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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Vance Wilson – His New York Mets Career 1999-2004

Vance WilsonAfter two brief cups of coffee with the Mets in 1999 and 2000 catcher Vance Wilson was promoted to the Mets in July of 2001 and would stay with the big club for the next four seasons serving as backup to All-star Mike Piazza.   His greatest strength to the Mets was his ability to throw out base runners and he was used primarily as a late inning defensive replacement.  From 2001 to 2003 Wilson. was one of the top catchers in the league in throwing out base runners, averaging 45%.

Offensively he was no match for Mike Piazza, arguably the best hitting catcher in the history of the game, but Wilson did manage to put up some respectable numbers.  In 2003, he posted career bests with 8 home runs and 39 RBI’s. and hit a career best .274 in 2004.   

Following the 2004 season the Mets traded Vance Wilson to the Detroit Tigers in exchange for infielder Anderson Hernandez.  In 286 games with the Mets from 1999-2004 Wilson hit .254 with 17 home runs and 92 RBIs.  He also threw out 44% of would be base stealers.

While with the Mets Wilson wore number 3.

Vance Wilson also played for the Detroit Tigers in 2005 and 2006.

 

 

 

 

Jon Nunnally – His New York Mets Career 2000

Jon NunnallyLooking for a left-handed power bat off the bench the Mets acquired Jon Nunnally from the Boston Red Sox in exchange for Jermaine Allensworth prior to the 2000 season.  At the time Nunnally was a journeyman outfielder who at times showed potential but could never really get his career off the ground.  He made his Met debut on Opening Day 2000 where he went 1 for 2.  Unfortunately, from that point Nunnally struggled and could never find any consistency at the plate.  With his average on the interstate at .189 the Mets sold his contract to the Orix Buffaloes of the Japanese League on June 8th.  Nunnally returned to the states in 2001 but never made it back to the Majors as he bounced around the minors before finally retiring after the 2006 season. 

In 48 games for the Mets Nunnally batted .189 with 2 home runs and 6 RBIs.   

While with the Mets Nunnally wore number 26.

Jon Nunnally also played for the following teams:
Kansas City Royals – 1995-1997
Cincinnati Reds – 1997,1998
Boston Red Sox – 1999

Todd Zeile – His New York Mets Career 2000,2001,2004

Todd ZeileOver the course of his 16-year career Todd Zeile played for 11 different teams including two stints with the Mets.   When the Mets initially signed Todd Zeile prior to the 2000 season it came as a surprise to many not because he wasn’t a solid major league player but because he was signed to play first base to replace the departed John Olerud.  The problem was that Todd Zeile was not a first baseman.  He had played sporadically at the position during his career but played mainly third base after starting his career at catcher.    Nevertheless, Zeile proved to be a steady defensive first baseman, not flashy but got the job done, while putting up solid offensive numbers.  In his first year in New York Zeile hit .268 with 22 home runs and 79 RBIs, including a 13-game hitting streak in June, and helped the Mets reach the World Series for the first time since 1986.

In the postseason Zeile had a horrendous NLDS against the San Francisco Giants, he hit just .071.  However, in the NLCS against the St. Louis Cardinals he caught fire.  He hit .368 with a home run while driving in a team best eight runs as the Mets defeated the Cardinals in five games.  His eight RBIs were the most by a Met player in postseason series in franchise history.

He continued his hot hitting in the World Series against the Yankees.  Zeile hit .400 but only drove in 1 run as the Mets lost the series in five games. In game one Todd Zeile hit what appeared to be a two-run home run that would have given the Mets an early lead, but the ball bounced off the top of the wall, though replays showed it might have been interfered with by a fan.  Zeile was only credited with a double and base runner Timo Perez was thrown out at the plate.  Instead of being up 2-0, the game remained scoreless and the rest as they say is history.

Zeile returned for the 2001 season, but his power numbers dipped dramatically. He hit only 10 home runs while driving in 62 and led the team in strikeouts with 102 as the Mets struggled for most of the season.  Based in large part to his power deficiency the Mets decided to trade Zeile to the Colorado Rockies in the off-season along with Benny Agbayani in exchange for Alex Ochoa, Ross Glad and Craig House.

