(From the archives — originally posted 11/2/09)
Gil Hodges (1962-1963)
Not in the Hall of Fame, but he certainly should be. His 2 seasons with the Mets don’t help his case, hitting 9 homers in just 65 games. For his career, Hodges hit 370 homers, and drove in more than 100 runs 7 years in a row.
Duke Snider (1963)
Snider hit 14 home runs and batted .243 in his one season with the Mets. It was a far cry from the rest of his Hall of Fame career, in which he slammed 407 homers, including 5 straight seasons of 40+ when 40 homers really meant something.
Warren Spahn (1965)
It’s easy to forget that one of the greatest lefties of all time pitched for the Mets. That’s because by the time they got him, Spahn was 44 years old, and went 4-12 before being released mid-season. Spahn won 363 career games (6th all-time), including an impossible 13 years of 20+ wins.
Yogi Berra (1965)
Yogi barely makes the list, appearing in just 4 games in his solo season with the Mets. But his Hall of Fame credentials were cemented in 18 seasons with the Yankees — 358 homers, 1430 RBIs and 3 MVP awards.
Nolan Ryan (1966, 1968-1971)
Ryan showed promise with the Mets — 29-38, but with a 3.58 ERA and averaging nearly a strikeout per inning. But it was after he left the Mets that he became the Nolan Ryan we now know — 324 wins, a record 5714 strikeouts, and those incredible 7 no-hitters.
Tom Seaver (1967-1977, 1983)
Finally, a great player who actually had great years for the Mets! Seaver leads the Mets in virtually every pitching category, and finished his career with 311 wins, 3640 strikeouts and 2.86 ERA.
Willie Mays (1972-1973)
One of the greatest players of all time, Mays was a mere shell of himself when he returned to New York at age 41. For his career, Mays had 660 homers (4th all-time), 1903 RBIs (10th), 3283 hits (11th), and won 2 MVP awards.
Eddie Murray (1992-1993)
Murray actually had 2 pretty good years with the Mets, hitting a total of 43 home runs and driving in 193 runs. The rest of his Hall of Fame career was pretty good as well — 504 homers, 1913 RBIs (9th all-time) and 3255 hits (12th).
Mike Piazza (1998-2005)
Hey, another guy with actual Mets credentials. The best Mets hitter ever and the greatest hitting catcher of all-time, Piazza finished up his career with 427 home runs and a .308 batting average.
Rickey Henderson (1999-2000)
Rickey’s first year with the Mets was good — at age 40 he stole 37 bases and hit .315. He was released in May of the second year after a terrible start. Overall, he had 3055 hits, and holds the all-time marks with 2295 runs and an incredible 1406 stolen bases.
Mug Shots Courtesy Ultimate Mets Database, http://ultimatemets.com/mugshots.php