Mets Records

Here are recent posts about New York Mets records. Some fan favorites include who hit the most doubles, who has the most saves, and R.A. Dickey Sets Mets Consecutive Scoreless Innings Record.

Who has the Most Balks by a Mets Pitcher?

Ever wonder which Mets pitcher has had the most balks called on him? Who has the most balks in a single Mets season or in Mets franchise history?

A balk is any motion made by the pitcher that might deceive a base runner. Most involve the pitcher pretending to pitch when he has no intention of doing so. The pitcher may flinch while on the rubber, or make a deceptive pickoff attempt, or even just drop the ball once he becomes set.

Most Balks in a Mets Season

Mets PitcherYearBalks
David Cone198810
Sid Fernandez19889
Dwight Gooden
Jerry Koosman
Bob Ojeda
1984
1975
1988
7
Roger Craig
Mike Pelfrey
1963
2009
6
Dwight Gooden
Dwight Gooden
Don Rowe
1988
1989
1963
5

David Cone has the most balks in a Mets season. Cone had 10 balks called on him in 1988. Sid Fernandez was just one behind him that same season with 9 balks. Cone finished 20-3 with a 2.22 ERA in 231.1 innings that year. He finished third in the Cy Young voting.

David  Cone pitching

Notice how many of the single-season balk records are from 1988. That was the year that MLB changed the balk rule. They replaced the part about the pitcher coming to a “complete stop” with “single complete and discernible stop, with both feet on the ground.”

The results of the rule change were a joke. By just the 6th week of the 1988 season, MLB pitchers had set a new record for most balks in a season. Dave Stewart set a new individual record for balks in a season on May 18th.

Related: The Matt Harvey bloody nose game.

Most Balks in Mets History

Mets PitcherCareer Balks
Dwight Gooden32
David Cone23
Ron Darling21
Jerry Koosman20
Sid Fernandez18
Bob Ojeda13
Craig Swan12
Rick Aquilera
Mike Pelfrey
9

Dwight Gooden has the most balks in New York Mets franchise history. Gooden had 32 balks in his 11 years with the Mets. Surprisingly, he had only 1 balk in the 5 years he spent with other teams.

Dwight  Gooden pitching

Gooden’s biggest and maybe his only weakness was holding runners on base. So teams, especially the rival St. Louis Cardinals, were always running whenever they got on base. Doc also played during the tenure of Umpire Bob Davidson. He was nicknamed “Balkin’ Bob” and “Balk-a-Day Bob” for his tendency to liberally invoke baseball’s balk rule.

Related: Who has the most strikeouts for the Mets?

David Cone’s Immaculate Inning

August 30, 1991 Mets pitcher David Cone throws an immaculate inning, striking out three Reds on nine pitches. Cone starts the bottom of the 5th inning and fans Herm Winningham, Randy Myers, and Mariano Duncan.

According to baseball-reference, an immaculate inning is defined as occurring when a pitcher strikes out all three batters he faces in one inning, using the minimum possible number of pitches – nine. The strikeouts can either be of the swinging or the caught looking variety, and there can be foul balls involved.

Immaculate innings were unheard of, back when striking out was considered the worse possible outcome of an at-bat. But they have increased in frequency as strikeouts became more acceptable as just another way of making an out. Especially with the rise of hard-throwing relief pitchers in the 1990s. Who come in for an inning, throwing gas. Immaculate innings, while still unusual, have become more common.

I believe that’s former Met Rusty Staub doing the play-by-play. This is the first year that Cone switched from uniform number 44 to 17, in honor of former teammate Keith Hernandez. Cone would go on to pitch 6 innings, striking out 9 and giving up 2 runs. The Mets won the game 3-2. Cone had been ineffective for much of the second half of the season, leading the Mets to fall out of the division race.

Related: Cone argues, while two runners score.

Only one other Mets pitcher has thrown an immaculate inning. Nolan Ryan was the first, back on April 19, 1968. In the third start of his career, Ryan faced the Dodgers at Shea Stadium. In the top of the third inning, Ryan struck out pitcher Claude Osteen, first baseman Wes Parker, and shortstop Zoilo Versalles. He took just 9 pitches, three for each of them.

