There are certain players who will always give Mets fans agita whenever they hear their name. To be honest, there are probably too many of those to count. But one definitely on that list is Jed Lowrie.
The infielder and 14-year MLB veteran is officially retiring from the game, as Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports. Lowrie had himself a solid big-league career. Across 1,300 games, he hit .257/.330/.406 with 121 home runs, 594 RBI, and 590 runs scored.
Despite being part of the Mets organization for two years from 2019-20, Lowrie didn’t record a single one of his 1,185 career hits in Flushing. In fact, he only suited up for nine games as a Met, accruing eight plate appearances in the process.
It’s easy to call him a free-agent bust. After all, the dude barely played during the life of his two-year, $20 million contract. But as is usually the case with the old version of the Mets, the Wilpons had something to do with it.
When New York signed Lowrie ahead of 2019, he was coming off one of his best overall seasons in the big leagues. He produced career-high marks in home runs (23) and RBI (99) while producing a .801 OPS, appearing in the All-Star Game, and finishing 20th in AL MVP voting.
Once this signing became official, former general manager Brodie Van Wagenen directed his infamous “Come get us” line to the rest of the National League East. Things went downhill from there.
Lowrie sprained his knee during spring training in Port St. Lucie, which ended up being an injury that hindered him all year. That offseason, Lowrie wanted to get knee surgery to correct whatever was going wrong. Naturally, the Mets — read: the Wilpons — wouldn’t allow that to happen.
Lowrie then sat out the 60-game pandemic-shortened season to complete his Mets tenure. His big-league career finished with two years in Oakland with the Athletics. This past season wasn’t great (.508 OPS in 50 games), but his 2021 campaign wasn’t bad. The infielder hit .245/.318/.398 with 14 homers and 69 RBI in 139 games played.
None of that will jump off the page. But for a 37-year-old middle infielder who essentially hadn’t played the two years prior, this performance was pretty great.
It’s good to see Lowrie end his career on his own terms. Few players get a chance to do that. While it probably wasn’t exactly how he planned it, at least he got to play instead of essentially getting forced to the sidelines by the Wilpons.
He may only have had a handful of plate appearances in Flushing, but you know the people over at Mets Legends will honor him in some way.
Matt Musico can be reached at [email protected] and you can follow him on Twitter: @mmusico8.