Jan 16, 2017

Former Member of Two Mets Pennant Seasons Who Never Got To Play in the Post Season: Jim Gosger (1969 / 1973-1974)

James Charles Gosger was born November 6, 1942 in Port Huron, Michigan. Gosger was a left handed hitting scrappy outfielder who got signed by the Boston Red Sox as an amateur free agent in 1962. He hit 19 HRs with the low level minor league Winston/Salem club getting a cup of coffee with the ’63 Red Sox team.

In 1965 he hit 14 HRs & batted .299 with AAA Toronto making it to Fenway Park with the Red Sox again by the summer. That summer he drove in ten runs in a minor league game as a team mate of his friend Tony Perez.

After going 0-5 in his first game he hit HRs in the next two games, driving in 15 runs in 22 games that July. Gosger did well as he hit 9 HRs with 15 doubles in 324 at bats batting .256 in 81 games with Boston that year. He was fortunate enough to have Ted Williams as his hitting instructor while with Boston.

In June of 1966 he was traded along with future Met Ken Sanders to the Kansas City A’s where he would play for the the next three seasons. In 1968 moved with Cahrlie Finley's ball club to Oakland, where he saw playing time in 88 games hitting just .180. The A's were getting good on their way to the dominating Dynasty they had in the early seventies & Gosger wasn't in their plans. That winter he was chosen by the Seattle Pilots in the expansion draft as the 55th overall pick.

He was an original Seattle Pilot in the team's only year of existence 1969, getting some mention for muttering the word "yea sure" in Jim Bouton’s famous baseball book Ball Four. His time was brief in Seattle, batting just .109 with one HR & one RBI after 38 games. He then found himself traded from a last place club to a surprising winning young New York Mets team, in exchange for Greg Goossen in early July. At that point the Mets were surging still four games behind the Chicago Cubs.

He was sent to AAA Tidewater where he hit .341 with a .423 on base %, bashing 10 HRs & 31 RBIs playing outfield in 58 games. He impressed the organization enough to get a September call up to the 1969 Amazing Mets.

He debuted at Shea Stadium on September 7th in a game against the Philadelphia Phillies as a pinch hitter. On September 12th, he played in both ends of a historic double header at Forbes Field in Pittsburgh, in which the Mets won both games 1-0 with the winning pitcher (Jerry Koosman & then Don Cardwell) driving in the runs in each game.
 In the nightcap Gosger doubles, the win put New York two games up in first place.

He would play in just ten games as a ’69 Met, batting .133 (2-15) hitting two doubles. On September 29th he drove in his only Mets run in a 2-0 Mets win, where Gary Gentry tossed a four hit shutout against the Phillies. Gosger did not make the post season roster but earned $100.

After the Mets won the 1969 World Series they sent Gosger & Bobby Heise to the San Francisco Giants for pitcher Ray Sadecki & outfielder Dave Marshall. Gosger appeared on 1970 Giants baseball card but he never played for them, as he had his contract purchased by the Montreal Expos in early April 1970. He had a decent season in Montreal batting .263 with 5 HRs 11 doubles & 37 RBIs in 91 games.

Trivia: In a game against his old Mets team mates he was sent to pinch hit against the hard throwing Nolan Ryan. He swung at the first two pitches & let the third strike go right by him. When his manager Gene Mauch asked him why he didn't swing he said " I didn't see it".

In 1971 he hit just .157 in 51 games & was traded back to the Mets in December for four minor leaguers. He spent the 1972 season at AAA Tidewater batting .244.

In 1973 he was brought up to an injured Mets squad in early May playing left field for an injured Cleon Jones. He got two hits against the Cincinnati Reds in his Mets return on May 3rd and then reached base on three walks the next day. Over the next two weeks he would drive in seven runs helping the team to victories in four of those games.

On May 11th he broke a 2-2 tie against the Pittsburgh Pirates when he singled off Doc Ellis to drive in Cleon Jones. He remained on the roster until early July batting .239 with ten RBIs. He found himself back at AAA Tidewater the rest of the year as the Mets won the 1973 pennant.

