David Wright

SNY Should Be Re-Airing 2000 Season

Opening Day was supposed to be on March 26. We were supposed to see Jacob deGrom outpitch Max Scherzer and out a damper on the Nationals World Series celebration. Due to COVID-19, that’s not happening, at least not yet.

This left SNY without a game to broadcast, they really have no sports to air. Really, they don’t even seem to have a plan on what to do, which is understandable.

Seeing as no one can be quite sure when baseball will be able to return, and with this being the 20th anniversary of the 2000 pennant, SNY should begin airing the 2000 season in its totality.

Each game aired on the same day it was 20 years ago. On March 29, 2020, the Mets should re-air the Japan Series with Mike Hampton taking the ball in his first ever start as a New York Met. The following day, they can air Benny Agbayani‘s Sayonara Slam.

If you recall back to that 2000 season, those games were aired around 5:30 A.M. local time. Now, those games can be aired at a more fan friendly time. Just like we normally see, begin the SNY broadcast around 7:00 P.M., and they can play the games in their entirety.

After the game, in lieu of a more traditional post-game show, they can have a retrospective. Fortunately for the Mets, they already have Todd Zeile as a studio analyst. In addition to Zeile, the Mets also have former Mets players like Edgardo Alfonzo, John Franco, and Al Leiter as team ambassadors.

Perhaps, SNY can get them to give their input of those games and/or their analysis of where the Mets were at that point in the season. Maybe, the team could also get Bobby Valentine and Mike Piazza to do some things for the team, and there is always Gary Cohen and Howie Rose who could find a way to contribute. After all, they have an encyclopedic memory of the team and all of their great seasons.

The team could even have fun with it talking to David Wright about what it was like growing up as a Mets fan and later getting to be teammates with some of these players. They could have Steven Matz, Rick Porcello, and Marcus Stroman give their take of what it was like being a Mets fan in New York at this time, and they could even have some fun discussions about bringing back those black jerseys.

Perhaps, running the 2000 games during their appointed times on the schedule would give fans a reason to tune in and watch Mets baseball. After all, there aren’t any other sports that are currently being aired anywhere. This could give us all a sense of normalcy we are currently striving to find, and it could create a little fun for us all.

Right now, now one knows when baseball can return, and the elephant in the room is if it can return. No one can be quite sure of that. Until that time, SNY can deliver us baseball until we actually have real games to watch.

If You Give A Met a Cookie

If you give a Met a cookie, he’s going to ask for a glass of 2% milk,
When you give him the milk, he is getting ready to hit like Straw,
When the Met is done eating his cookie,
He’ll want another and another and another.

He will go outside to get an Insomnia Cookie.
When he is outside he will see the Home Run Apple,
Seeing the apple will make him want to crush baseballs.

The pitcher will have to pitch a ball,
The outfielders ready with their gloves.
To the pitcher, he’ll look strong like a Polar Bear with his bat.

The pitcher will throw a pitch,
He’ll hit a HOME RUN!

He’ll do a bat flip and dance like a Squirrel to celebrate.

When he starts to dance, the press will want to take his picture.
When he sees his smiling face, he’ll want to text the picture to all of his friends.

When they get the text, they’ll want to know the story.
So he’ll tell them the story of how he scooted around the bases.
He’ll get so excited telling the story, he’ll want to talk to his teammates.

When talking, they’ll talk about how to play the game the Wright way.
They’ll talk about scouting reports, camaraderie, and giving the extra 2% on the field.
Talking about the extra 2% will remind them they’re thirsty.
So, they’ll get a glass of milk.

And chances are . . .
If they gets themselves a glass of milk, they’re going to want a cookie to go with it.

Adapted from Laura Numeroff books, “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie” “If You Give a Moose a Muffin” “If You Give a Dog a Donut” “If You Give a Pig a Pancake

Given Mets History, Don’t Be Optimistic About J.D. Davis’ Shoulder Just Yet

On February 21, 2019, Mets General Manager Brodie Van Wagenen told reporters the MRI on Jed Lowrie‘s knee revealed “no significant damage.” The following day, Lowrie’s injury was described as nothing more than “soreness behind his left knee,” and ultimately, the team gave no estimates for when Lowrie could return to play.

