Jeff McKnight – His New York Mets Career 1989,1992-1994

Jeff McKnightThe Mets drafted Jeff McKnight in the 2nd round of the 1983 amateur draft.  After spending 7 seasons in the minors he finally made his Major League debut on June 6, 1989 against the Chicago Cubs In his first Major League at bat as a pinch hitter for Roger McDowell. he singled.  The next day he made his first career start.  As the Mets starting 2nd baseman he went 1 for 2 with 2 walks as the Mets beat the Cubs 10-8.  McKnight appeared in 6 games before being sent back to the minors.  He batted .250 (3 for 12) while playing all 4 infield positions.

Following the 1989 season McKnight was released by the Mets and he was picked up by the Baltimore Orioles.  He returned to the Mets as a free agent on December 21, 1991.   He started the 1992 season in the minors before getting recalled in August.   He appeared in 31 games playing in both the infield and outfield and batted .271 with 2 home runs and 13 RBIs.  His first home run came on September 15, a two-run shot that propelled the Mets to a 4-2 win over the Cubs.

McKnight spent the entire 1993 with the Mets serving as a utility player and pinch hitter and appeared in 105 games.  He hit .256 with 2 home runs and 13 RBIs.  He started the 1994 season with the Mets and was used exclusively as a pinch hitter but hit just .148 (4 for 27) with 2 RBIs.  He was sent back to the minors in June.  He returned in August and appeared in one game on August 11 against the Philadelphia Phillies.  He hit a pinch-hit single in 7th inning.  It would be his last appearance in a Major League uniform and his last hit.  The next day the players went on strike and would not return until 1995. 

 He was granted free agency following the season but did not sign with another team.  In 173 career games for the Mets McKnight hit .250 with 4 home runs and 28 RBIs.

While with the Mets McKnight wore number 15 in 1989, number 5 in 1992, numbers 7 and 17 in 1993 and number 18 in 1994.

Jeff McKnight also played for the Baltimore Orioles in 1990 and 1991

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Joe Orsulak – His New York Mets Career 1993-1995

 

Joe OrsulakThe Mets signed Joe Orsulak, an outfielder and occasional first baseman, as a free agent on December 18, 1992.  He made his Met debut on Opening Day 1993 as their starting centerfielder.  He singled in his first at bat and finished the game 1 for 3 as the Mets defeated the Colorado Rockies 3-0.  He went on to appear in 134 games and batted .284 with 8 home runs and 35 RBIs.  He enjoyed two four hit games, on June 30 against the Florida Marlins and August 18 against the Cincinnati Reds, both wins by the Mets. 

In 1994 Orsulak appeared in 96 games and batted .260 with 8 home runs and 42 RBIs.  He hit a 3-run home run in the Mets 7-4 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers on May 1.  Two days later he hit a grand slam to give the Mets a 5-4 lead over the San Francisco Giants, unfortunately the Mets lost 6-5.  He was also the here on May 17 against the Florida Marlins, he hit a home run in the 6th inning and won the game with a two-run walk-off single in the 9th inning.

Orsulak hit .283 with a home run and 37 RBIs in 1995. His only home run came on August 7, a pinch-hit 3-run home run that propelled the Met to a 5-2 win over the Florida Marlins.  On August 26 he went 3 for 3 and drove in 3 runs as the Mets defeated the San Diego Padres 7-6.

Following the season Orsulak signed with the Florida Marlins as a free agent.  In 338 career games he batted .274 with 17 home runs and 114 RBIs.

While with the Mets Orsulak wore number 6.

Joe Orsulak also played for the following teams:
Pittsburgh Pirates – 1983-1986
Baltimore Orioles – 1988-1992
Florida Marlins – 1996
Montreal Expos – 1997

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Mauro Gozzo – His New York Mets Career 1993,1994

Mauro GozzoThe Mets initially drafted right-handed pitcher Mauro Gozzo in the 13th round of the 1984 amateur draft.  After spending three seasons in the minors he was traded along with Ed Hearn and Rick Anderson to the Kansas City Royal in exchange for David Cone and Chris Jelic.  After bouncing around both the majors and minors for five years he returned to the Mets as a free agent, signing with them on December 22, 1992.  After spending the 1993 season in the minors Gozzo made his Met debut on September 6, 1993 against the Houston Astros.  He pitched the 8th inning and allowed 2 hits and 3 runs in the Mets 7-2 defeat.  Gozzo appeared in 10 games for the Mets over the last month of the season and posted a 0-1 record with one save and a 2.57 ERA.   His one save came on September 18 when he pitched a scoreless 10th inning in the Mets 3-2 victory over the Atlanta Braves. 

Gozzo started the 1994 season in the minors before joining New York at the end of April.  He would appear in 23 games for the Mets, 8 as a starter, posting a 3-5 record with a 4.83 ERA.  He earned his first win as a Met on May 8 against the St. Louis Cardinals when as the starter he allowed 2 hits and 2 runs over 7 innings as the Mets won 3-2.  He also won his next start against the Atlanta Braves on May 14.  As a starter Gozzo went 2-3

Following the season Gozzo was granted free agency ending his Met career.  In 33 career games for the Mets Gozzo posted a 3-6 record with 1 save and a 4.45 ERA.

