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Saturday, September 08, 2007

Darryl Strawberry

Eligible in 2005.

John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: September 08, 2007 at 07:40 PM | 46 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: September 08, 2007 at 07:47 PM (#2516766)
A very disappointing career, considering what he could do with the bat. Nevertheless, he was a great one for a while.

One of the most beautiful swings ever displayed.
   2. JPWF13 Posted: September 08, 2007 at 07:55 PM (#2516776)
Through age 29 had an OPS+ of 144, with 280 homers,only 2 of his BBREF comps had a higehr OPS+ through 29, Reggie and Barry Bonds.
Killebrew was closest at 143- Killer was also his only comp to have outhomered him by age 29.

At age 36 when he temporarily got his act together he hit for an 131 OPS+ in 345 PAs
If not for his various issues, I assume he could have OPS+'d 130-140 from ages 30-36
600 PAs a year, 4200 PAs instead of 1150 or so, 150 or so extra homers...

At a minimum his career numbers would have looked like Casneco's .266-462-1407
If he reached 500-1500 then we'd be talking HOF shot

didn't happen, wasn't even close
   3. ronw Posted: September 09, 2007 at 06:43 AM (#2517160)
Good reference Monty.

Also, no Strawberry thread would be complete without a little refrain of:

DAAARYL
DAAARYL
DAAARYL

(sniff)
   4. ronw Posted: September 09, 2007 at 06:44 AM (#2517161)
Note, the sniff above was not intended as a comment on drug use, but was a reference to Darryl's tear in "Homer at the Bat" when Bart started the Darryl chant.
   5. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: September 09, 2007 at 06:53 AM (#2517164)
One of the most beautiful swings ever displayed.
I loved how he ended his swing with that pose of left hand at sternum; right hand, holding bat, at hip.
   6. baudib Posted: September 09, 2007 at 08:28 AM (#2517182)
I've never seen a bench player as terrifying as Darryl Strawberry. It must have been what Johnny Mize was like in his days with the Yankees. I recall countless games where the opposing manager was clearly afraid to bring in a righty to face, say, Chad Curtis or Scott Brosius because he didn't want Darryl in the game.
   7. Paul Wendt Posted: September 09, 2007 at 03:10 PM (#2517257)
I last heard from one high school friend about ten years ago. In Wisconsin he had seen Darryl Strawberry hit two home runs in a Northern League(?) game and he called Strawberry a man among boys. In New Hampshire I had seen Felix Jose hit one home run in a North Atlantic League game.
   8. Grumbledook Posted: September 09, 2007 at 08:26 PM (#2517711)
I never understood why Klapisch said that the Mets not signing Strawberry after the 1990 season was a mistake. During his tenure with the Dodgers, he only had one good year (1991); after that, he wasn't very good, and didn't even play that much (435 ABs total over the next 4 seasons). The Mets front office took a gamble that they had already seen the best Strawberry had to offer, and they appear to have been vindicated.

Replacing power with speed, on the other hand, is just stupid.
   9. Sam M. Posted: September 09, 2007 at 08:49 PM (#2517748)
I never understood why Klapisch said that the Mets not signing Strawberry after the 1990 season was a mistake.

It was a mistake not in a direct sense, but in a "what does it tell you about the things this FO is thinking about" sense. They didn't sign Darryl because they were tired of his distractions, and didn't understand the value of his performance correctly because they didn't really evaluate what it meant in the context of the league and the stadium. That was demonstrated by the move they made to replace him . . . Vince Coleman, who couldn't have adequately replaced what the Mets were getting from Straw even if they'd been playing in Busch Stadium, and couldn't even come within light years of doing so at Shea.