As we know that no significant damage would eventually be classified as a capsule strain. That capsule strain became the Mets know really knowing what was wrong with Lowrie, and by all accounts, the Mets still do not know what is wrong with Lowrie.

All we know at this point is he was limited to just eight pinch hitting attempts in 2019, and he showed up to Spring Training this year wearing a very large brace on his left leg. Realistically speaking, no one knows what, if anything, Lowrie can contribute in 2019. Really, no one knows if Lowrie will ever be able to play again.

Almost a year later, J.D.Yoe Davis dives for a ball at third, is taken out of the game, and he undergoes an MRI. When announcing the results of the MRI, Brodie Van Wagenen announced there was inflammation, a pre-existing labrum tear, and that they need to reassess Davis in a week.

While some circles will paint that as good news, it is hard to calculate it as such, especially with what we knew heading into Van Wagenen’s statements. First and foremost, Mike Puma of the New York Post reported Tigers team doctors examined Davis and determined “there wasn’t labrum or rotator cuff damage.

Davis, himself, was unaware he had an existing torn labrum. The Tigers doctors, without the benefit of an MRI, were unaware of it. In very short order, this went from nothing to a pre-existing injury, inflammation, unable to do baseball activities in a week, beginning rehab, and re-evaluation of the injury in a week or so.

However, Van Wagenen wants us to now believe the Mets were well aware of the injury, and that now, it is not going to be an issue.

While it is very possible that is the case, there is a certain element of Yoenis Cespedes to this. Supposedly, the Mets were always aware he had double heel issues, and yet, they initially expressed disbelief he would need the surgery before finally acquiescing.

No one is going to say Davis needs surgery. By the same token, no one is going to say Davis will be a complete non-factor in 202o like Lowrie and Cespedes were in 2019. However, what we have seen with Lowrie, Cespedes, and even David Wright (spinal stenosis initially ruled mild right hamstring strain), the Mets have a very poor history initially diagnosing significant injuries and setting forth a plan to get the players on the field.

The initial news for Davis isn’t as dire as many feared when he first went down and needed an MRI. There is hope he can come back in a week and be ready to resume baseball activities. However, with this being the Mets, no one should take anything out of this other than we won’t know if Davis can play until we see him active and playing in Queens.

Chris Kreider’s Legacy Is At Stake

On September 29, 2018, David Wright took the field for the last time. He was met with cheers, and as he left, there were tears. That put the cap on a career which was not quite Hall of Fame worthy, but it did not put an end to his legacy.

No, even without a Hall of Fame induction or a World Series, Wright will forever be a beloved member of the New York Mets. One day he will be in the Mets Hall of Fame, and very likely, he will have his number retired. This was all possible because he signed a discounted extension to say a Met for his entire career.

This is something which Chris Kreider should be contemplating at this very moment.

Kreider first came to the Rangers in 2012, and his first ever professional goals were game winners in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Akin to Wright, Kreider’s early career was on very good teams, but as we know the Rangers had a far superior run than the Mets did.

In his first six years, Kreider played for a Rangers team who made the playoffs, and the Rangers had made the Conference Finals in three of four years. In the playoffs, Kreider has found an ability to raise his game and to give the Rangers a key goal scorer.

Even with that, there is some degree where Kreider has been viewed as disappointing. In his eight year career (really seven), he has yet to reach the 30 goal mark, and he has surpassed 50 points just twice. Even with that said, he has been an important and very good player with the Rangers who has provided grit, and he is in the midst of what is the best year of his career.

That coincides with his being a pending free agent putting the Rangers in a position of needing to make a decision on him. While it was easier for the Rangers last year with Mats Zuccarello with the team being far out of the playoff race, this Rangers team is surging and is only six points out of a playoff spot with the second best goal differential among Wild Card contenders.

Kreider is a key part of this team, and given his playoff mettle, he could be the veteran who could help power the Rangers to a surprise run in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Then again, like we saw with Ryan Callahan, the Rangers could flip Kreider at the trade deadline because they can’t agree to a contract extension.

That is what makes this Rangers organization so well run. They have taken a macro look at this team. Their focus is not solely on one year but also the future. Looking at this Rangers team, this is year one of what could be a very look run. After all, they’re knocking at the door of the playoffs with the youngest team in the league.