The Mets have been victims of an immaculate inning three times. First on June 30, 1962, by Sandy Koufax of the Dodgers striking out Richie Ashburn, Rod Kanehl, and Felix Mantilla. Then on May 11, 1994, by Mel Rojas of the Montreal Expos retiring David Segui, Todd Hundley, and Jeff McKnight. Finally, on May 29, 2013, by Ivan Nova of the Yankees getting Ike Davis, Mike Baxter, and Ruben Tejada.

R.A. Dickey Sets Mets Consecutive Scoreless Innings Record

On June 13, 2012 knuckleball pitcher R.A. Dickey breaks the Mets franchise record for consecutive scoreless innings. Dickey pitches 32 2/3 of consecutive scoreless innings, breaking Jerry Koosman‘s previous record of 31 2/3 innings set in 1973.

Facing the Rays, 32-year-old Dickey not only sets a new Mets record for consecutive scoreless innings, but he also throws a complete-game one-hitter. He finally allows a run in the ninth inning of the 9-1 Mets win. It was Dickey’s 10th win of the year.

“I was in the moment with every pitch. I was able to keep the ball in the strike zone . . . and try to work as quickly as possible. It makes for a fun night. I really enjoyed my craft tonight.”

R.A. Dickey told Newsday

The only run is unearned due to a David Wright throwing error and two passed balls by rookie catcher Mike Nickeas. But even an unearned run breaks the scoreless streak.

Dickey would go on to win the 2012 NL Cy Young award.

Related: Who has the most wild pitches for the Mets?

Since Dickey’s scoreless streak, the closest any Mets pitcher has come is Bartolo Colon. On September 10, 2015, Colon was just 1.2 innings shy of tying the record. He did break the record for most consecutive scoreless innings for a pitcher 42 years of age or older. Colon went 31 IP, passing Cy Young at 27 IP, and Warren Spahn also 27 IP.

“I’m really proud. I surprised myself. I didn’t know at this stage of my career I could do that kind of stuff and perform like that. So I’m really happy.”

Bartolo Colon told MLB

Jacob deGrom had a 27-inning scoreless streak from the end of the 2018 season to the beginning of the 2019 season. It ended on April 9, 2019, against the Twins. The all-time MLB scoreless innings streak belongs to Dodger pitcher Orel Hershiser. In 1988 Hershiser pitched 59 consecutive scoreless innings.

All-Time Best Mets Pinch Hitters

The Mets have been graced with some of the best pinch hitters in baseball history. Mets pinch hitters hold several of the all-time records. While some only played for them a year or two, others came off the bench to pinch-hit for multiple seasons.

In 1974, 29-year-old Ed Kranepool split his playing time between first base, left field, and pinch-hitting off the bench. Kranepool hit .48571 as a pinch hitter that year, the highest batting average in a season by a pinch hitter (minimum 30 at-bats).

At age 37, Rusty Staub already had a successful 18-year career as a starting player before his return to the Mets in 1981. Staub used his keen batting eye and trademark choked-up grip in key at-bats late in the game. From 1981 through 1985, Rusty would pinch hit 316 times for the Mets. He was the best pinch-hitting specialist in the 1980s.

Staub’s pinch-hit streak hits 8

Between June 11 – 26 of 1983, the 39-year-old Rusty Staub had 8 straight pinch hits. On June 26th his one-out single to right field in the ninth inning off of the Phillies’ Ron Reed tied the major league record for most consecutive pinch hits in a season. The appropriately named Dave Philley also did it for Philadelphia in 1958.

During the stretch of games, Staub played first base in one game, right field in two games, and left field in another. But in all of his pinch-hitting appearances, he got a hit. Except for his next to last appearance, when he was hit by a pitch. Since getting hit by a pitch does not count as an official at-bat, the streak continued. During the streak, Staub slashed .571/.609/.810.

“Anybody who gets eight straight pinch-hits has got to be happy. But, like I’ve said before during this streak, it isn’t something that’s going to make me or break me. I’ve just gone up there, been aggressive, and tried to be as good a hitter as I can possibly be.”

