Man, the 1981 Mets Were Horrible

Mets PoliceSenior Analyst IMarch 1, 2009

I’ve attempted to teach my young co-workers about the history of the New York Mets and they know so little.

One 24-year-old talked about "Davey Anderson" the manager. That's how long it has been since we've had a trophy in Flushing.

Thee are full-fledged adults with no recollection of “Doc and Friends.”

I was trying to explain just how bad the 1981 Mets were, so I looked up the numbers on Baseball Reference.

1981 was a weird year with two half-seasons, and a long strike in the middle. For the numbers you'll need to add about a third to compare them to anything, but the averages speak for themselves.

1B-Dave Kingman

.221 and 22 home runs is all I have to say. 22 homers got him a whopping 59 RBI. He would hit them high up the scoreboard. Fans called him “Kong.” He wanted us to call him “Sky King.”

He might as well have asked us to call him the “Home Run Fairy,” and it would have sounded less corny. This one-dimensional and grump player struck out 105 times, which would be around 200 compared to today’s standards.

2B-Doug Flynn

Flynn sounded like an awesome player. He came over in the Tom Seaver deal. He must’ve been good. Oh wait, never mind. He batted .222.

SS-Frank Tavares

Tavares hit .230. We're already three starters deep and the best guy hit .230. Think about that

3B-Hubie Brooks

It was always "Hubie and Mookie" in those days. Hubie was a star in Montreal, not so much with the Mets, but he did hit .307 with four home runs so don't blame Hubie.

LF-Lee Mazzilli

Mets Police readers know I love my Lee. Lee hit the second most homers on the team with six. That wasn't a typo. Six. “Sky King” hit 22 and Lee hit six. He also hit .228!   

That the Mets were able to turn Mazzilli into Ron Darling and eventually Howard Johnson shows that general manager Frank Cashen was a little smarter than Steve Phillips.

CF-Mookie Wilson

Mookie hit .271. Don't blame him.

RF-Pick Someone.   

Right field is a toss-up, but for sake of argument let's call it Joel Youngblood who was the Mets’ All-Star representative that year hitting .350 in 43 games.

C-John Stearns

The always hurt John Stearns got in 80 games and batted .271.


Mike Scott before he learned how to cheat. This Mike Scott was 5-10.  Pat Zachry, for whom you lost Seaver, went 7-14. Randy Jones who had a good career elsewhere pitched to a 1-8 record.

Ed Lynch turned a 2.71 ERA into four wins. Neil Allen saved 18 games and would soon get the team Keith Hernandez.

The leader of this mess was Joe Torre. Torre’s less of a genius when people hit .230 or less for him.

These kids with their September collapses don't know how good they have it.