While with the Mets Gozzo wore number 45.

Mauro Gozzo also played for the following teams:
Toronto Blue Jays – 1989
Cleveland Indians – 1990,1991
Minnesota Twins – 1992

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Josias Manzanillo – His New York Mets Career 1993-1995,1999

Josias ManzanilloThe Mets obtained right-handed relief pitcher Josias Manzanillo from the Milwaukee Brewers on June 12, 1993 in exchange for Wayne Housie.  He initially reported to the minors before getting called up to New York in August.  Manzanillo made his Met debut on August 21st against the Colorado Rockies.  He pitched two innings of scoreless relief in the Mets 8-6 defeat.  He appeared in six games and posted a 0-0 record with a 3.00 ERA.

Manzanillo appeared in 37 games for the Mets in 1994 and finished with a 3-2 record with 2 saves and a 2.66 ERA.  He earned his first win as a Met on June 12th against the Montreal Expos. He entered the game in the 7th inning with the game tied and pitched 1 2/3 innings of scoreless relief and was the pitcher of record when the Mets took the lead in the 8th inning.   He earned his first save on May 8th when he pitched the final two innings of the Mets 3-2 win over the St. Louis Cardinals

Manzanillo started the 1995 season with the Mets and appeared in 12 games before the Mets placed him om waivers and he was claimed by the New York Yankees.  At the time he was 1 and 2 with a 7.88 ERA over 16 innings.

He returned to the Mets in 1999 and appeared in 12 games and posted a 0-0 record with a 5.79 ERA.  Following the season, he was granted free agency and signed with the Pittsburgh Pirates.  In 67 career games for the Met Manzanillo won 4 games and lost 4 while saving 2 games with a 4.21 ERA.

While with the Mets Manzanillo wore number 39.

Josias Manzanillo also played for the following teams:
Boston Red Sox – 1991
Milwaukee Brewers – 1993
New York Yankees – 1995
Seattle Mariners – 1997
Pittsburgh Pirates – 2000-2002
Cincinnati Reds – 2003
Florida Marlins – 2004

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Jim Lindeman – His New York Mets Career 1994

JIm LindemanThe Mets signed free agent Jim Lindeman on December 16, 1993. After starting the 1994 season in the minors he made his Mets debut on May 20 against the Philadelphia Phillies as a pinch hitter for pitcher Frank Seminara, for the record he walked. The next day as the starting leftfielder he went 3 for 5 with 2 doubles and an RBI. Lindeman would go on to appear in 52 games for the Mets mainly in the outfield with an occasional stint at first base. He hit .270 with 7 home runs and 20 RBIs.

Some highlights of Lindeman’s season included a 3 for 5 performance with 2 RBIs against the Colorado Rockies on June 7. On June 11 he hit his first home run as a Met against the Montreal Expos. He went 3 for 4 with 2 doubles and 2 RBIs against the St. Louis Cardinals on June 28.

1994 would be Lindeman’s only season with the Mets and the last of his 9-year career.

While with the Mets Lindeman wore number 29.

Jim Lindeman also played for the following teams:
St. Louis Cardinals – 1986-1989
Detroit Tigers – 1990
Philadelphia Phillies – 1991,1992
Houston Astros = 1993

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Rick Parker – His New York Mets Career 1994

The Mets signed Rick Parker as a free agent on December 16, 1993.  He started the 1994 season in the minors before being promoted to New York in May.  He made his Met debut on May 13 as the starting leftfielder against the Atlanta Braves.  He went 0 for 2 before being removed from the game for pinch hitter Fernando Vina.  He appeared in 7 more games before returning to the minors.  In his brief time with the Mets he batted .062 (1 for 16). His only hit came on May 26 against the Pittsburgh Pirates, a 6th inning single in the Mets 11-10 defeat. Parker finished the season in the minors where he batted .268 with 2 home runs and 16 RBIs.

Parker did return to the Mets organization in 1998 but spent the entire season in the minors.

While with the Mets Parker wore number 11.

Rick Parker also played for the following teams:
San Francisco Giants – 1990,1991
Houston Astros – 1993
Los
Angeles Dodgers – 1995,1996

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Juan Castillo – His New York Mets Career 1994

Juan CastilloRight handed pitcher Juan Castillo was signed as a free agent by the Mets in 1988.  After spending six seasons in the minors he finally got the call to join the Mets on July 26, 1994 against the St Louis Cardinals.  Castillo started the game but allowed five runs over five innings in a game the Mets would win 10-9. He started one more game five days later against the Pittsburgh Pirates with similar results.  He pitched 6 2/3 innings and allowed four runs, once again the Mets would win the game 6-4.  During the game Castillo did manage to get his first major league hit, an RBI single in the 4th inning.  Following the game Castillo was shipped back to the minors where he finished out the season with the Norfolk Tides.

The Mets traded Juan Castillo to the Houston Astros in the off-season; he spent three seasons in their minor league system before spending one season with the Texas Rangers organization.  He retired following the 1996 season.

