1969 New York Mets
1969 New York Mets / Franchise: New York Mets / BR Team Page
World Series Champs
Managed by Gil Hodges
The 1969 New York Mets were deep in pitching talent, with Tom Seaver (25-7, 2.21) and Jerry Koosman (17-9, 2.28) spearheading the staff, along with hard-throwing rookie Craig Gentry; Nolan Ryan was also around, although he would only emerge as a superstar a few years later. Their offense wasn't as potent as that of the Atlanta Braves, with Tommie Agee leading the charge with 26 home runs and 76 RBIs. The Mets had a tougher time winning the division. As late as September 2nd, the Mets were 5 games behind the Chicago Cubs. But then, starting on September 3rd, the Cubs lost 11 of 12 games, while the Mets won 11 of 13, vaulting the young club to a 4 1/2 game lead that they wouldn't give up and would only make bigger. The Mets won the division by eight games. They then swept the Braves in three games in the 1969 NLCS and surprised all observers by defeating the heavily-favored Baltimore Orioles in five games in the 1969 World Series. The heroes were Seaver, Koosman, Gentry and Ryan, who all pitched well, but also 1B Donn Clendenon, the World Series MVP, and back-up 2B Al Weis, who hit key homers, and OF Ron Swoboda, who made one of the greatest catches ever in right field.
The Mets had been sad sacks and laughing stocks for their entire existence until the 1969 season, finishing well below .500 every year, until they suddenly became good. It was so unexpected that the team has ever since been known as the "Miracle Mets".
"My last miracle was the '69 Mets", George Burns (as God) to John Denver in Oh God ! (1978)
Awards and Honors
- All-Stars: Cleon Jones, Jerry Koosman and Tom Seaver
- NL Cy Young Award: Tom Seaver
- NL Comeback Player of the Year: Tommie Agee
- Manager of the Year Award: Gil Hodges
- Stanley Cohen: A Magic Summer: The Amazin' Story of the 1969 New York Mets, Skyhorse Publishing, New York, NY, 2009 (originally published in 1989).
- Norm King: "Bienvenue to Major League Baseball; April 8, 1969: Montreal Expos 11, New York Mets 10 At Shea Stadium", in Norm King, ed.: Au jeu/Play Ball: The 50 Greatest Games in the History of the Montreal Expos, SABR, Phoenix, AZ, 2016, pp. 4-6. ISBN 978-1-943816-15-6
- Tom Seaver and Richard Schaap: The Perfect Game: Tom Seaver and the Mets, Dutton Books, New York, NY, 1970.
- Matthew Silverman and Ken Samelson, ed.: The Miracle Has Landed: The Amazin' Story of How the 1969 Mets Shocked the World, Maple Street Press, Hanover, MA, 2009.
- Mort Zachter: "If Gil Hodges Managed the Cubs and Leo Durocher the Mets in 1969, Whose “Miracle” Would it Have Been?", in Stuart Shea, ed.: North Side, South Side, All Around Town, The National Pastime, SABR, 2015. ISBN 978-1-93359987-8