So even if, with hindsight, knowing that Straw was going to get hurt and his career would go south, you could say that the money they didn't spend on Straw could have been better spent on something else, at the time they did it, he was the best investment they could have made. And even if he wasn't, all the things they did showed how really bad their thinking was and how they squandered the talent base they had in place in the late 80s. Sad.
   10. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: September 09, 2007 at 08:59 PM (#2517762)
Vince Coleman! I remember all the talk when the Mets signed Coleman about how he was goin to blow past Rickey!'s stolen base records. Good stuff!
   11. caprules Posted: September 09, 2007 at 09:17 PM (#2517777)
I saw Straw and Jack Morris play for the visiting Saints in Sioux City, IA in 96. IIRC, Morris pitched around 5 serviceable innings and Darryl belted two HRs and didn't try hard to catch a fly ball.
   12. Howie Menckel Posted: September 09, 2007 at 09:21 PM (#2517779)
I started going to Mets-Cubs games at Wrigley in 1986, went almost every year of the next dozen after that (and even made it back for a couple of games this summer as well).
Always sat in right field bleachers ('left field sucks' - a joke for those who remember those days).

Darryl used to LOVE the chanting and taunting.
He'd cup his ear to the bleachers, acting as if he couldn't hear them.
The DA-RYL chants - yes, born in Boston, but raised in Chicago - would get deafening.
He'd laugh and pretend he STILL couldn't hear them.

Crowd got such a kick out of it - he didn't ignore them, and he didn't get angry.
He toyed with them.

So much of his life was played out on his own carefree terms.
So much of it has been a disaster.

So much of it is his own fault.
Some of it is arguably unforgivable.

I still wish him well.
   13. Sam M. Posted: September 09, 2007 at 09:30 PM (#2517785)
My favorite Straw moment was at the climax of the 1985 pennant race against the Cardinals. The Mets went to St. Louis with six games to play, trailing by 3. They basically needed to sweep, because winning two of three would still leave them two behind with three to play . . . and they knew the Cards weren't going to lose 2 of 3 in their last series. In Game 1, Davey refused considerable media pressure to pitch Doc Gooden on short rest, because the Cards were throwing their ace, Tudor. Davey said he had faith in Ron Darling, and since the Mets needed to win all three anyway, Darling would have to be strong in one of the games; why not the first one?

Well, Darling and Tudor matched brilling performances. Darling pitched 9 shutout innings of 4-hit ball; Tudor pitched 10, six-hits. What a game. In the top of the 11th, Tudor is finally out of the game. With two outs, Darryl comes up against a tough lefty, Ken Dayley, and he hits an absolute bomb, off the clock on the scoreboard in Busch Stadium, to put the Mets ahead 1-0, and ultimately win the game. It was immense, both how high and far it went, and how critical it was. And to do it off a lefty like that . . . unreal.

Doc won the next night, to bring the Mets within one game with four to play . . . but then the Cardinals won the finale, and ended up winning a classic race with 101 wins to the Mets' 98. But Darryl's Clock Shot kept that dream alive for another night. What a moment.
   14. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: September 09, 2007 at 09:39 PM (#2517792)
Howie:

My sentiments exactly.

Sam:

That was a great game and season, despite the Mets losing it in the end.
   15. OCF Posted: September 10, 2007 at 12:51 AM (#2517901)
Well, Darling and Tudor matched brilling performances. Darling pitched 9 shutout innings of 4-hit ball; Tudor pitched 10, six-hits.

There were three games that year, all happening within a rather short span of time, that satisfied these two conditions:

1. Both starting pitchers pitched at least 9 innings.
2. Neither starting pitcher ever allowed a run.

Sure, that's probably happened a number of times in baseball history, but it can't be common. And these three games could have involved as many as six teams and six starting pitchers. Instead, it's just three teams and just four starting pitchers (and not that many relievers, either).

Sept. 6, in LA, Gooden/Valenzuela. 13 innings. Orosco the winning pitcher, Niedenfuer the loser. Valenzuela pitched 11 innings.
Sept. 11, in NY, Tudor/Gooden. 10 innings. Tudor the winning pitcher, Orosco the loser.
Oct. 1, in StL, Darling/Tudor. 11 innings. Orosco the winning pitcher, Dayley the loser. The game Sam and John are talking about.

