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1999 New York Mets season

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Start date  1999
Manager  Bobby Valentine
Local radios  WFAN, WADO
General manager  Steve Phillips
Owner  Fred Wilpon
1999 New York Mets season httpsiytimgcomviWTA0d95UWJMhqdefaultjpg
Local television  WPIX-TV/Fox Sports New York (Ralph Kiner, Tom Seaver, Fran Healy, Howie Rose, Gary Thorne)
Similar  2000 New York Mets season, 1997 New York Mets season, 1996 New York Mets season, 1993 New York Mets season, 1990 New York Mets season

The New York Mets' 1999 season was the 38th regular season for the Mets. They went 97-66 and finished 2nd in the NL East but won the NL Wild Card by beating the Cincinnati Reds in a one-game playoff. The Mets advanced to the National League Championship Series, where they were defested by the Atlanta Braves.

Contents

The Mets were managed by Bobby Valentine, who entered his fourth year as skipper. They played home games at Shea Stadium.

Offseason

  • November 11, 1998: Bobby Bonilla was traded by the Los Angeles Dodgers to the New York Mets for Mel Rojas.
  • December 1, 1998: Todd Hundley was traded by the New York Mets with Arnold Gooch (minors) to the Los Angeles Dodgers for Roger Cedeño and Charles Johnson.
  • December 1, 1998: Charles Johnson was traded by the New York Mets to the Baltimore Orioles for Armando Benítez.
  • December 1, 1998: Robin Ventura was signed as a Free Agent with the New York Mets.
  • December 16, 1998: Rickey Henderson signed as a Free Agent with the New York Mets.
  • December 18, 1998: Josías Manzanillo was signed as a Free Agent with the New York Mets.
  • Regular season

    The Mets' 97 victories were their highest total since they won 100 games in 1988. They were led offensively by catcher Mike Piazza, who compiled a .303 average with 40 home runs and 124 RBI in his first full season with the team. New third baseman Robin Ventura put together a .301 average, 32 home runs, and 120 RBI while second baseman Edgardo Alfonzo hit .304 with 27 home runs and 108 RBI. First baseman John Olerud continued his consistent hitting, hitting .298 with 96 RBI, his third straight year with 90 or more runs driven in. Offseason acquisitions Roger Cedeno and Rickey Henderson recorded the two highest batting averages on the squad at .315 and .313 respectively. Benny Agbayani, a semi-regular outfielder who got more playing time as the year progressed, contributed 14 home runs.

    The Mets' pitching staff was again led by Al Leiter with 13 wins. Orel Hershiser matched that total, with Masato Yoshii recording 12 wins and Rick Reed 11. Rookie Octavio Dotel went 8-3 in fourteen starts, and late season acquisition Kenny Rogers won five of six decisions while leading the team in complete games. The rotation was not as strong as keeping runs off the board; the team's four main starters recorded ERAs above 4.00.

    The offseason acquisition of Armando Benitez from the Baltimore Orioles ended John Franco's tenure as the team's closer. Franco did manage to record nineteen saves and broke the Major League Baseball record for saves by a lefthander, but Benitez' 1.85 ERA and twenty-two saves ensured the closer role would be his for the foreseeable future.

    Mercury Mets

    As part of the now-infamous Turn Ahead the Clock promotion the Mets changed their name to the "Mercury Mets" while hosting the Pittsburgh Pirates on July 27, 1999.

    Opening Day starters

  • Edgardo Alfonzo
  • Bobby Bonilla
  • Rickey Henderson
  • Al Leiter
  • Brian McRae
  • John Olerud
  • Rey Ordóñez
  • Mike Piazza
  • Robin Ventura
  • Notable transactions

  • July 31, 1999: Brian McRae was traded by the New York Mets with Thomas Johnson (minors) and Rigo Beltrán to the Colorado Rockies for Darryl Hamilton and Chuck McElroy.
  • July 31, 1999: Jason Isringhausen was traded by the New York Mets with Greg McMichael to the Oakland Athletics for Billy Taylor.
  • Starters by position

    Note: Pos = position; G = Games played; AB = At Bats; H = Hits; Avg. = Batting Average; HR = Home Runs; RBI = Runs Batted In

    NLDS

    New York wins series, 3-1

    Game 1

    October 12: Turner Field, Atlanta

    Game 2

    October 13: Turner Field, Atlanta

    Game 3

    October 15: Shea Stadium, Flushing, New York

    Game 4

    October 16: Shea Stadium, Flushing, New York

    Game 5

    October 17: Shea Stadium, Flushing, New York

  • In the bottom of the 15th inning, the Mets managed to load the bases against Braves relief pitcher Kevin McGlinchy. Mets catcher Todd Pratt drew a bases loaded walk, tying the score at 3-3.
  • The next batter was Mets third baseman Robin Ventura. Ventura crushed the 2-1 pitch over the wall in right-center for a grand slam, winning the game for the Mets and driving the Mets players and fans into a frenzied celebration. Ventura, however, never reached second base as Todd Pratt, the runner who was on first, picked him up in celebration. Subsequently, Ventura was mobbed by his teammates, never finishing his trot around the bases. Because he failed to touch all four bases, the hit was officially scored a single. Roger Cedeño, the runner on third at the time, was ruled the only runner to have crossed home plate before the on-field celebration began and the Mets were awarded a 4-3 victory. Thus, Ventura was only credited with a single and one RBI. This play is now referred to as the grand slam single.
  • Game 6

    October 19: Turner Field, Atlanta

    Farm system

    LEAGUE CHAMPIONS: GCL Mets

    References

    1999 New York Mets season Wikipedia


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