Ranking the New York Mets Fans' Most Despised Opponents of All Time

Nathan TesslerCorrespondent IApril 18, 2013

Ranking the New York Mets Fans' Most Despised Opponents of All Time

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    Over the past decades, many players have outperformed their usual career stats to shine against the New York Mets.

    For years, the Mets have been tortured by players that they simply cannot find a way to stop. Some of these players are surefire Hall of Famers, while some are journeymen who repeatedly overachieve against the lowly Mets.

    And as these players continue to baffle Mets hitters and pitchers, fans grow more and more angry toward these opponents. 

    There are also players on this list who have gotten into altercations with Mets players, thus incurring the wrath of Mets fans.

    Here are the top five most despised Mets opponents of all time:

5) Gary Carter

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    Many Mets fans remember Gary Carter for his 5-year career with the Mets. But before being traded to the Mets, Carter had a superb 12-year career with the Montreal Expos.

    With the Expos, Carter was also one of the most hated opponents for the Mets.

    Carter was talented, played hard, and most frustratingly he was incredibly cocky.

    As former Met Keith Hernandez stated in a New York Times article, “We all disliked Gary when we played against him. He was just a little rah-rah varsity collegiate type, even though he didn’t go to college.” 

    In 168 starts against the Mets, Carter hit .300 with 33 doubles, four triples, 26 home runs and 94 RBI.

    But once Carter got traded to the Mets, his attitude endeared himself with fans and he became one of the most beloved players in Mets history.

4) Pat Burrell

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    Pat Burrell had a solid 12-year career, primarily with the bitter rival Philadelphia Phillies.

    Over his career, Burrell became one of the biggest Mets killers in history.

    Although he averaged only 24.3 home runs per season in his career, Burrell hit 42 home runs in 162 games against the Mets. In 2002, Burrell hit .373 with seven doubles, seven home runs, 19 RBI and a .791 slugging percentage in 19 games against the Mets. 

    Mets fans were constantly tortured by Burrell’s big-play ability. Thus, Burrell was hated by Mets fans over his 9-year career with the Phillies. 

    He is a no-brainer in this list.

3) Chipper Jones

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    Chipper Jones named his son Shea, based on his knack for dominating the Mets and their former home stadium.

    That should tell you all you need to know about the Mets’ relationship with Chipper.

    He tortured Mets fans over his illustrious 20-year career with the Atlanta Braves. He was an 8-time All-Star and 1999 NL MVP, hitting .319 with 41 doubles, 45 home runs and 110 RBI.

    Over his career, the lowly Mets rank first in almost every offensive category against Chipper, including home runs and stolen bases. 

    At Shea Stadium, Chipper hit .313 with 20 doubles, 19 home runs, 55 RBI and 12 stolen bases. Over a 162-game season, those numbers would translate to 37 doubles, 35 home runs, 101 RBI and 22 stolen bases.

    Even more, in Chipper’s huge 1999 season, the Braves won a series at Shea Stadium against the Mets in late September. That all but doomed the Mets playoff hopes.

    After the series, Chipper stated, “Now all the Mets’ fans can go home and put their Yankees stuff on.”

    Chipper only said it because he saw a heckling fan wearing a split hat and split jersey, half Yankees and half Mets. Regardless, Mets fans took the quote personally and Chipper became the player they love to hate.

    But since that event went down, Chipper has matured into one of the most well-respected players in baseball, even to bitter Mets fans.

    Chipper will go down as one of the best third baseman and switch hitters in history. But he may also be the most hated opponent of all time for Mets fans.

2) Roger Clemens

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    When you start a big rivalry and throw a broken bat at Mike Piazza, one of the most popular players to ever play with the Mets, you cast yourself as public enemy No. 1.

    Months before the bat throwing incident in the World Series, Roger Clemens also beaned Piazza in the head. Clemens claimed he was trying to brush Piazza off the plate, but Piazza said that Clemens has pinpoint control and the incident was intentional. 

    Even more, Clemens called the Mets dugout to apologize. Piazza grabbed the phone and threw it and said, “Tell him to go **** himself.”

    Ironically, Clemens struggled greatly against the Mets, especially for his standards. In 11 career starts, Clemens is 3-6 with a 4.89 ERA, 1.27 WHIP and 73 hits allowed in 70.0 innings. 

    Clemens has been one of the greatest and most controversial players in baseball history. After his scandalous career and rivalry with Piazza, he is also one of the most hated players the Mets have ever faced.

1) John Rocker

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    This one is a no-brainer.

    After John Rocker’s eye-opening Sports Illustrated article in 2000, he has been accused of being many things, including a sexist, racist and homophobe.

    Furthermore, the former Braves closer has a special relationship with Mets fans, who he openly despises. Rocker called out Mets fans, as well as New York as a whole. He spat at fans, gave them the finger, and even taunted them during batting practice. 

    Mets fans are not entirely innocent, though.

    Mets fans have dumped beer on his girlfriend, yelled sexual suggestions about him and his family, and thrown many objects at Rocker including bottles, quarters and batteries. Not to mention the raucous heckling Rocker received every time he stepped on the mound at Shea Stadium. 

    No one has had a more acrimonious relationship with an opposing team than Rocker and the Mets.

    Rocker hates Mets fans and Mets fans hate Rocker.

    There is no question that the most despised Mets opponent of all time is John Rocker.

Honorable Mention

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    Willie Stargell; recorded first hit ever at Shea Stadium. Went on to hit a record 60 home runs and 182 RBI against the Mets, including an unbelievable 41 game-winning RBI. Received plaque in final game at Shea Stadium, so too much respect for his play for him to make list.

    Jimmy Rollins; one of the least popular players for a long time on the bitter rival Phillies. In over 200 games against the Mets, he hit .284 with 45 doubles, 10 triples, 26 home runs, 58 stolen bases and 125 runs.

    Yadier Molina; one-trick pony, but what a devastating play it was. Hit 9th-inning two-run home run against Mets in Game 7 of the 2006 NLCS to put St. Louis Cardinals into World Series with 3-1 victory.

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