In the final statistics for that year, Tudor led the league in shutouts with 10, with Gooden second at 8 and Valenzuela tied for third with 5. It seems fair (although not within the rules) to amend those numbers to 11 for Tudor, 10 for Gooden, 6 for Valenzuela, and 3 instead of 2 for Darling.

One side note: Valenzuela, at the age of 24, was having arguably his best season: 272 innings at an ERA+ of 143. He never again had a year nearly as good. How much did going 11 innings in a game in September really take out of him? Even for the rest of that year, his performance after Sept. 6 didn't match what he'd done earlier that year.
   16. OCF Posted: September 10, 2007 at 12:53 AM (#2517904)
#11, Shooty: Vince Coleman!

Oops, I let the moment get away. I actually was going to make a comment about his career - and it should have gone on the 2003 discussion thread. Maybe if I have time this week ...
   17. Jeff K. Posted: September 10, 2007 at 12:59 AM (#2517907)
He had that goofy lifting his front leg thing, too. I actually remember that more than the swing itself, as memorable as that was. I can still do a perfect imitation of his stance.
   18. Sam M. Posted: September 10, 2007 at 01:14 AM (#2517921)
Sept. 6, in LA, Gooden/Valenzuela. 13 innings. Orosco the winning pitcher, Niedenfuer the loser. Valenzuela pitched 11 innings.
Sept. 11, in NY, Tudor/Gooden. 10 innings. Tudor the winning pitcher, Orosco the loser.


Note: back-to-back starts for Gooden in which that happened. In a season in which he nevertheless went 24-4. One run from the offense in each of those games, and the guy goes 26-4. What a year.

That "arguably best season" of Fernando's career? Totally lost in the dominance of Gooden (226 ERA+) and Tudor (poor guy -- 183 ERA+ in a 21 win season, and he loses a unanimous CYA vote to Gooden). Valenzuela was 6th, and 3rd on an excellent Dodgers' staff behind Orel and Bob Welch.

To turn back to Darryl, that was also the season the Mets hopes were severely compromised by Strawberry missing 45 games or so with a thumb injury he suffered (on May 11) when he dove for a fly ball. He didn't return to the line-up until June 28th. On May 11th, the Mets were 18-8, in first place by a game (and 5.5 games ahead of the then-4th place Cardinals). By the time he returned on June 28th, they were 38-32, tied for 3rd, 3.5 games out (3 games back of St. Louis). They went 20-24 without him. Ah, what might have been . . . .
   19. AndrewJ Posted: September 10, 2007 at 01:19 AM (#2517924)
Note: back-to-back starts for Gooden in which that happened. In a season in which he nevertheless went 24-4. One run from the offense in each of those games, and the guy goes 26-4. What a year.

Don't worry -- the BBWAA would've still awarded the MVP to Willie McGee...
   20. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: September 10, 2007 at 02:03 PM (#2518153)
Notes on Strawberry

-So I did finally read the Sokolove book, The Ticket Out. It's fascinating. So many of those Crenshaw kids went into the MiLs in addition to Strawberry and Brown going major (you can look all of them up on the baseball cube). Well worth reading, very well written, sympathetic to the kids and their conditions without resorting to excuse-making, excellent in explaining the cultural and economic conditions of the Crenshaw area, an engaging read.

-The Clock Shot: Darryl hit a lot of famously long homers. That's one. Another is the space shot in Montreal. I don't remember exactly where it hit, but I think it was that he nailed the retaining ring the dome's ceiling sat upon, which meant that the trajectory was immensely high and mammothly long.