Hopefully, there is a Stanley Cup coming, and if that Stanley Cup does come, it is a game changer.

One of the reasons Adam Graves is a beloved Ranger and his number hangs from the rafters is because he was a member of that 1994 Rangers team.

Looking at Graves, he had a similar career to what Kreider has had. Kreider’s incident with Carey Price is akin to Graves’ incident with Mario Lemieux. Both played for Rangers team who were Cup contenders, had relatively frustrating careers, and they both rose to become Alternate Captains. Right now, on the ice, the big difference is Graves had that 50 goal season in 1994 (second time in Rangers history), and he helped lead the Rangers to their first Stanley Cup in 54 years.

Between that and his charitable work, Graves is a beloved Ranger. He’s still a Ranger who shows up for team events, and he is there helping young skaters get their gear when they sign up to be Junior Rangers. Adam Graves is a Ranger not only because he played for the team, but also because he won a Cup here.

Even if Graves isn’t in the Hockey Hall of Fame, he has a legacy and a home with the Rangers.

If Kreider stays, that can be his legacy. By signing an extension, he can be a Ranger for his entire career. If he wins a Cup, his number will be retired by the team. That is something which will likely not be present for the next stop in his NHL career.

Naturally, if Kreider signs an extension, it would likely come at a discount. Of course, he could get things he wants in return. He could get a NMC, and given how it is currently vacant, he could push to get himself named Captain. Mostly, he could give himself to be a career Ranger who wins a Stanley Cup and have his number retired.

Mostly, by staying, Kreider gives himself a legacy with an Original 6 Team. For Kreider, that is really what is at stake during these extension talks.

Michael Conforto Making Case To Be Mets Next Captain

Since David Wright has retired, there has been some question over who should be the next captain of the New York Mets, or even if there should ever be another captain. In the event the Mets do ever seek to name a new captain, they have a roster full of homegrown players who could step up and be exactly that leader the next Mets captain needs to be.

The popular choice is Pete Alonso. That choice is inspired, and Alonso has shown himself worthy. In addition to a record setting rookie season, he showed himself to be a great teammate by and through his friendship with Dominic Smith, and he showed true leadership with the 9/11 cleats.

Another very worthy candidate is Michael Conforto.

In his five year career, Conforto has seen it all. He was the phenom how helped the Mets win the 2015 pennant. He was there for the Mets tearing down that roster to build it back up. He has handled his own injury problems, and he has been bounced around the outfield to suit the Mets needs.

He’s been a future superstar, a platoon player, a bust, an All Star, a what could’ve been, and finally, a good baseball player again who is a part of a team who could win the World Series.

More than anyone, Conforto knows what it is like being a Met when times are a good and when times are bad. In some ways, he had a career arc not too different than what we saw with David Wright, albeit on a truncated and less dramatic scale. On that note, Conforto was there when Wright battled back from spinal stenosis, and he was there to learn from him.

Conforto was also there learning from other leaders like Jay Bruce, Michael Cuddyer, and Curtis Granderson. In fact, when Bruce and Granderson were traded away in 2017, it was Conforto who initially had to step up and fill the leadership void, something which became difficult as he dealt with a potentially career ending surgery.

It has become quite clear Conforto learned from people like Bruce, Cuddyer, Granderson, and Wright.

Right now, the biggest issue in baseball has been the sign stealing. That scandal has impacted the Mets as they have already lost a manager in Carlos Beltran before he even managed a game. One of their best pitchers, Marcus Stroman, has been quite vocal in his issues with the Astros sign stealing. While we haven’t seen public statements, there are reports Jacob deGrom and Edwin Diaz are similarly angry.

With J.D. Davis and Jake Marisnick having been part of that 2017 Astros team, that could be very problematic for this Mets clubhouse. That is an even bigger issue with Marisnick doubling off Stroman in a specific game Stroman commented saying the Astros were “Ruining the integrity of the game.”