In two games for the Mets Juan Castillo posted a 6.94 ERA in 11 2/3 innings.

While with the Mets Castillo wore number 50.

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Roger Mason – His New York Mets Career 1994

Roger MasonThe Mets signed veteran relief pitcher Roger Mason as a free agent on December 2, 1992 but he was traded to the San Diego Padres two weeks later along Mike Freitas for Mike Maddux.  After pitching for the Padres and Phillies Mason returned to the Mets when the they purchased his contract from the Phillies on April 29, 1994. 

Mason made his Met debut on May 1, 1994 and pitched a scoreless 8th inning in their 7-4 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers.  Mason would finish out the season with the Mets appearing in 41 games, all out of the bullpen and posted a 2-4 record with 1 save and 3.51 ERA.  He earned his first win as a Met on May 9 against the Montreal Expos when he pitched 3 scoreless innings.

1994 would be Mason’s last season in the big leagues.

While with the Mets Mason wore number 48.

Roger Mason also played for the following teams:
Detroit Tigers – 1984
San Francisco Giants – 1985-1987
Houston Astros – 1989
Pittsburgh Pirates – 1991,1992
San Diego Padres – 1993
Philadelphia Phillies – 1993,1994

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Jonathan Hurst – His New York Mets Career 1994

Jonathan HurstRight-handed pitcher Jonathan Hurst, a career minor leaguer who had a brief cup of coffee with the Montreal Expos in 1992 was signed by the Mets as a free agent prior to the 1994 season. He made his Met debut on April 5, 1994 against the Chicago Cubs and pitched two innings of scoreless relief in the Mets 6-2 victory. Unfortunately, his strong debut did not last. He appeared in a total of seven games for the Mets in the month of April, posting a 0-1 record with a 12.60 ERA in 10 innings. He was shipped back to the minors after allowing six runs in two innings of work on April 21st against the Los Angeles Dodgers. It would be his last appearance in a Major League uniform. He would finish out the season pitching for the Norfolk Tides, the Mets top farm club, where he posted a 5-4 record with a 3.78 ERA.

Hurst went on to pitch in Mexico, Taiwan and Japan before retiring from playing in 2005. He returned to the Mets organization in 2006 as the pitching coach for the Kingsport Mets, their rookie league affiliate.

While with the Mets Hurst wore number 13.

Jonathan Hurst also played for the Montreal Expos in 1992.

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Bobby Jones – His New York Mets Career – 1993-2000

Bobby J JonesThe New York Mets drafted right handed pitcher Bobby Jones in the first round of the 1991 amateur draft with a compensation pick they received when Darryl Strawberry signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers as a free agent. After spending three seasons in the minors where he won 25 games, Bobby Jones made his Met debut on August 14, 1993 against the Philadelphia Phillies.  He pitched 6 innings allowing just one earned run for his first major league win.  He would finish out the season 2 – 4 with a 3.65 ERA.  In his last start of the season Jones pitched 10 innings of shutout ball and struck out 9 batters against the St, Louis Cardinals, a game the Mets would win 1-0 in 17 innings.

Bobby Jones made the Mets starting rotation out of Spring Training in 1994 as their number 3 starter.  He would go on to have a solid season for the Mets winning 12 games, 2nd to Bret Saberhagen’s team best 14, in the strike shortened season.  Now firmly entrenched in the Mets starting rotation Jones was named the opening day starter in 1995, he would go on to lead the team with 10 wins, unfortunately he also led the team with 10 losses.  He followed that up with a 12 and 8 season in 1996.   

1997 would be Bobby Jones’ best season in the majors. After starting the season 3 and 2 he reeled off 8 straight victories and was named the National League Pitcher of the Month for May.  During the month, Jones won all 5 of his starts while posting a 1.15 ERA.  He would finish the season with a career best 15 wins.  Along the way, he made his first and only All-Star game appearance where he pitched one inning and retired the side in order striking out 2 including future Hall of Famer Ken Griffey Jr.  

After posting a 9 and 9 season in 1998, Jones suffered through an injury plagued 1999 appearing in only 12 games winning just 3.  The Mets advanced to the playoffs in 1999 but Jones was left off the postseason roster.  He returned in 2000 as the Mets number 5 starter.  Despite a 5.06 ERA he managed to win 11 games and helped the Mets reach the postseason for the second consecutive season 

In the National League Divisional Series against the San Francisco Giants, Jones was tabbed to pitch game 4 with the Mets leading the series 2 games to 1.  Bobby Jones would go on to pitch arguably the greatest game in Mets history, throwing a complete game one hit shutout. He retired the side in order in 8 of the 9 innings.  With the win the Mets clinched the series and advanced to the National League Championship Series.   Even though the Mets would eventually advance to the World Series it would be Bobby Jones’ last victory in a Met uniform.  Following the season Bobby Jones signed with the San Diego Padres as a free agent, where he pitched two more seasons before retiring.   

In 8 seasons with the Mets Bobby Jones pitched in 193 regular seasons games and posted a 74 and 56 record with a 4.13 ERA.

While with the Mets Jones wore number 28.

Bobby Jones also played for the San Diego Padres in 2001 and 2002.

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