Rusty Staub to the Daily News

That same year, Rusty also tied the record for most pinch-hit runs batted in for a season with 25 RBIs. Jerry Lynch of Cincinnati had 25 RBIs in 1961. While Joe Cronin did it for Boston in 1943.

Related: Staub’s incredible ’73 NLCS catches.

Coming over to the Mets for the second time during the 2000 season, Lenny Harris was already a pinch hitter deluxe. The next year with the team, the 36-year-old would set the all-time record for most pinch hits in a career. On Oct. 7, 2001, Harris broke Manny Mota’s all-time record with his 151st pinch-hit. Lenny would go on to play 4 more years, ending with 212 career pinch hits. He also has most pinch-hit at-bats with 804.

Honorable mentions go out to Matt Franco, who set the record for most pinch-hit walks in a season with 20 in 1999. Also to Mike Jacobs, who on August 21, 2005, had the distinction of hitting a pinch-hit home run in his first-ever major league at-bat.

Gooden Breaks Rookie Strikeout Record

It’s September 12, 1984, and Mets pitcher Dwight Gooden collects his 246th strikeout of the season, passing Herb Score‘s rookie strikeout record. Doc gets the milestone in the sixth inning at Shea Stadium, striking out Pirate Marvell Wynne for his 11th K of the game.

In 1984, Dwight Gooden is just 19 years old. He’s got a blazing fastball and hellacious curve. Gooden spent 1983 with the Mets’ Class A team in Lynchburg, Virginia where he struck out 300 batters in just 191 innings. He then got called up for the Triple-A postseason with the Tidewater Tides. Dwight made his first big league start in April 1984 at Houston.

Related: That fight when Gooden charged the mound!

In this record-setting game, Gooden doesn’t strike out any batters in the first inning. He then strikes out two in the second, third, and fourth. He strikes out the side in the fifth inning. Future Mets nemesis, Pirate pitcher John Tudor, strikes out to start the sixth. That ties Gooden for the rookie strikeout record, set by Score in 1955. Then Wynne steps to the plate.

Dwight would go on to strike out two more in the seventh and fan the side again in the eighth. He didn’t get any K’s in the ninth inning. At one point he struck out six straight batters.

In the game, Hubie Brooks hit a two-run homer in the fourth with Keith Hernandez on base after a single, giving the Mets a 2-0 lead. Gooden finished the complete game shutout with 16 strikeouts, no walks, and only 5 hits. He threw 120 pitches, 92 of them strikes. It was his second straight shutout, previously throwing a one-hitter against the Cubs. It was also Gooden’s seventh straight victory.

Related: Who has the most strikeouts for the Mets?

In this same game, in addition to the rookie strikeout record, Gooden broke Nolan Ryan‘s Mets record of 14 strikeouts by a rookie in a game, set in 1969. He also broke Tom Seaver‘s one-season record of 13 games with 10 or more strikeouts, set in 1971.

“Sometimes you think about it. You think about it going home, or lying in bed before falling asleep. You think, ‘Am I dreaming?'”

Gooden told the New York Times

In 1984 Dwight Gooden won the Rookie of the Year, with a 24-4 record and 276 strikeouts, still the rookie record, in 218 innings. The next year he won the NL Cy Young Award.

Who Grounded into the Most Double Plays on the Mets?

With one swing of the bat, a player can be a hero or hear the fan’s boos. Game momentum changes when a batter grounds into a double play (GIDP). Which Mets player has been a rally killer most often? Who grounded into the most double plays on the Mets?

Most Grounded into Double Plays in a Mets Season

Mets PlayerYearGIDP
Mike Piazza199927
Cleon Jones
Mike Piazza
1970
2002
26
Steve Henderson
Eddie Murray
1978
1993
24
Frank Thomas196323
John Olerud
Joe Torre
1999
1975
22

Mike Piazza grounded into the most double plays in a Mets season. In 1999 Piazza grounded into 27 double plays which also led the National League. In 593 plate appearances, the Mets catcher hit .303 with 40 home runs and 124 RBIs.

