Who were the best Mets players between 1991-2000?
As we continue waiting for MLB to get a new CBA signed, we’re taking time to look back at the best players in each decade for the New York Mets.
In this series we’re looking back at the top ten players ranked by their WAR (per Baseball Reference). Thus far, we have looked back at the top ten Mets from the following decades:
Now, let’s take a trip back to the 1990s.
Edgardo Alfonzo – 23.1 (1995-00)
Alfonzo was a really good player on some Mets teams that didn’t quite have enough around him. He made his debut in his age-21 season in 1995. During this decade, Alfonzo slashed .296/.370/.450 and won a Silver Slugger in 1999 when he drove in a career-high 107 runs. His only All-Star Game appearance was in 2000.
John Olerud – 17.3 (1997-99)
Olerud was terrific in his three seasons with the Mets. He slashed .315/.425/.501 and drove in 291 runs in 476 games with the club. The 142 OPS+ he had with the Mets was the highest of any team he played for during his underrated career.
Mike Piazza – 14.8 (1998-00)
To say 1998 was a weird year for Piazza was an understatement. The Mets acquired him from the Marlins eight days after his blockbuster trade out of LA; New York sent for Geoff Goetz, Preston Wilson and Ed Yarnall to the Marlins in the deal. He won a Silver Slugger in 1999 and 2000.
Al Leiter – 14.0 (1998-00)
Between 1998 and 2000, Leiter was 46-26 with an ERA+ of 131. He made is lone All-Star Game appearance with the Mets in 2000 when he posted a 16-8 record with 200 strikeouts in 208 innings.
Rick Reed – 13.5 (1997-00)
Reed was a workhorse in the four seasons for the Mets in this decade. He was 51-30 in 120 games (118 starts) with 491 strikeouts in 754 innings. He represented the Mets in the 1998 All-Star Game, the season in which he threw a career-high 212.1 innings and won a career-best 16 games.
Bret Saberhagen – 11.6 (1992-95)
Overall, the Saberhagen experience wasn’t what Mets fans had hoped for when he left Kansas City. But in 1994 he was marvelous, posting a 14-4 record and finishing third in Cy Young Award voting.
Bernard Gilkey – 10.3 (1996-98)
Gilkey’s first season in New York, 1996, was a huge success. He slashed .317/.393/.562 with career-bests of 30 homers and 117 RBI. But the production didn’t last; he hit only 18 jacks the following season and four the following season before he was shipped to Arizona.
Sid Fernandez – 10.3 (1991-93)
The final three seasons of Fernandez’s tenure with the Mets were mixed. He was 20-20 overall with 305 strikeouts in 378.1 innings, but most of that came in 1992 when he started 32 games and won 14 times.
Bobby Jones – 9.8 (1993-00)
Jones’ best season came in 1997 when the 27-year-old played in his only All-Star Game and won a career-high 15 games. He was 74-46 in 193 games over eight seasons with the Mets.
Todd Hundley – 9.6 (1991-98)
Everyone remembers Hundley’s incredible 1996 season in which he hit 41 home runs and drove in 112. He was an All-Star for the Mets in 1996 and 1997 and was an offensive force, but injuries limited his play; he appeared in more than 91 games only four times in eight years with the team.