Zeile would play one season in Colorado before moving on to play for the Yankees and Expos in 2003.  The Mets than decided to give Zeile another chance and signed him as a free agent prior to the 2004 season, in what proved to be his last season as a player.  Zeile played in 137 games in 2004 but hit just .233 with 9 home runs and 33 RBIs as the Mets suffered through a terrible season.  However, Zeile did manage to reach a significant milestone in his final season by recording his 2000th career hit.  In his last game as a professional on October 3rd, the last game of the season, the Mets allowed Zeile to play one final game as a catcher.  In his last at bat of his career, he hit a three-run home run.

In three seasons with the Mets Zeile appeared in 441 games and hit .259 with 41 home runs and 176 RBIs.

While with the Mets Zeile wore number 9 in 2000 and 2001 and number 27 in 2004.

Todd Zeile also played for the following teams:
St. Louis Cardinals – 1989-1995
Chicago Cubs – 1995
Baltimore Orioles – 1996
Philadelphia Phillies – 1996
Los Angeles Dodgers – 1997,1998
Texas Rangers – 1998,1999
Florida Marlins – 1998
Colorado Rockies – 2002
New York Yankees – 2003
Montreal Expos – 2003

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David Lamb – His New York Mets Career 2000

Utility infielder David Lamb was claimed off waivers by the Mets from the Tampa Bay Devil Rays prior to the 2000 season.  After starting the year with the Norfolk Tide, Lamb was promoted to the big club in July.  He made his Mets debut on July 5 as pinch hitter for Melvin Mora, for the record he struck out.  Lamb would appear in six more games for the Mets mainly as a defensive replacement before being sent back down to the minors at the end of July where he spent the remainder of the season.  Lamb did start one game during his brief tenure with the Mets on July 18 against the Toronto Blue Jays.  It was during this game where Lamb recorded his only hit with the Mets.

In seven games for the Mets Lamb batted .200 (1 for 5).  Following the season, he signed with the Anaheim Angels as a free agent.

While with the Mets Lamb wore number 26.

David Lamb also played for the following teams:
Tampa Bay Devil Rays – 1999
Minnesota Twins – 2002

 

 

 

 

 

Kurt Abbott – His New York Mets Career 2000

TKurt Abbotthe Mets signed utility player Kurt Abbott as a free agent prior the 2000 season.   Abbott, a seven year veteran, made his Mets debut on April 5, 2000 pinch hitting for pitcher Rich Rodriguez.  After popping up to shortstop, Abbott remained in the game playing centerfield and doubled during his second at bat.

Abbott’s time with the Mets very uneventful.  He would go on to appear in 79 games for the Mets, playing primarily shortstop.  He batted .217 with 6 home runs and 12 RBIs.   During the postseason, he went 1 for 13.  His only hit coming off of Andy Pettite during game 5 of the World Series.

2000 would be Abbott’s only season with the Mets. He was granted free agency and signed with the Atlanta Braves prior to the 2001 season, his last in the majors.

While with the Mets Abbott wore number 20.

Kurt Abbott also played for the following teams:
Oakland A’s – 1993,1998
Florida Marlins – 1994-1997
Colorado Rockies – 1998,1999
Atlanta Braves – 2001

Edgardo Alfonzo – His New York Mets Career 1995-2002

Edgardo AlfonzoEdgardo Alfonzo made his Major League debut with the Mets on April 26, 1995 and would go on to play eight seasons with the team becoming one of the most popular players in team history as evidenced by his being voted the greatest 2nd baseman in Mets history by the fans as part of their 40th Anniversary Celebration.

After two good yet unspectacular seasons in 1995 and 1996 Alfonzo broke out in 1997 hitting a team best .315.  But his best season with the Mets came in 1999 when he established himself as one of the top hitters in the game.  He hit 27 home runs and drove in 108 while helping the Mets reach the postseason for the first time since 1988.  He also set the Mets single season record for runs scored with 123.   On August 30th against the Houston Astros Alfonzo had a career day by becoming the first player and to date the only player in franchise history to go 6 for 6 in a game.  He hit three home runs and drove in five and became the first player since the legendary Ty Cobb to go 6 for 6 with three home runs in a game.

In 1999 Edgardo Alfonzo also established himself as one of the games best defensive players. After playing most of his career at 3rd base Alfonzo moved to 2nd base and committed just five errors for a .993 fielding percentage. Many believe he should have won the gold glove but he was beaten out by Pokey Reese of the Reds.

In order for the Mets to make the postseason in 1999 the Mets were forced to play a one game playoff against the Cincinnati Reds.  Alfonzo hit a two run home run in the first inning of the game which proved to be all the runs the Mets needed as they went on to win 5-0.