For the second time in four years he was part of the Mets minor leagues, having played a part in two pennant seasons although he was not with the club during the post season. After batting .268 at AAA Tidewater in 1974 he was called up to the Mets on August 3rd. He played in 26 games for the fifth place '74 Mets but only hit .091 (3-33).

Gosger finished off his ten season career batting .226 with 411 hits 30 HRs 67 doubles 16 triples 177 RBIs & a .309 on base %.

Retirement: After the Mets released him in 1974, Joe McDonald asked him if he wanted to be a batting instructor at AAA Tidewater. He thought it was a great idea, the problem was the Mets never called him for the job. After baseball he has been a high school football & basket ball referee. He has also done college basketball & baseball as well.

Family: Gosger has been married twice & has five children.

Original 1962 Mets Third Baseman: Don Zimmer (1962)

Donald William Zimmer was born on January 17, 1931 in Western Hills, Ohio and went to the same high school Pete Rose would go to in Cincinnati. Zimmer was an infielder earning the nickname Popeye, getting signed by the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1949.

In the minors while playing at Elmira, he got married at home plate before a game to his wife Jean Soot. 

In 1953 he was leading the American Association with 23 HRs & 63 RBIs in July when he was hit in the head with a pitch striking his temple and was seriously injured. He was in & out of consciousness for a week, lost vision, then had to have holes drilled in his skull to relieve the swelling. 

He was told he was finished in baseball, that playing was too dangerous. But the stubborn Zimmer wouldn’t accept that & made a remarkable comeback.

He was brought up to the Brooklyn Doders club in July of 1954 as a utility infielder, behind the talents of Pee Wee Reese, Jackie Robinson & Jim Gilliam. In his first game he hit a triple to start out his career, batting .182 in 33 at bats on the year.

Zimmer was a member of the legendary Brooklyn Dodgers 1955 Boys of Summer World Championship team. He played well enough to see action in 84 games, batting .239 showing some good power with 15 HRs 10 doubles & 50 RBIs in just 280 at bats.

Post Season: In Game #1 of the 1955 World Series, he drove in two runs with a single & sac fly off Whitey Ford, although Brooklyn lost 6-5. Overall he played in four of the seven games, going 2-9.

In 1956 he was hitting .300 until a June game against the Cincinnati Reds ended his season. He was hit in the face with a fast ball from pitcher Hal Jeffcoat and had to be hospitalized. Once again it looked like his career may be over because of getting hit with pitches. But Zimmer triumphantly returned for an appearance as a defensive replacement on September 22nd of that same year.

He recuperated, and played in 84 games in 1957 batting .219 with 6 HRs &19 doubles. He was at short stop for the Dodgers final game played at Ebbetts Field on September 24, 1957. In that game he got two hits as the Dodgers beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 2-0.

Zimmer was with the Dodgers as they moved west to Los Angeles in 1958. He played in 127 games batting as the clubs main short stop, hitting .262 with career highs in HRs (17) RBIs (60) & stolen bases (14). The 14 steals were 8th most in the league, and he was only thrown out twice all season. He did strike out 92 times which was third most in the NL.

In the Dodgers 1959 Championship season, he shared time at short with rookie Maury Wills, batting only .165 playing in 97 games. He got one at bat in the 1959 World Series against the Chicago White Sox, going 0-1. The Dodgers won the World Series & young Zimmer had two Championships.

In April of 1960 with Maury Wills setteling as the Dodger short stop f the future, Zimmer was traded to the Chicago Cubs for Ron Peranoski & $25,000 cash. That season he played mostly at second base & made his only All Star appearance. On the year he hit .252 with 13 HRs & 40 RBIs.

In October of 1961 he was drafted away from the Chicago Cubs by the newly formed New York Mets as the fifth pick in the premium phase of the expansion draft. He became an original Met, playing as the team’s first ever third baseman, He was in the line up in the first Mets game ever, batting in the seventh position at third, in Sportsman Park at St. Louis.