-Not signing Straw was indeed the capstone move of the dismantly of the Mets of the 1980s. Carter got old and left. Hernandez did the same. Ray Knight and Mookie too. They traded away two outsized characters (Dykstra and McDowell), and another kid they thought was troubled (Mitchell). Backman was dealt, so was Randy Myers. And then they got rid of Davey. What kind of players did they now prefer to the batch of young hooligans? Kevin McReynolds, the JD Drew of his time; Juan Samuel, who wasn't problematic clubhouse wise, but never fit in; John Franco, who was a great fit for NY, but was a nice guy; quiet Dave Magadan. They tried to mix the next generation of young guys on the farm with veterans and ended up with Jefferies, Magadan, Elster, Miller, Carreon, Sasser, Donnells, Hundley, Shourek, Young, and Valera in the young crowd and veterans like Boston, HoJo, Cone, Cerone, Viola, Saberhagen, Franco, A. Pena, Burke, Brooks, Coleman, and Templeton. It was a very weird time: the judgment that had helped Cashen and company select an outstanding veteran core and give meaningful time to oustanding prospects in the mid 1980s had been diminished just enough that the team didn't trust the young guys as much, the young guys weren't as good as the previous generation, and the veterans they selected weren't quite as good as the previous batch. Worse yet, they chose Buddy Harrelson, an uptight kind of manager to lead this pastiche. 77-84 by 1991, and only worse from there. And seemingly because they wanted to banish the egos, the crazies, and anything else that reminded them of the topsy-turvy 1986 team.

-Here's a 1986 Series telecast memory. I don't remember if the NBC guys discovered this, or whether they simply reported it, but whenever Darryl reached base, they would focus on his feet, because he had a tell. If he was going to be running on the pitch, he would screw his foot into the ground (his right, lead, foot, I think).
   21. DL from MN Posted: September 10, 2007 at 02:54 PM (#2518193)
Man I love that Homer at the Bat episode with Strawberry kissing up to Burns. "No hustle either, skip." My softball team is the Isotopes and we must spit lines from that episode at least every other game. We won the city league and the company tournament this year!
   22. The Wilpons Must Go (Tom D) Posted: September 12, 2007 at 02:40 AM (#2520901)
And seemingly because they wanted to banish the egos, the crazies, and anything else that reminded them of the topsy-turvy 1986 team.

I still remember being told that Hubie Brooks would "do the little things that helped teams win." Very little.

Another is the space shot in Montreal.

Darryl had charisma. I heard that call on the radio. Opening day 1988. It was a few weeks after my mother died of an illness that essentially had covered the off season. When baseball was back and Darryl (Darryl, not anyone else because it would haven't been quite the same) hit that blast, it meant a lot to me.
   23. Boots Day Posted: September 12, 2007 at 03:26 AM (#2520966)
I had been laboring under the conception that Darryl's clock shot game was also the game where Vince Coleman (I think) tried to break up Darling's no-hitter with a bunt, and Darling ended up jamming his thumb into the ground on the play. From your recap, it sounds like I am confused. When was that game?
   24. Sam M. Posted: September 12, 2007 at 04:05 AM (#2520987)
Darryl's clock shot game was also the game where Vince Coleman (I think) tried to break up Darling's no-hitter with a bunt, and Darling ended up jamming his thumb into the ground on the play. From your recap, it sounds like I am confused. When was that game?

It was 20 years ago today that Ron Darling taught the Cards to play, Boots.

IOW, that game was in 1987, the other year when the Mets lost the division race to the Cardinals. On 9/11, the Mets were leading the Cardinals 4-1 going to the 9th. Darling had been dominant through six, giving up a run w/o a hit in the first. In the sixth, Coleman did indeed bunt for the Cards' first hit of the game. Darling somehow finished the inning, but it was his last appearance of the season.