This is the type of situation which begs for someone to step up and tackle this issue before it is a problem either in the clubhouse or publicly. Right away, Conforto has stepped up and tried to take control of the message:

This is exactly what you need from a captain of your team. You need someone to have the savvy to disspell any notion of internal strife and have the status in the clubhouse to make sure that this will in fact be the case. In that statement, we see while he may not be the captain, Conforto remains a leader in that Mets clubhouse.

Conforto has indicated he loves being a Met, and he would be open to a contract extension. If the Mets step up and make him a Met for life, it would be fitting to also named him the next captain in team history as he is showing he is a leader, knows how to handle everything which has come the Mets way, and ultimately, he is the type of player and person who would make a good captain.

Mets St. Lucie Clubhouse Degrades Minor Leaguers And Deprives Little Leaguers

The $57 million renovations of Clover Park, the Mets Spring Training facility and home to the St. Lucie Mets, are far behind schedule. Worse yet, due to cost overruns, some of plans have been altered.

The 360 degree concourse is gone. Worse yet, the Little League fields have been scrapped.

What did remain was a beautiful state of the art clubhouse for the Mets Major Leaguers. With this doubling as the Mets minor league affiliate, it was a nice touch seeing Tom Seaver in his Jacksonville Suns cap, David Wright in his Capital City Bombers cap, Dwight Gooden and Darryl Strawberry in their Tidewater Tides caps, and Edgardo Alfonzo in his St. Lucie Mets cap.

The irony there is not only was Alfonzo fired as a Mets minor league manager, but the Mets are also not permitting their minor leaguers to use the clubhouse. This means the clubhouse will lie dormant and unused approximately 10 months of the year and throughout the regular season.

Keep in mind, this comes at a time when Major League Baseball is threatening contraction of minor league teams partially because of the supposed inability to maintain adequate facilities. They’re also making the position they need to contract teams to begin paying living wages to their players.

Somehow, that didn’t stop the Mets from (mis)allocating municipal resources mostly towards a little used clubhouse instead of the originally promised Little League fields or other fan amenities. Part of the reason is the Mets were not willing to contribute more than $2 million over and above the $55 million in municipal funds provided.

Of note, the Mets receive 100% of the proceeds for the naming right. This puts in question how much cash outlay the Mets or an affiliate Sterling entity made.

Even if the Mets did provide the money needed for everything promised when the approval for the $55 million was approved, you can still question the wisdom of allocating resources towards a seldom used clubhouse while not allowing minor leaguers to use it. It seems unnecessarily duplicative to have multiple clubhouses.

As reported by Anthony DiComo of MLB.com, the Mets justification for not allowing the minor leaguers use the clubhouse was ” to give minor leaguers a reminder of the status they’re working to earn.”

The position drew much ire and ridicule. Those responding was former Mets pitcher P.J. Conlon, who said, “As if having 6 dudes living in a 2 bedroom apartment isn’t enough of a reminder that you’re in A ball.”

Therein lies the problem. This is just insult added to injury.

The Mets are telling their minor leaguers they don’t deserve a living wage. They then create a great clubhouse, but they won’t let the minor leaguers use it because they need to know they’re lesser people not deserving of better amenities. Better yet, somehow we’re all supposed to believe a nice clubhouse would prevent them from working hard enough to make it to the majors.

In the end, the Mets built a clubhouse which houses Major Leaguers for just two months. That decision came at the expense of giving severely underpaid minor leaguers a little extra comfort, and it came at the expense of Little League fields.

The one thing it didn’t came at the expense of was the Wilpons or the Sterling entities. That expense came from St. Lucie and Clover.

Despite the Mets not having to reach into their pockets, they’re still well behind schedule on the renovations which are not scheduled to be completed until June.

Red Sox Fans, It Could Be Worse, So Much Worse

The Boston Red Sox traded away Mookie Betts, arguably the second best player in baseball, for what amounted to an underwhelming return because the organization believes it needed to get under the luxury tax. This came on the heels of the team needing to fire Alex Cora because he was implicated in the Astros sign stealing scandal.

To that, Mets fans say, “You’re lucky!”

Since the Wilpons took over control of the Mets in 2002, the Red Sox have won four World Series titles to the Mets none. The reason is the Red Sox have competent ownership who will spend and allow their baseball people to run the organization.