Don Zimmer got the second hit in Met history, when he singled off the Cards Larry Jackson, in the second inning. He hit safely in his first three games, but his Mets career was to very be short lived. After just 14 games he was traded to his hometown Cincinnati Reds for (one of the two Mets pitchers) named Bob Miller & outfielder Cliff Cook.

In 14 games as a New York Met, Zimmer went 4-52 for a .077 average driving in his only Mets run on April 27th. It was a 6th inning RBI single off Philadelphia's Cal McLish, bringing the score to 11-3 in the Phillies favor.

He finished the season in Cincinnati batting .250 in 63 games. Overall he hit just .213 & then was sent back to the Los Angeles Dodgers in January for a minor leaguer.

In June of 1963 after 22 games as a Dodger his contract was purchased by the Washington Senators, playing there for three seasons. In 1964 he played in 121 games over, 87 as the team's third baseman batting .246 with 12 HRs & 38 RBIs. Zimmer finished his playing career with the Senators in 1965 at age 34.

In his 12 year playing career (1095 games) he hit.235 with 773 hits 91 HRs 130 doubles 22 triples 45 stolen bases 246 walks 352 RBIs & a .290 on base %. He would play 375 games at third base, 294 games at second base, 288 games at short, 35 games at catcher & eight games in the outfield.

Retirement: He managed in the minors and became a Montreal Expos coach in 1971. By 1972 Zimmer began what was to be his long managerial career. His first job as skipper was with the San Diego Padres (1972-1973). He finished sixth both times with those Padres with the bright yellow road uniforms. He then moved on to the Boston Red Sox first as a third base coach. 

Post Season: In the Game #6 of the 1975 World Series he was involved in a memorable play at third base. In the bottom of the 9th, Boston had the bases loaded and no one out with the score tied. Denny Doyle was on third base, as a soft fly was hit to left field. 

It was too shallow to score the winning run, Doyle tagged, as Zimmer shouted "No! No! No!" but Doyle heard "Go Go Go" he ran & was thrown out at the plate. That play, & Dwight Evans spectacular catch off Joe Morgans would be HR, set up Carlton Fisk's walk off classic, game-winning home run.  

Zimmer replaced Darrell Johnson after the Sox pennant year of 1975, after they lost that World Series to the Big Red Machine in seven games.

Zimmer remained in Boston from 1976-1980. He finished third three times, second once & fourth in his final season. In 1978, his Red Sox blew a big August lead with many questionable moves on the manager’s part. 

He played catcher Carlton Fisk in 154 games even though Fisk had complained of sore knees. Zimmer kept Butch Hopson playing regularly at third base with floating bone chips in his elbow. Hobson ended up making 43 errors & could not hit for any power. 

Zimmer despised "The Space Man" pitcher Bill Lee & kept him out of a key game against the A.L. New York team, even though Lee had dominated them his entire career, winning 12 of 17 decisions against them. Even Carl Yastremski pleaded with Zimmer to start Lee or Luis Tiant, but it did not happen. Lee hated Zimmer as well & would later refer to his manager as “the Gerbil”.

After Boston, Zimmer went to the Texas Rangers (1981-1982) then to the Chicago Cubs (1988-1991). In 1989 his Cubs won 93 games and won the NL East, their first in five years. But Chicago lost to the San Franciso Giants in the NLCS. He was honored with the Manager of the Year Award that season.

In 1991 he was fired after an 18-19 start, ending his 13 year managerial career at 885-858 with a .508 winning percentage. Since then he went on to a long coahing career: Boston Red Sox (1992) Colorado Rockies (1993-1995) A.L. New York club (1996-2003) & the Tampa Rays (2004-2014).

Zimmer has said the only pay checks he ever recieved all came from baseball. He knew no other jobs. He also wrote two baseball books: Zim: A Baseball Life & The Zen of Zim.