Mike  Piazza hitting

An interesting fact about Joe Torre. In 1975 when he hit into 22 double plays, there was one game that Torre grounded into 4 double plays! On July 21st against Houston, he went 0-4 in a 6-2 Mets loss. The Mets second baseman, Felix Millian, went 4-4 batting ahead of Torre in the lineup. After the game, Torre laughingly blamed Millian. Saying if Felix hadn’t gotten on base so much he wouldn’t have grounded into the 4 double plays!

Related: All of the Mets triple plays.

Most Grounded into Double Plays in Mets History

Mets PlayerCareer GIDP
David Wright152
Ed Kranepool138
Mike Piazza132
Jerry Grote121
Cleon Jones107
Rey Ordonez89
Daniel Murphy86
Rusty Staub82
John Stearns80
Keith Hernandez
Felix Millian
72

David Wright grounded into the most double plays in New York Mets franchise history. Wright hit into 152 double plays in his 14-year career with the Mets. It’s not a surprise since Wright had the most at-bats in Mets history and batted third or fourth most of his career.

David  Wright batting

Related: David Wright’s net worth is a surprise.

Most of the names on the list are not surprising. They’re either long-time Mets or catchers, who are notoriously slow runners. Daniel Murphy and Rey Ordonez are exceptions. But if you think about it, both were hackers – always swinging. Also, there were usually runners on base when they came up to bat.

All of the Mets Triple Plays

Have you ever seen a Mets triple play? Ever wonder how many Mets triple plays there are? As you might imagine, they are very rare. To make three outs during one continuous play requires at least two runners already on base, no outs, and a batted ball.

Let’s get the pain out of the way first. The Mets have hit into 10 triple plays in franchise history.

Mets Hit into a Triple Play History

DateOpponentPlayBatter
September 30, 1962Cubs4-3-6Joe Pignatano
August 15, 1964Phillies1-6-3Bobby Klaus
May 2, 1967Giants1-6-3Ken Boyer
August 15, 1967Phillies5-4-3Phil Linz
July 16, 1971Astros6-3-5Cleon Jones
April 21, 1987Pirates4-3-6-2Wally Backman
May 11, 1993Cardinals4-6-3-6Todd Hundley
May 15, 1999Phillies6-6-4Mike Piazza
August 23, 2009Phillies4-4-4Jeff Francoeur
June 10, 2010Padres5-4-3Ruben Tejada

The August 23, 2009 unassisted triple play that Jeff Francoeur hit into is very memorable. It was the bottom of the ninth. The Mets were trailing 9-7, having already scored 1 run in the inning. They have runners on first and second. Francoeur hits a line drive up the middle, only to have the second baseman catch it, step on the bag and tag the runner from first. A bottom of the ninth “walk off” unassisted triple play!

Perhaps even worse, from a personal perspective, is the September 30, 1962, triple play. It was the last game of the Mets inaugural season. They had already lost 119 games. In the eighth inning, Joe Pignatano popped into a 4-3-6 triple play in what would be his last MLB appearance. Incredibly, it was also the last game for Sammy Drake and Richie Ashburn, the two runners who were tagged out. Pignatano is the only player to end his career by hitting into a triple play.

Related: Who has the most losses for the Mets?

Now for the fun stuff! The Mets have turned 11 triple plays in franchise history.

Mets Turn a Triple Play History

DateOpponentPlayFielders
May 30, 1962Dodgers6-4-3Elio Chacon,
Charlie Neal,
Gil Hodges
May 31, 1964Giants6-6-3Roy McMillan,
Ed Kranepool
April 15, 1965Astros9-2-6Johnny Lewis,
Chris Cannizzaro,
Roy McMillan
September 28, 1966Cubs5-4-3Eddie Bressoud,
Chuck Hiller,
Jim Hickman
August 3, 1982Cubs6-4-3Bob Bailor,
Wally Backman,
Dave Kingman
September 29, 1982Cubs4-4-3Brian Giles,
Rusty Staub
June 6,1989Cubs3-6-3Dave Magadan,
Kevin Elster,
Dave Magadan
August 5, 1998Giants3-6-3-2John Olerud,
Rey Ordonez,
John Olerud,
Todd Pratt
May 17, 2002Padres5-4-3Edgardo Alfonzo,
Roberto Alomar,
Mo Vaughn
May 19, 2010Nationals8-2-6-3Angel Pagan,
Henry Blanco,
Jose Reyes,
Ike Davis
August 24, 2014Dodgers5-4-3-2Eric Campbell,
Daniel Murphy,
Lucas Duda,
Travis d’Arnaud

