract offers and the Players Association was pissed after he rescinded two contracts made the same days to two pitchers.

    AL LEITER likes coming back?

    http://www.nytimes.com/2004/12/09/sports/baseball/leiter-looks-back-at-the-mets-and-feels-a-sense-of-betrayal.html

    1. metsdaddy says:

      I didn’t recall that, but it would certainly answer the question about why the animosity.

      Regardless, he deserves to be in the Mets Hall of Fame.

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