In 2008 he suffered a stroke and then served as a senior advisor for the Tampa Rays at Spring Training & home games. He would wear a uniform number that celebrated how many years he had been in major league baseball. He would spend 65 years in the game.

On June 4, 2014 Zimmer passed away from heart & kidney problems, he was 83 years old. 

One Time Italian/ American Mets Player Turned Long Time Coach: Larry Bowa (1985)

Lawrence Robert Bowa was born December 6, 1945 in Sacramento, California. His dad was an infielder in the St. Louis Cardinals organization but never played in the big leagues.

Bowa didn’t make his high school baseball team & while at Sacramento City College only had the Phillies interested in him. When the scouts went to see him, the fiery Bowa got thrown out of the game for arguing. Bowa has always had an excited personality as a player, coach & manager later in his career.
He always had a quick temper & has been known to throw an occasional water cooler & get tossed out of games.

Eventually the Philadelphia Phillies signed the young Bowa as an amateur free agent in 1965. The sure handed, solid fielding short stop hit .300 in his first minor league season. He played in the minors for five years & after batting .287 in 1969 made the 1970 Phillies team.

In 1970 he came in third in the Rookie of the Year voting batting .250 with 24 stolen bases, but it was his fielding that would make Bowa a solid big league player.

He became one of the National Leagues best short stops in the seventies, winning two gold gloves, making five All Star teams & leading the league in fielding six times. In 1979, he even set an MLB record for shortstops with a .991 fielding average.

Bowa put in a few good offensive seasons at the plate as well. He batted over .280 four times, including one .300 season in 1975. He was a good base runner, stealing 20 or more bases in nine different seasons. He would steal thirty or more bases three times, putting up the NL's best stole base average in 1977.

In 1972 Bowa hit .250 but led the league in sac hits (18) & triples with 13. He would come in the leagues top ten, five different times hitting triples. Bowa was a fine base runner stealing over twenty bases nine times in his career. In 1974 he stole a career high 39 bases (8th in the league), while hitting .275.

In 1975 he hit over .300 for the only time in his career (.305).  Bowa was a fine singles & sacrifice situation hitter. He would be in the NL's top five in sac hits four times & singles three times. He led the league in singles (153) in 1978. Being atop the lineup often, he was in the top ten in at bats six times, leading the league with 650 in 1971.

Bowa played in Philadelphia for 12 seasons, alongside Hall of Fame third baseman Mike Schmidt after his arrival in 1973. Together they led the Phillies to five NL Eastern Titles & one World Series victory in 1980.

Post Season: In his first two NLCS appearances he only had three hits in 25 at bats, posting a .125 batting average. In the 1978 NLCS Bowa hit .333 with six hits, two runs scored & a walk against the NL Champion L.A. Dodgers.

In the 1980 NLCS against the Houston Astros, he batted .316 with two runs scored. In the final Game #5, with the Phillies down 5-2, Bowa started an 8th inning rally with a base hit. He scored when Nolan Ryan walked Pete Rose with the bases loaded.

1980 World Series: In the 1980 World Series against the Kansas City Royals, Bowa hit .375 with nine hits, three stolen bases & two RBIs. He drove in a run in Game #2 with a base hit off Larry Gura and another in Game #4  off Dennis Leonard. Bowa had a three hit day in Game #3, which the Royals won 4-3. He added two more in the next game, in the Phil's 5-4 win in Game #5 .

By 1981 he wasn’t getting along with Phillies management any longer & expressed his intent to be traded. His former manager Dallas Green was now a GM in Chicago with the Cubs. He dealt Ivan DeJesus for Bowa, but demanded a youngster named Ryne Sandberg be involved in the deal.

Bowa's veteran leadership helped mentor Sandberg & got the Cubs to the post season in 1984. Bowa hit just .200 that year. In 1985 he was released by the Cubs in August & was quickly picked up by the New York Mets.