The Red Sox got rid of Pedro Martinez towards the end of his career. The Mets helped accelerate that by forcing Pedro to pitch hurt to generate just one last big gate at the end of the 2005 season.

The Red Sox had a similar sell off moving Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford, and Josh Beckett in a blockbuster where they got little more than salary relief from the Dodgers. The Red Sox took advantage of that payroll relief by investing it in the roster and winning the World Series the following year.

Meanwhile, the Mets cannot even afford to reinvest insurance proceeds from Yoenis Cespedes and David Wright. Meanwhile, the Mets get Gonzalez when his career is done because they won’t sign a big free agent, nor would they give Dominic Smith a chance much in the same vein the Red Sox gave players like Betts a chance.

Part of the reason for this is the Mets are run by Jeff Wilpon, who continues to prove he’s inept at running a franchise. That goes from assembling a roster to being the type of person who fires an unwed pregnant woman. He also opted to hire a former agent in Brodie Van Wagenen.

Van Wagenen’s first move was to trade Jarred Kelenic and Justin Dunn to help get his former client Robinson Cano out of Seattle like he wanted. Later in the offseason, he signed his former client Jed Lowrie for $20 million, and so far, he only has eight pinch hitting attempts to show for it.

Van Wagenen was hired over Chaim Bloom, one of the most respected people in the business. Bloom was the guy who helped keep the Rays competitive while having significant financial constraints. This is exactly why Mets fans have little to no sympathy for Red Sox fans.

The Red Sox are run by owners who will do whatever it takes to win, and they continuously hire accomplished baseball people who win games for them. They find ways to move past their mistakes, and even when they make unpopular decisions, they offset it by trusting smart baseball people and spending.

Meanwhile, the Mets are cursed by the incompetent Wilpons who can’t even manage to allow someone to overpay for the Mets by over a billion dollars.

So, yes, Red Sox fans, trading away Mookie Betts sucks. However, you at least have Alex Verdugo, Brusdar Graterol, Chaim Bloom, and owners who will eventually spend. The Mets fans have a young core they love but won’t win because of incompetent ownership.

So, yes, Red Sox fans, it can be worse – MUCH WORSE.

 

Mets Should Be Willing To Eat Contracts For Betts, Bryant But Won’t

Right now, it appears the Los Angeles Dodgers are in the lead for Mookie Betts partially because they appear willing to take on David Price‘s contract as part of the deal. What is interesting about that is Price is still an effective pitcher.

While he may not be quite worth the $64 million for the remaining three years of his contract ($32 million AAV), he is still an effective pitcher. It should be noted it is not without some risk. After all, he did miss the end of the 2019 season due to a left wrist injury.

If not Price, a team could insert themselves into the running by taking on Nathan Eovaldi. He’s an even bigger injury risk, and he is owed $51 million over the next three years.

The key with Betts isn’t just the prospects. It is providing the team with salary relief to help them rebuild. Essentially, the team willing to take on the Red Sox contracts, can get one guaranteed year of Betts as a bonus. This is not too different from how the Los Angeles Dodgers obtained Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford, and Josh Beckett in a deal which not only allowed the Red Sox to get salary relief, but it also helped jump start the Dodgers.

Similar to the Red Sox with Betts, the Chicago Cubs are looking to trade Kris Bryant due to purported budget constraints.

The team willing to take on the contracts of Jason Heyward, Yu Darvish, or even Craig Kimbrel could really improve their chances of obtaining Bryant. For a Mets team who needs a center fielder, will soon face Noah Syndergaard and Steven Matz hitting free agency, and could still use an upgrade in the bullpen, could take on one of those contracts in order to make a push for Bryant.

Keep in mind, the Mets getting Betts or Bryant would be a game changer.

Depending on the trade, obtaining either one of those players would put the Mets from middle of the pack in the Naional League East to one of the best teams in all of baseball. Suddenly, we are not talking about fighting for a Wild Card or having a shot at the division. No, we are talking about the Mets as legitimate World Series contenders.

The issue with the Mets is with the Wilpons in charge money is an even bigger issue than it is in Boston or Chicago. The Mets are the same team who did not reinvest the insurance savings on Yoenis Cespedes‘ or David Wright‘s contracts.