McDowell and Orosco combined to blow the game -- and in many ways, the season -- by giving up 3 in the 9th and two more in the 10th. Sigh.
   25. Sam M. Posted: September 12, 2007 at 04:07 AM (#2520989)
Let me amend that: Darling did start the 7th, issuing a walk to Driessen, but then left the game. Myers got them through the 7th, then McDowell was fine in the 8th . . . but fell apart in the 9th. Instead of pulling within a half game, the Mets fell 2.5 behind, and lost Darling for the rest of the year. Ouch.
   26. OCF Posted: September 12, 2007 at 05:56 AM (#2521030)
I wrote a piece for a few friends several years ago in which I compared Strawberry to Joe Jackson. I dredged it up to see what I could salvage for here, and decided that it doesn't hold up very well. I don't really see a mid-21st-century successor to W.P. Kinsiella seizing upon Strawberry as a mythic and romantic figure. In each case, I don't offer his relative lack of quality education as any kind of excuse for the actions which took him away from the game. But of course the level of performance isn't the same. However, on the subject of level of performance, I did note that the top 5 or 7 players in the NL of the mid-80's turned over pretty dramatically from year to year, while in the AL of the early teens, it was the same guys every year: Cobb, Speaker, Collins, Baker, Johnson, Jackson.
   27. The District Attorney Posted: September 12, 2007 at 03:38 PM (#2521294)
whenever Darryl reached base, they would focus on his feet, because he had a tell. If he was going to be running on the pitch, he would screw his foot into the ground (his right, lead, foot, I think).
Darryl was never much for the little things. He also literally stood in the same spot defensively all season. Tim McCarver used to go on and on about the "Strawberry patch" that Darryl wore out in the outfield grass.

(To be fair to Darryl, this made a lot more sense to me when I was 13; hearing it now, I wonder why if he wasn't where he was supposed to be, Davey Johnson didn't tell him to move? Isn't positioning the manager's job?)

But even with those problems with the little things, Darryl was so, so good at the big things, like running, throwing, being a patient hitter and hitting the ball nine miles. Hell, Vlad Guerrero does nutty things half the time, and Darryl had that level of talent: it took a slightly different form, but that same type of unbelievable ability.

Until David Wright puts a few more years in, I would still say Straw has been the greatest hitter in Mets history, although Piazza and Hernandez were better overall players.
   28. Paul Wendt Posted: September 12, 2007 at 05:24 PM (#2521456)
If Pedro Guerrero were a USAmerican native English-speaker would he be a legend like Darryl Strawberry?
Maybe not, because he didn't (seem to) have the great running and throwing talent --didn't "have it all".

On a related theme, is it true that no right-handed batter has a swing so classic or distinctive as the the greatest left-handed swings? It must be false, I know, but a whole lotta lefties spring to mind.
   29. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: September 12, 2007 at 06:01 PM (#2521533)
Paul,

Great question. DiMaggio's swing might be closest to that. Most righties, however, seem to be known for oddball swings or stances: Ju. Franco, Al Simmons, Bagwell, etc....
   30. baseball fanatic Posted: September 12, 2007 at 06:09 PM (#2521545)
Edgar Martinez had a nice swing among right-handed batters.
   31. sunnyday2 Posted: September 12, 2007 at 06:34 PM (#2521583)
Being a midwesterner, I always have trouble remembering who played for the Mets other than the mid-'80s and Seaver and Harrelson. Thinking about Straw makes me want to ask. Anybody want to remind me what a Mets all-time team would look like?

C- Carter or Piazza? A hell of a roster there!
1B- Hernandez. Nice
2B- ???
SS- Harrelson? Is that as good as it gets? Or does Reyes already beat him?
3B- HoJo? Wright already?
OF- Besides Straw...? No idea. Cleon?
SP- Seaver, Kooz and what?
RP- Franco?
   32. sunnyday2 Posted: September 12, 2007 at 06:34 PM (#2521585)
Oh, when you want a Twins all-time team, you let me know ;-)
   33. JPWF13 Posted: September 12, 2007 at 06:41 PM (#2521604)
Until David Wright puts a few more years in, I would still say Straw has been the greatest hitter in Mets history, although Piazza and Hernandez were better overall players.