The last Mets triple play involves Bartolo Colon making his first start since his mother passed away. In the sixth inning, Matt Kemp hits a ground ball to third baseman Eric Campbell, playing because David Wright left with a sore neck. Campbell fires the ball to second baseman Murphy, who then makes the toss to first baseman Duda for a 5-4-3 double play. But Yasiel Puig never stops running, perhaps forgetting how many outs there are, and tries to score. Duda throws the ball to d’Arnaud who easily tags out Puig for the third out.

Related: Who has the most wins for the Mets?

Who has the Most At-Bats for the Mets?

Ever wonder who has the most at-bats for the Mets? Is it some long-time Mets player like Ed Kranepool? Or is it one of the fan favorites, leadoff batters like Mookie Wilson or Jose Reyes?

According to MLB.com, an official at-bat comes when a batter reaches base via a fielder’s choice, hit or an error (not including catcher’s interference) or when a batter is put out on a non-sacrifice. Walks don’t count as at-bats.

Players batting at the top of the order will get more at-bats than players who hit toward the bottom. Old school thinking was to put your fastest runners batting leadoff. Hopefully, they were also high on-base percentage guys. They were called “table setters”. But the new thinking is to just get your best hitters the most at-bats.

First, let’s see who leads in at-bats for the Mets in a single season.

Most At-Bats in a Mets Season

Mets PlayerYearAt-Bats
Jose Reyes2005696
Jose Reyes2008688
Lance Johnson1996682
Jose Reyes2007681
Felix Millan1975676
Daniel Murphy2013658
Jose Reyes2006647
Mookie Wilson1982639
Felix Millan
Mookie Wilson
1973
1983
638

Jose Reyes has the most at-bats in a Mets season with 696 in 2005. Reyes led the National League that year in both at-bats and plate appearances (733). Jose also led the NL with 17 triples and 60 stolen bases. The Mets shortstop averaged .273 while batting leadoff in almost every game.

Jose  Reyes sliding

Reyes appears 4 times in the single-season Mets leader board for most at-bats. That’s not really a great stat since it would’ve been better if Jose had gotten more walks. It’s the same reason that Daniel Murphy is on the list. Murph was swinging! You might think that Reyes would easily also hold the all-time Mets at-bat record. But you’d be wrong.

Related: Who has the most hits for the Mets?

Most At-Bats in Mets History

Mets PlayerCareer At-Bats
David Wright5998
Jose Reyes5437
Ed Kranepool5436
Bud Harrelson4390
Cleon Jones4223
Mookie Wilson4027
Howard Johnson3968
Darryl Strawberry3903
Edgardo Alfonzo3897
Jerry Grote3881

David Wright has the most at-bats in New York Mets franchise history. Wright had 5998 at-bats over his 14 year Mets career. Wright easily tops Jose Reyes, who had 5437 at-bats during his 12 years on the Mets. First baseman Ed Kranepool is just one behind with 5436 at-bats in his 18 years with the team.

David  Wright batting

Wright sits near or at the top of most Mets singles, doubles and home runs.

Who Hit the Most Grand Slams for the Mets?

Nothing lifts a team’s chances of winning a game and crushes the opponents’ hopes like hitting a grand slam home run. Four runs cross the plate with one swing. While the Mets have been a victim many times, today let’s see who has hit the most grand slams for the Mets.

Mike Piazza has hit the most grand slams in New York Mets franchise history. Piazza hit 6 grand slams during his eight years with the Mets. Over his entire 16 years, the Hall of Fame catcher hit 14 grand slams. He hit 8 grand slams while a member of the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Mike  Piazza hitting

Mike Piazza Mets Grand Slams

DateTeamPitcher
1998-08-22ARIAndy Benes
2000-05-14FLABrad Penny
200006-09NYYRoger Clemens
2000-07-18TORChris Carpenter
2002-05-17SDPJason Boyd
2002-09-09PHIJose Santiago

Related: Who hit the most home runs in a Mets game?