Everyone seems to forget Bowa finished his long 16 year career with the Mets. Bowas made his Mets debut on August 23rd, going 0-4 in a 3-0 loss to the San Diego Padres. The next day he got one of his two Mets hits. In 14 games in New York he went 2-19 (.105) with two RBIs, both of them coming on September 13th at Olympic Stadium in Montreal. Bowa played at second base in his final game & was on deck as Rusty Staub recorded the last out of the Mets 1985 season.

Bowa finished his career with 8414 at bats (113th all time) 2191 hits (191st all time) 1815 singles (82nd all time) 151 sacrifice hits (171st all time) 262 doubles 99 triples 15 HRs, 525 RBIs & a .260 batting average.

Defensively he is 7th all time in games played at short (2222) twelfth in fielding % (.980) ninth in assists (6857) & eleventh in double plays turned (1265).

Retirement: After his playing days he became manager of the San Diego Padres (1987-1988) then went back to his old Phillies team as a coach from 1989-1996.

He became their manager in 2001 winning the Manager of the Year Award, finishing in second place. But after failing to make the post season in three seasons, was fired in 2004 after just ten games.

He became a coach for the Anaheim Angels, A.L. New York club, Seattle Mariners & L.A. Dodgers under Joe Torre in 2008. He has been named the bench coach for the Phillies in the 2014 season, under new manager Ryne Sandberg, whom he mentored back in the early eighties.

In June 2014 he ripped into his Phillies team on local radio, saying the were not playing big league baseball. Bowa singled out Dominick Brown, saying he had five or six good weeks last year & if it was up to him he wouldn't be playing now. He also said pitcher; Roberto Hernandez needed to get deeper into games “if you’ve got a big league uniform on, you gotta go more than five innings.”

In 2015 Sandberg resigned & Bowa remained bench coach under new skipper Pete Mackanin. In late August of 2015 the 69 year old Bowa, went on another tirade, this time against the New York Mets. It caused a bench clearing incident after Met pitcher Hansel Robles threw a quick pitch to Phillie Darin Ruf. 

Bowa has also worked for ESPN & Sirius XM on the MLB Channel.

Jan 15, 2017

2015 NL Champion Mets Closer: Jeurys Familia (2012-2015)

Jeurys Familia was born on October 10th, 1989 in Santa Domingo, Dominican Republic. The six four, right handed pitcher signed with the New York Mets in 2008.

Familia began his career in A ball; with the Gulf Coast Mets in 2008 going 2-2 with the leagues 8th best ERA at 2.79. He advanced to Savannah going 10-6 in 2009 then to St. Lucie in 2010 where he went 6-9 with a high  5.58 ERA.

Surprisingly he was chosen to play in the Futures game, where he came in relief in the 7th inning with his team down 7-1. He served up three straight doubles, including one to Mike Trout.

In 2011 he went to AA Binghamton going 4-4 as a starting pitcher with a 3.49 ERA in 17 starts. He was promoted to AAA Buffalo the next year going an overall 9-9 with a 4.73 ERA, making 28 starts.

Familia got a September call up & debuted with the Mets on September 4th, 2012 pitching one inning of scoreless relief in a 5-1 loss at St. Louis.

He would finish three games that month, unable to close out a 16-1 debacle against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citi Field. That day he allowed five runs on three hits in that 9th inning. On October 1st, he got his first start which came in Miami against the Marlins. He only allowed one hit but walked six batters & was removed after four innings.

In 2013  he started out the season on the Mets roster, debuting on April 4th, in the third game of the season. He allowed an earned run in each of his first two outings then settled in making four scoreless appearances. On May 3rd, he earned his first career save, pitching the 10th inning in a 7-5 win at Atlanta over the Braves.

On June 9th he underwent surgery to have bone spurs removed from his elbow & went on the DL. He wasn't expected to pitch again in 2013 but made a return on September 17th, pitching part of the 9th inning in a 8-5 loss to the San Francisco Giants.