Rank Player OPS+ PA
1. Darryl Strawberry 145 4549
2. John Olerud 143 2018
3. David Wright 139 2226
4. Mike Piazza 137 3941
5. Keith Hernandez 130 3684
6. Bobby Bonilla 128 2040
7. Howard Johnson 124 4591
8. Dave Magadan 122 2483
9. Kevin McReynolds 120 3218
10. Steve Henderson 120 2029

Stevie Blunder will drop off when Beltran reaches 2000 PAs as a Met.

Rank Player RC PA
1. Darryl Strawberry 759 4549
2. Mike Piazza 675 3941
3. Edgardo Alfonzo 671 4449
4. Howard Johnson 663 4591
5. Ed Kranepool 638 5997
6. Cleon Jones 586 4683
7. Keith Hernandez 546 3684
8. Mookie Wilson 519 4307
9. Lee Mazzilli 462 3496
10. Bud Harrelson 458 5083

considering the Mets have been around 40+ years their top ten lists are weak.
Top 10 in RC have combined for 5977- the Astros top 10 have combined for 10,190- their #10 guy would be 6th on the Mets. The Angels top 10 have combined for 7644, and the Rangers/Senators2 have 7652.

Wright, Reyes and Beltran will probably end up dominating the Mets top 10 lists in a few years.
   34. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: September 12, 2007 at 06:45 PM (#2521612)
SS- Harrelson? Is that as good as it gets? Or does Reyes already beat him?


Not yet, but a couple of more seasons will do it.

3B- HoJo? Wright already?


Like Reyes, Wright needs a couple of more seasons.

OF- Besides Straw...? No idea. Cleon?


Straw in right, Mookie in center and Jones in left.
   35. John (You Can Call Me Grandma) Murphy Posted: September 12, 2007 at 06:53 PM (#2521624)
SP- Seaver, Kooz and what?


Seaver, Koosman, Gooden, Fernandez and a battle between Matlack and Leiter.

RP- Franco?


Sounds right.

2B- ???


I would give it Alfonzo.
   36. The District Attorney Posted: September 12, 2007 at 06:55 PM (#2521629)
Alfonzo would be the 2B, and I would really think you would have to put Reyes at SS. I'd personally put Wright at 3B, but you can put HoJo if you want him to hold the spot for a year or two more. The SP would be Seaver, Koosman, Gooden, Leiter and Cone. Franco and McGraw would be your big relievers (it's a strange thing; along with Wagner, Randy Myers, and the all-time appearance leader Orosco, the team has had a disproportionate number of the all-time great lefty relievers. Of course, Schoeneweis may balance all of them out.) The OF is indeed pathetic. Straw's the only guy who even played 1,000 games. I'd say him, Staub, and Mazzilli holding Beltran's CF spot. You could also argue McReynolds, or if you're heavily weighing longevity with the Mets, Mookie.
   37. JPWF13 Posted: September 12, 2007 at 06:57 PM (#2521633)
C- Carter or Piazza? A hell of a roster there!
1B- Hernandez. Nice
2B- ???
SS- Harrelson? Is that as good as it gets? Or does Reyes already beat him?
3B- HoJo? Wright already?
OF- Besides Straw...? No idea. Cleon?
SP- Seaver, Kooz and what?
RP- Franco?


2b- Edgardo Alfonzo in a runaway 1999-2000 are far and away the best 2 seasons by a Met 2b imho
SS- Harrelson's OPS+ of 76 was better than Bowa and Buddy was a better fielder- Bowa was more durable and played on better teams- unfortunately for Buddy in the 60s, 70s and into the 80s SSs were often rated by how good their teams were not by how good they were. Reyes has a higher peak and I'd say passes him with one more year at 2006/07 levels, if he hasn't passed him already.
3b- HoJo is "still" probably ahead, plus he had a 169 OPS+ peak, best 5 seasons as a regular 169, 145, 133, 124, 106.... I'd say Wright ties or passes him if his 2008 is in line with 2005-2007.
OF- Straw and and and...
McReynolds (it hurt to say that)Cleon Jones, Rusty Staub, Mazzilli, Beltran, Agee...