The one against Clemens is notable because the next month Piazza was hit in the head by a Roger Clemen’s fastball. Mike faced Clemens 25 times in his career and had 8 hits, including 4 home runs and 10 RBIs. His slash line was .364/.440/.955 against Roger.

Who has the Lowest Walks Per 9 Innings for the Mets?

Today pitching is all about power. But control is important too. Not allowing a batter to reach base via a walk can reduce the likelihood of a big inning. Especially since home runs are being hit at historic rates.

According to FanGraphs, walks Per 9 Innings (BB/9) is a rate statistic that measures how many walks a pitcher averages over nine innings. Of course, not many pitchers throw nine innings all at once anymore, but this is a way of standardizing the stat so it’s on an easy-to-understand scale. The formula is simple enough: BB/9 = Walks*9 / Innings Pitched.

FanGraphs considers a BB/9 less than 1.9 as great, less than 2.5 above average, and less than 2.9 as average. The modern (since 1901) single-season record belongs to Carlos Silva, who in 2005 had a 0.43 BB/9. He threw 188.1 innings and walked only 9 batters that season.

Earlier I looked at who has the best WHIP for the Mets. Today let’s start with which Mets pitcher has the lowest BB/9 allowed in a single Mets season.

Lowest BB/9 in a Mets Season

Mets PitcherYearBB/9
Bret Saberhagen19940.660
Bret Saberhagen19931.098
Bartolo Colon20151.110
Rick Reed20011.136
Rick Reed19981.229
Ed Lynch19851.272
Bartolo Colon20141.334
Rick Reed19971.339
Eric Hillman19931.490
Bartolo Colon20161.503

Bret Saberhagen allowed the lowest walks per 9 innings in a Mets season. Saberhagen had an astounding 0.660 BB/9 in 1994, leading the league. He went 14 – 4 with a 2.74 ERA for the Mets that season. Saberhagen pitched 177.1 innings allowing only 13 walks while striking out 143!

Bret  Saberhagen pitching

The previous year, Saberhagen had pitched 139.1 innings and allowed only 17 walks while striking out 93. His control was so phenomenal that the few times he hit a batter (3) you could hear him shout “watch it!” as soon as the ball left his hand. He immediately knew it wasn’t going where he had intended it to go.

Other notables on the fewest walks allowed list are Rick Reed, who pitched for the Mets for five seasons. Reed was known as the poor man’s Greg Maddux. Like Maddux, Reed didn’t throw hard but his control and movement were exceptional.

Related: Who has the most strikeouts for the Mets?

The other name that also appears three times on the single-season BB/9 list is Bartolo Colon. Which brings us to the lowest allowed walks per 9 innings in Mets history.

Lowest BB/9 in Mets History

Mets PitcherCareer BB/9
Bartolo Colon1.315
Bret Saberhagen1.322
Rick Reed1.600
Ed Lynch1.947
Noah Syndergaard2.087
Jacob deGrom2.173
R.A. Dickey2.189
Frank Viola2.241
Jack Fisher2.338
Matt Harvey2.464

Bartolo Colon allowed the lowest walks per 9 innings in New York Mets franchise history. Colon had a 1.315 BB/9 over his 3 seasons with the Mets. He narrowly beats Bret Saberhagen who had a 1.322 BB/9 over his 4 years with the team. In 588.2 innings pitched, Colon walked just 86 batters. For his 21 year career, Colon had a 2.5 BB/9. He once threw 38 consecutive strikes during a game.

Seeing the name of knuckle-baller R.A. Dickey on the list is pretty amazing. It shows what an unusual knuckle-baller he was. They usually have horrible control. But Dickey threw the ball hard and had surprising control.

Related: R.A. Dickey’s consecutive scoreless innings streak.

It’s also impressive seeing current Mets pitchers Noah Syndergaard and Jacob deGrom on the list. Both of them, along with former Met Matt Harvey, are power pitchers. So having such good control along with that power is unusual.