Again, this is where Steve Cohen comes into play. If he was willing to increase the Mets budget now in order to take on contracts which will be in play when he takes over, the Mets could make one of these potential trades. However, based on what we have seen this offseason with the Mets not signing players to multi-year deals, it does not seem the Mets are willing to take on future payroll obligations until the sale is finalized.

That does mute some of the early enthusiasm where people thought Cohen would immediately inject money into the organization. Sadly, the Mets assumed unwillingness to take on a big contract to get a Betts or Bryant is another indication the Wilpons are still in power.

To that end, there could be a sense of relief. After all, Brodie Van Wagenen bungled taking on Robinson Cano‘s contract. Seeing that, you absolutely cannot trust him making a deal of this magnitude. Overall, with Van Wagenen making moves and the budget still restrained, we see things have not yet changed/improved.

Hopefully, that will all change in the not too distant future. Until then, we will see players like Betts and Bryant playing for a team not located in Flushing.

1999 Mets Win One

There wasn’t John Franco blowing an eighth inning lead. Armando Benitez didn’t blow a 10th inning save opportunity. Kenny Rogers didn’t walk Andruw Jones with the bases loaded.

Instead, Frank Clark got Jimmy Garopollo into a grasp only Eli Manning could’ve wrestled out of leading to the drive ending on downs.

A Damien Williams touchdown and Kendall Fuller pick later, and the Chiefs somewhat improbable comeback was accomplished, and they were Super Bowl Champions.

Twenty years later, Mets fans got to finally see Pat Mahomes win a title.

No, it wasn’t with the same team or even the same sport, but Mahomes is a champion. Still, with him wearing his father’s Mets jersey on occasion, as a Mets fan, you couldn’t help from feeling happy for the family.

With the Chiefs winning their first Super Bowl since Super Bowl IV, you also couldn’t help but feel optimism the Mets own drought will soon end.

Like the Chiefs for so many years, the Mets seemed snake bitten facing many brutal losses and horrific moments since their last title.

Rogers walked in Jones. Todd Zeile‘s bounced back and Timo Perez didn’t run it out.

Roberto Alomar completely lost it. On that note, the team traded away Jason Bay too soon and signed him too late. There was also the mishandling of his and Ryan Church‘s concussions.

There were so many mishandled injuries. Pedro Martinez was inexplicably forced to pitch, and the Mets at least tried to prevent Carlos Beltran from getting knee surgery.

Of course, we have Beltran looking at an Adam Wainwright curveball and his teams teams collapse in the ensuing two years leaving everyone but Tom Glavine devastated. That’s nowhere near as bad as the embarrassment leading up to Beltran’s firing.

That cast a shadow over his World Series. Mets fans should be so lucky.

Terry Collins can completely blew the series with bad decisions which backfired all series long. Jeurys Familia‘s quick pitch didn’t fool Alex Gordon, and a year later, he was flat out beat by Conor Gillaspie.

This all meant David Wright, forced to retire too soon from spinal stenosis which robbed him of the Hall of Fame, never won a ring. To a lesser extent, there’s the career Matt Harvey never got to have due to his TOS.

Throw in the Madoff scandal and the Wilpons being the Wilpons, and this franchise seems as snakebitten as they come. That’s how the Chiefs fans once felt.

They don’t feel that way anymore. That changed with Mahomes, who is now a champion.

For the Mets, they have Pete Alonso, Michael Conforto, Jacob deGrom, Jeff McNeil, Brandon Nimmo, Noah Syndergaard, and more. Combine that with the impending sale of the team, and there’s hope.

Maybe, just maybe, 2020 will be the year for the Mets.

It may sound ridiculous, but so is Andy Reid managing the clock well and having terrific game management in the fourth quarter to help the Chiefs win a Super Bowl.

Mets Who Should Be Inducted Into Team Hall Of Fame

The Mets have continued their recent push to honor their past by announcing they will induct Edgardo Alfonzo, Ron Darling, Al Jackson, and Jon Matlack into the Mets Ha of Fame. This is a very good group, and the Mets should be commended for taking this positive step.

That said, the Mets Hall of Fame is not as representative of the best players in team history, and the Mets still have work to do. On that front, here are five people the Mets should look to induct in the ensuing years.