“It’s really a tribute to how the kid worked to get back because we certainly didn’t expect him to be back this year at all,” Manager Terry Collins said. He allowed two hits, two walks & an earned run in his return.

In 2014 Familia was the Mets work horse out of the bullpen, leading the club in appearances (76) while posting the pen's best ERA (2.21). 

He was the 2014 Opening Day losing pitcher at Citi Field, starting the 10th inning of a 5-5 tie with the Washington Nats, he gave up two hits, a passed ball & sac fly before getting relieved by John Lannan. Lannan would eventually serve up a three run HR.

Two games later he gave up two more runs in another Met loss to Washington & his ERA soared to over twenty. On April 25th he earned his first win of the year, coming against the Miami Marlins, getting him to 1-2.

Familia settled in nicely & after the All Star break earned his second win of the year & earned five straight holds lowering his ERA to 1.81. In mid August he earned three saves from August 9th to August 20th.

In September he suffered a loss to the Marlins in Miami in an ugly inning where he gave up a double, a walk, a wild pitch, an error & a fielders choice run scoring play. But he then earned seven more holds as well as a save finishing off the year as the Mets main 8th inning guy leading to Jenrry Mejia.

In 2014 he was 2-5 with 23 holds, 16 games finished, 73 strike outs & 32 walks in 77 innings of work.

Terry Collins had planned on using Jennry Mejia as the Mets closer in 2015 with Familia being used as the set up man. But that all changed when Mejia was suspended after being caught dirty using banned substances. A lack of arms in the bullpen made Familia the Mets closer. He took the opportunity & went with, becoming one of the best closers in the game. helping get the Mets to the 2015 World Series.

On April 12th he earned his first save of the season, it came in Atlanta in a 4-3 win over the Braves. From there he went on a roll, Familia saved 13 straight games going into mid May without blowing a save. On May 18th he blew a save against the St. Louis Cardinals resulting in a 2-1 Mets loss. It would be another month before he blew his next save.

On June 15th his son was born to fiancĂ©e Bianca, Familia stayed with the Mets & earned a save that night against the Braves. By the end of June he had notched 21 saves & had a 1.23 ERA. At the All Star break, Familia had 27 saves & was posting a 1.25 ERA. He just missed out getting voted on to the NL All Star team. By this time he was the talk of the league, as players would leave the batters box shaking their heads after seeing his stuff.

There was a bit of concern after the break, as Familia had two of his worst outings of the year in back to back games. He blew a save against the LA Dodgers but the Mets rallied for a win.

Then four days later on July 26th, he gave up a season high; three runs to the San Diego Padres, taking the loss. Familia did not have a save in eleven days as the Mets reached a low point in the season.

But things turned around for everyone when GM Sandy Alderson added some key  players to the mix, Micahel Conforto, Steven Matz,  Kelly Johnson Juan Uribe, Tyler Clippard & slugger Yoenis Cespedes  all helped turn the club around.

On August 1st, Familia was back, earning another save his 28th of the season. Over the next two months as the Mets went on to win the NL Eastern Division, Familia did not blow another save. He recorded 16 more saves in the final two months of the season. 

On October 4th in the final game of the Mets regular season, Familia  closed out the 1-0 win over the Washington Nationals at Citi Field. It was his 43rd save of the year tying a Mets single season record formerly held by Armando Benitez.

His 43 saves were third best in the NL, Familia was tops in the league in games finished with 65. He posted a 1.85 ERA, a 2-2 record with 86 strike outs & 19 walks in 78 innings of work. Familia had at least two strike outs in an inning twenty times on the year, striking out the side three times on the year as well. There was only one week during the season (July 30-Aug 7th) his ERA was over two.

Post Season:  2015 NLDS: In the NLDS against the Los Angeles Dodgers, Familia opened up Game 31 with a save after a fine outing by Jacob deGrom. After two no decisions, he was back on the mound for the Game #5 clincher in LA.