Alfonzo continued his hot hitting in his first postseason game against the Arizona Diamondback hitting two home runs including a grand slam while driving in five runs.  In all he hit three home runs and drove in six in helping the Mets defeat the Diamondbacks in the NLDS.  He continued his great hitting in the NLCS against the Atlanta Braves with another home run and five RBI’s but the Mets lost to the Braves in six games.

In 2000 he continued his stellar play and earned his first All-Star selection by hitting a career best .324 with 25 home runs and 94 RBI’s in helping the Mets reach the World Series for the first time since 1986.

Alfonzo’s production started to suffer in 2001 and 2002, due in large part to back problems and the Mets let him walk as a free agent following the 2002 season much to the chagrin of many Mets fans including this one.  But it turned out to be the right move as his production continued to decline. 

Edgardo Alfonzo did try to make a comeback with the Mets in 2006 signing with their Triple A affiliate the Norfolk Tides but the bid fell short and Alfonzo never made it back to the big leagues. 

In his eight seasons with the Mets Alfonzo hit .292 with 120 home runs and 538 RBI’s in 1086 games.

In 24 postseason games Alfonzo hit .240 with 4 home runs and 17 RBI’s.

While with the Mets Edgardo Alfonzo wore number 13 in tribute to his fellow countryman Dave Concepcion from Valenzuela.

Edgardo Alfonzo also played for the following teams:
San Francisco Giants – 2003-2005
Los Angeles Angels – 2006
Toronto Blue Jays – 2006

 

Ryan McGuire – His New York Mets Career 2000

Ryan McGuire who had hit .220 over three seasons with the Montreal Expos was signed by the Mets as a free agent on December 13,1999.  He started the season playing for the Norfolk Tides, the Mets Triple A affiliate, before being called up to New York on June 4, 2000.  He made his Met debut against the Tampa Bay Devil Rays as the starting right fielder.  After walking in his first at bat, he went 0-2 and was pulled from the game.  It would be McGuire’s only appearance in Met uniform. The next day he was shipped back to Norfolk where he finished the season. 

With the Norfolk Tides, McGuire hit a very healthy .298 with 10 home runs and 62 RBIs but the Mets decided to cut ties with him and following the season and he signed with the Florida Marlin as a free agent. 

 While with the Mets McGuire wore number 40.

Ryan McGuire also played for the following teams:
Montreal Expos – 1997-1999
Florida Marlins – 2001
Baltimore Orioles – 2002

Jim Mann – His New York Mets Career 2000

jim-mannRight-handed pitcher Jim Mann was a career minor leaguer when the Mets acquired him from the Toronto Blue Jays prior to the 2000 season.  Mann started out the 2000 season pitching for the Mets Triple A affiliate the Norfolk Tides before getting the call he had been waiting for his entire life.  He joined the Mets at the end of May and made his Major League debut on May 29, 2000 against the Los Angeles Dodgers.  He pitched 2/3 innings and allowed 2 hits in the Mets 4-1 loss.  He was farmed back to the minors a few days later only to return in July.  He made his second big league appearance on July 2 against the Atlanta Braves and allowed 3 runs and 4 hits over 2 innings of relief.  It would be his last appearance in a Met uniform as he was shipped back to the minors where he finished out the season.  Following the season Mann signed as a free agent with the Houston Astros. 

In two relief appearances for the Mets Jim Man posted in a 10.13 ERA in 2 2/3 innings.

While with the Mets Mann wore number 39.

Jim Mann also played for the following teams:
Houston Astros – 2001,2002
Pittsburgh Pirates – 2003

Eric Cammack – His New York Mets Career 2000

eric-cammackAfter being drafted in the 13th round of the 1997 free agent draft, right-handed pitcher Eric Cammack spent three seasons in the minors before making his Major League debut on April 28, 2000.  His debut did not go well, he surrendered 4 runs in 2 innings in the Mets 12-5 loss to the Colorado Rockies.

Riding the shuttle between New York and Norfolk, VA were the Mets top minor league club was located Cammack appeared in 8 games for the Mets posting 6.30 ERA in 10 innings with no decisions and no saves.

2000 would be Cammack’s only season in the majors, he spent three more seasons in the Mets minor league system before the Mets released him on May 30, 2003.

While with the Mets Cammack wore number 29.