David Wright

Believe it or not, the Mets have yet to induct Wright into their Hall of Fame despite his being their all-time leader in many offensive categories, leading all Mets position players in WAR, and being the fourth Captain in team history.

Obviously, it’s only a matter of time before the Mets induct him, and very likely, it’s also a matter of time before the Mets retire his number five.

Al Leiter

Leiter is arguably the third best left-handed starter in Mets history, and with his 124 ERA+, he’s definitively a top ten starting pitcher in Mets history. Expounding upon his ERA+, it’s third best in team history behind only Tom Seaver and Jacob deGrom among Mets pitchers who have thrown at least 1,000 innings.

More than the numbers, Leiter was instrumental in those late 90s teams. His 1998 season was one of the best seasons a Mets starter ever had. The following year, he had one of the best starts a Mets pitcher ever had.

In the do-or-die Wild Card play-in game, Leiter pitched a two hit shut out against the Reds. Not only did the set the stage for the magical 1999 postseason run, it was very likely the best regular season start a Mets pitcher ever had in a must win game.

Overall, Leiter was a big game pitcher who was one of the best Mets starters ever. Given his impact on those Mets teams, you really cannot adequately tell the story of that era or the Mets as a franchise without mentioning him.

Bobby Valentine

At the moment, Valentine has the third highest winning percentage, the third most wins, and the third most games managed in Mets history. He was the first manager to ever guide the Mets to consecutive postseasons.

Valentine was the perfect manager at the perfect time for the Mets. He always seemed to know the right button to push, including but not limited to his showing up in the dugout with just about the worst disguise you’ve ever seen after he was ejected.

More than the numbers, Valentine played an important role post 9/11. He was visiting firehouses and was at Shea Stadium when it was being used as a staging ground for the relief efforts. He also stood alongside his players in a NYPD cap as his players took the field for the rest of that season wearing the first responder caps.

Gary Cohen

The Mets are nearing a somewhat awkward situation with Cohen. The man who is very likely the best play-by-play announcer in the game has been a Ford C. Frick finalist, and he’s likely going to win the award at some point with his being eligible again in three years.

Effectively speaking, this would mean Cohen is in the Hall of Fame (albeit not formally inducted) but not the Mets Hall of Fame. Keep in mind, Cohen is already in the New York State Baseball Hall of Fame.

Mets fans love Cohen not just for his being part of GKR, but also for his having some of the greatest calls in Mets history. The lifelong Mets fan always seems to be able to take a great moment and elevate it.

With his fellow broadcast partners, Keith Hernandez and now Darling being inducted, he should join them in short order. When he’s being inducted, he should be joined by Howie Rose, who is similarly great and also has some of the best calls in Mets history.

Carlos Beltran

Seeing how Alfonzo was awkwardly fired from the Brooklyn Cyclones and just a few months later is going to be inducted into the Mets Hall of Fame, there is actually precedent for Beltran being inducted after what has recently transpired.

Looking at his Mets career, Beltran is the best center fielder in team history, and you could argue he’s the best outfielder. Certainly, he’s the best free agent signing in team history.

Beltran ranks among the top 5 – 10 in many offensive categories, and he’s the only Mets outfielder with multiple Gold Gloves. In fact, Beltran joins Hernandez and Rey Ordonez as the only Mets to win at least three Gold Gloves.

Beltran was a leader of those Mets teams, and his 2006 season was one of, if not, the best season a Mets positional player ever has. On merit alone, he deserves induction into the Mets Hall of Fame.

Given recent events, it’s likely we won’t see that happen anytime soon. Beltran isn’t the only worthy individual who may not be inducted soon.

In fact, the same could be said about Nelson Doubleday, who is the only Mets owner with a winning record. With his acrimony with the Wilpons, it’s unlikely they move to induct their former business partner.

There are other individuals who could be considered. Johan Santana has thrown the only no-hitter in Mets history, Robin Ventura had the Grand Slam Single, Howard Johnson is the only player with multiple 30/30 seasons, and Curtis Granderson was a leader on the field and just about the best human being to ever don a Mets uniform.

All of this highlights how the Mets have a rich and full history, and it’s great to see them finally dedicated to recognizing and celebrating it.