This time it was a two inning save, as he relieved Noah Syndergaard in the 8th inning holding on to a 3-2 lead. He closed out the game striking out AJ Ellis & Howie Kendrick as the Mets advanced to their first NLCS since 2006. He fell to his knees in celebration paying homage to Jesse Orosco after his Game #7 World Series save in 1986. Familia retired all 16 batters he faced in the NLDS.

2015 NLCS: In the NLCS sweep over the Chicago Cubs, Familia earned three saves in the first three games. In four games, four innings he allowed no runs on two hits, two walks & three strike outs, keeping his post season ERA at 0.00.

2015 World Series: In the World Series against the KC Royals, Familia had a rough time as well as a lot of bad breaks. In Game #1 he served up a 9th inning game tying run to Alex Gordon, it was the first save he had blown in two months. The Mets went on to the extra inning loss.

He would not pitch in Game #2 & then finished off the Game #3 loss.

In Game #4 the Mets had a 3-2 lead going into the 8th inning. Tyler Clippard put two men on with walks & Terry Collins went to Familia. A possible double play ball to Daniel Murphy was booted, the tying run scored & there was just one out with two on. Familia gave up back to back singles & the Mets were down three games to one.

In the final Game #5, Familia relieved Matt Harvey after a valiant effort which got him to the 9th inning. After Harvey gave up a run on a Eric Hosmer double, Familia came in to a 2-1 Mets lead. Hosmer scored on a weak ground ball to short, tying the game earning him the blown save. His three blown saves are a World Series record.The Mets went on to the extra inning loss ending their season.

Overall in the post season Familia pitched 14.2 innings, allowing just one earned run (two runs overall) five hits with nine strike outs & two walks.

Family: Familia built a house for his parents in the Dominican Republic, the only delay came when he paid for a leg surgery for his father, that had plagued him since he was a child. Also in 2015 he & his wife had a son.

In 2016 Familia picked up his role as the Mets closer & one of the top relievers in baseball. He sailed through April, with eight saves & a 2.25 ERA. On May 25th, he set a Mets franchise record, converting 32 consecutive opportunities, breaking Billy Wagners old record. He would save 16 games & have two wins before suffering his first loss, which came on May 29th in Los Angeles. That came during a rough stretch at the end of May, in his previous outing on May 27th, he allowed four runs but the Mets pulled out a 6-5 win.

On June 24th, he set another team record starting out the year converting 25 consecutive save opportunities to open a season. In June into mid July he allowed just one run in 17.2 innings of work, earning fifteen more saves, totaling 33 up to that point. That year Mets Manager named him to the NL All Star team.

2016 New York Mets All Stars @ All Star Game Intros

It wasn't until July 27th & 36 saves to his credit, that he blew his first save. By that point he had set the All Time MLB regular season mark by converting 53 straight save opportunities.

In the 9th inning at Citi Field, the Cardinals Yadier Molina doubled to tie the game & pinch hitter Kolten Wong also doubled to put the Cars ahead & get the win. The next night he blew another allowing two more runs, this time to the Colorado Rockies. It seems the work load had caused him some fatigue but it was enough for the media to say his performances were a matter of concern.

In August he allowed just one earned rum, this in his third blown save coming against the San Diego Padres. That night Will Meyers hit the only HR Familia would give up all regular season, the only other of 2016 came in the NL Wild Card Game, resulting in a loss.

On September 1st at Citi Field, he set the New York Mets all time single season save mark with his 44th save. He broke the record of 43 held by himself & Armando Benitez. As the Mets rolled through September to capture the NL tops Wild Card spot, Familia saved seven more games & on October 1st, set a Mets franchise record with 51 saves on the season. He did suffer another loss that month, coming on September 21st against the Atlanta Braves.

For the 2016 season he led the NL in saves with 51 & games finished with 67.  He became just the second Mets closer in team history along with John Franco to lead the league in saves. He posted a 2.55 ERA going 3-4 with 84 strike outs & 31 walks (six intentional) in 77.2 innings in 78 appearances.