I'd say Straw, Staub and Jones...
SP: Seaver, GOODEN, Koosman, then Darling, Leiter, El Sid and Cone in some order- maybe Matlack too.
RP: Franco, Tug, Orosoco...
   38. AndrewJ Posted: September 12, 2007 at 10:03 PM (#2521899)
I wrote a piece for a few friends several years ago in which I compared Strawberry to Joe Jackson. I dredged it up to see what I could salvage for here, and decided that it doesn't hold up very well. I don't really see a mid-21st-century successor to W.P. Kinsiella seizing upon Strawberry as a mythic and romantic figure.

Michael Sokolove's nonfiction THE TICKET OUT does a good job of putting Strawberry's career in context with his high school teammates.
   39. Howie Menckel Posted: September 12, 2007 at 11:51 PM (#2522045)
Darling just now told a story during the Mets-Braves broadcast about the 1987 game.
He said after he exited with the injury, they told him he would need to go the hospital sometime that night, and he left a bit later.
He recalled that whenever it might rain, he would park his car right under the "Big Apple" beyond the CF fence, because it was a convertible.
Darling said he had just gotten to his car when Pendleton's HR landed - and on one bounce, it hit his car.

Even fellow announcer Keith Hernandez was amazed, never having heard that story....
   40. Howie Menckel Posted: September 13, 2007 at 12:39 AM (#2522179)
Ratings Mets SPs by most impact (for better or worse, though better preferred, combining IP, W-L, ERA+), I have it:
Seaver
Koosman
Gooden
Leiter
Matlack
Fernandez
Darling
Cone
BJones
Swan

The top 9 there also are in the top 9 in career Mets wins. 10th in Ws is Trachsel (!) with 66.
Haven't updates for this year, probably now Glavine in the top 10. Rick Reed, Al Jackson, Jack Fisher round out the top 15 with Glavine and Trachsel.
   41. rico vanian Posted: September 17, 2007 at 03:21 PM (#2528401)
For of all sad words of tongue or pen, the saddest are these: 'It might have been.

Thinking of what Darryl and Doc could have done if not for substance abuse is too depressing.
   42. Dr. Chaleeko Posted: September 17, 2007 at 04:20 PM (#2528503)
was there any overlap or link between hernandez's drug use and doc/straw's. i don't think i've ever heard there was, but i just realized it might have been worth asking. It is interesting to note about the late 1980s Mets that their roster included:

Hernandez: known coke user
Strawberry: known coke user (and other troubles)
Doc Gooden: known coke user
Kevin Mitchell: known (I think) ganger member
Wally Backman: would later be a tax evader (wasn't that the issue that bounced him from AZ?, might be wrong)
David Cone: alledged rapist/sexual assaulter
Wes Gardner: Didn't he get in trouble for hitting his wife/girlfriend?

A combustible group. I don't know that this makes them much different from other teams, just more public.
   43. HowardMegdal Posted: September 17, 2007 at 04:35 PM (#2528531)
Thinking of what Darryl and Doc could have done if not for substance abuse is too depressing.

I do think this is overstated with Mr. Gooden, who was never the same after the arm injury. Did drugs exacerbate his chances of getting hurt? Possibly, but look at all the innings so young- he's a textbook example of pitcher overuse.

Darryl is a different story. How many more HOF seasons do people think he'd have needed to get in? Would 5 more have done it?
   44. My name is Votto, and I love to get blotto Posted: September 17, 2007 at 05:29 PM (#2528615)
I never understood why Klapisch said that the Mets not signing Strawberry after the 1990 season was a mistake.


I thought it was pretty much a foregone conclusion that Strawberry and Eric Davis were going to go join the Dodgers together.
   45. JPWF13 Posted: September 17, 2007 at 06:01 PM (#2528653)
I do think this is overstated with Mr. Gooden, who was never the same after the arm injury.


Personally I always thought there was an elephant in the room during every broadcast of a Gooden start after 1986- the fastball he'd had was gone.

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