2016 Wild Card Game: Familia was brought in to the scoreless game against the San Francisco Giants, in the 9th inning and surrendered a leadoff double to Brandon Crawford. He struck out former Met Angel Pagan then walked Joe Panick. The big blow came from Conner Gillaspie, a three run shot ending the Mets 2016 season as Madison Bugarner completed the 3-0 shut out.

Drama: On Halloween, 2016, Familia was arrested in Ft. Lee New Jersey, on a domestic violence charge following a frantic telephone call to 911 by his wife Bianca, who said he had been drinking a little, and going crazy.

He pleaded not guilty & a few weeks later his wife asked that all the charges be dropped. But he most likely will receive discipline from MLB. At the time of the incident the Mets organization were shocked at the situation.

Remembering Mets History: (2016) Jeruys Familia Sets Franchise Save Record

Wednesday August 31st, 2016: The hot New York Mets (69-64) hosted Don Mattingly's slumping Miami Marlins (67-66) in game three of an important four game series.

Today the Mets learned that they will lost their second baseman Neil Walker for the rest of the season as he will need back surgery. With David Wright & Lucas Duda also gone for the year to back issues 3/4 of the Mets projected infield for 2016 was gone. But these Mets have stepped up & are making an exciting hopeful playoff run going into September. With the Mets win tonight, (their third straight) it marks their ninth win in eleven games, putting them within 1 1/2 games of the wild card.

Bartolo Colon took the mound for his team leading 27th start of the year. Who would have though the oldest pitcher on the young staff would be leading the club in starts? In the top of the 2nd, sloppy Mets errors by Colon & Jose Reyes led to a Marlins run.

But the resilient Mets answered back as Curtis Granderson led off the home 2nd with a walk & Wilmer Flores hit a two run HR, his 15th of the year off Marlin starter Jason Esch who was making his MLB debut. 2-1 Mets.

Quotes: Wilmer Flores- "Righty, lefty, I don't really care who's out there. I have the same approach. Whenever you're feeling good, you hit righties, lefties, it doesn't matter. I feel good against anybody."

The Mets let some opportunities go leaving seven men on base & having pitcher Colon ground into two double plays killing rallies. But again these resilient Mets wont give up. After the Marlins tied it on another Christian Yelich HR, the Mets answered in the home 8th.

Yoenis Cespedes started it off with a base hit, Granderson followed with a walk. After Flores flew out,  the struggeling Jay Bruce popped out for the second out. 

But A.J. Ramos then lost control & walked Travis d'Arnaud to load the bases. Ramos got Kelly Johnson to afull count before the clutch hitting veteran delivered a three run double to right field.

The big crowd of 33,471 including the Little League World Series Champions from upstate New York who were honored by the Mets tonight, went wild. Lets Go Mets!

Quotes: Kelly Johnson-"It's nice to look up in September and we're still right in the middle of it. It's there. You talk about the Wild Card, you've got half the teams still in the race there. Honestly, we've just got to win."

Colon got no decision but the workhorse threw seven innings allowing two runs (one earned) on seven hits with three Ks. Addison Reed got the win (4-2) lowering his ERA to 2.01.

In the 9th it was Jeruys Familia coming on to make Mets history. Tonight he got the save, his 44th of the year setting a new Mets single season save mark. With all the great relievers of Mets past, Tug McGraw, Ron Taylor, Jesse Orosco, Roger McDowell, Randy Meyers, John Franco, Armando Benitez & others, Familia now ranks 1st in single season saves. He broke the mark of 43 which he held tying Armando Benitez last season.

Deuces wild- Johnson, Cespedes, Bruce & d'Arnaud all had two hits each on the night.

After the game manager Terry Collins broke his own rule stepping into the clubhouse to tell the team how proud he is of them. "I took 30 seconds and told them how proud I was of the fact that they've hung in there," Collins said. "Through all the midsummer injuries and all the different things that have happened, they've hung in there."