Daniel Murphy (Part Two) 2015 Post Season Record Setter

In the 2015 off season Daniel Murphy's name kept coming up in trade talks again, as the Mets continued to shop him. 

They did not find a suitable buyer & it was back to Spring Training once again in a Mets uniform. He continued to dodge the questions that came his way & went about his business as usual, like the true professional he was.

No one expected the year that was ahead of Daniel Murphy. 

Religious Views: During Spring Training Billy Bean was going around to baseball teams to promote Inclusion to MLB. Murphy a Religious man stated "I do disagree with the fact that Billy is a homosexual. That doesn’t mean I can’t still invest in him and get to know him. You can still accept him, but I do disagree with the lifestyle, 100%." 

After these comments became controversial to some, Murph said he'll stick with baseball & not tell reporters about his religious beliefs anymore.

2015 Mets NL Pennant Season: Daniel Murphy would be the teams main second baseman but would also see action at third as David Wright went down with an injury, missing Most of his season. 
Murph was the Mets Opening Day second baseman batting in the 5th position. He was 0-4 in the Mets win at Washington. 
On April 12th with the scored tied 3-3 in Atlanta, his 8th inning sac fly scoring Curtis Granderson proved to be the game winning run in the 4-3 win. On April 14th he hit his first HR of the season, coming off the Phillies Dustin McGowan in a 6-5 Mets victory.
Four RBI Game: On April 23rd, Murph cleared the bases in the 1st inning with a bases loaded double off Atlanta's Julio Teheran. He added an RBI single in the 7th giving the Mets insurance run in their eventual 6-3 win over the Braves. 
The win was the Mets 11th in a row, giving them an early season 4.5 game lead in first place. 
centerfieldmaz was in attendance that day.
He drove in two runs in the subway series loss two games later. On April 27th, he drove in all three Mets runs with a three run HR off the Marlins' Steve Cishek in a 3-1 win in South Florida.
Murph actually had a slow start in April ending the month batting .198 with 16 hits although he hit 2 HRs & drove in 14 runs.
In May the hits started to come easier as he batted .330 in the month raising his batting average to .272. He collected 34 hits that month while driving in 12 runs.
On May 1st, with the Mets up 1-0 in the 8th inning at Citi Field, Murph hit a bases loaded three run double off the Nat's Blake Treinen leading to a 4-0 Matt Harvey/ Jeurys Familia victory.
In June he went on the DL for three weeks missing action from June 5th through the 30th. In his return he had four hits in a series in which the Mets got swept by the team they would end up sweeping in that year's NLCS, the Chicago Cubs. 
His return in July was a bit slow as he batted just .245. He hit a July 12th HR in Arizona, while driving in two runs in the Mets 5-3 win. On July 15th, he hit a two run HR off the Dodgers Chin-hui Tsao in a 15-2 romp over L.A. in a show down of what was to come in the post season's NLDS. 
Considering the amazing post season run Murph would have, it's funny to see that the most HRs he hit any month during the regular season was four, as he did it in both August & September.
On August 2nd he hit a HR off the Nationals Jordan Zimmerman in a 5-3 win at Citi Field, as the Mets swept an important series from Washington taking over first place.
 Murph collected three hits in the series. This came during a six-game win streak, in where Murph hit another HR in Tampa off Jake Odorizzi in a 4-3 Mets victory.

By this point Murph was settling into the number three spot in the line up in front of the newly acquired Yoenis Cespedes, who just arrived after the trade deadline. Cespedes was the hottest hitter on the planet during the stretch run. A role Murph would take over in the post season. 
In August he raised his average from .266 to .281 while collecting 33 hits batting .311. He hit 11 doubles & drove in twenty runs.
In September Murph would drive in 17 more runs while hitting eight more doubles & hitting HRs against the Atlanta Braves twice, the Phillies & the AL New York club. On September 26th Murph had two hits & two runs scored in the NL Eastern Division clincher at Cincinnati.
He ended the year batting .281(best on the Mets team) his lowest batting average since his first full season 2009 where he hit .266. Murph was the hardest man in the league to strike out (13.1) going down just 38 times in 499 at bats.

He collected 140 hits (2nd on the Mets) with 38 doubles (5th in the NL) 2 triples 14 HRs 73 RBIs (first on the club tied with Lucas Duda)56 runs scored & a .322 on base %. He was walked intentionally ten times (8th most in the NL).

Defensively he posted a .279 fielding % at second base (69 games) making six errors, he made six more errors at third (42 games) with a .935 fielding%.
2015 Post Season- NLDS: On October 9th, 2015, Murph got to play in his first post season game, finally enjoying the benefits after playing seven struggling seasons with the Mets.
In Game #1 of the NLDS against the Los Angeles Dodgers, in the bottom of the 4th inning Murph put the Mets on the board with their first post season run as he hit a solo HR off Clayton Kershaw. The Mets went on to a 3-1 win behind Jacob deGrom's seven shutout innings. Murphy was 1-4 in the game.
In the Game #2 Mets loss Murphy collected a base hit off Zack Greinke going 1-4. 

The Mets came home to Citi Field for Game #3, as they routed L.A in a 13-7 win. In the 4th inning, with Juan Lagares on second & David Wright on first, Murphy singled off Dodgers reliever, Alex Wood bringing in Lagares with the Mets seventh run, making it 7-3.
In Game #4 at Citi Field, the Mets only had three hits total off Clayton Kershaw, in a 3-1 loss. The only run came when Murphy hit a solo HR off Kershaw, giving the Citi Faithful (which centerfieldmaz was in attendance at) something to cheer about. It was his second HR off Kershaw in the series.
As the NLDS moved back to LA for the decisive Game #5 Murph's star was really about to shine. In the top of the 1st, Curtis Granderson led off the game with a base hit. After David Wright struck out, Murph doubled to left field off Zack Greinke giving the Mets a 1-0 lead.
In the 4th inning, with LA now ahead 2-1, Murphy singled to start the 4th inning. With one out, Lucas Duda walked, the Dodgers had a shift to the right side of the infield on Duda. With no one covering third base Murphy alertly trotted to second & then took off to third base sliding in safely. 
The Dodger blunder was huge for the Mets possibly being the turning point. Murph then scored the tying run on Travis d'Arnaud's sac fly.
As Mets pitcher Jacob deGrom settled in shutting down the Dodger offense, Murph put them away with a solo HR to right field, this one coming off Greinke as well. 
Prior to this Murph had only homered in back-to-back games, once in his entire career. The Mets went on to the 3-2 win and advanced to their first NLCS since 2006.
Overall, in the NLDS Murphy led the Mets in hits (7) runs scored (5) HRs (3) RBIs (5) while batting .33 with a .333 on base % as well.
2015 Post Season- NLCS: On October 17th, 2015, the Mets hosted the Chicago Cubs in Game #1 of the NLCS. 
In the bottom of the 1st inning, the man everyone was talking about; Daniel Murphy electrified Citi Field as he blasted a line drive HR to right field, off Cubs pitcher Jon Lester, putting the Mets up 1-0. 
It was Murph's third straight post season game with a HR & his fourth post season HR overall. The Mets went on to a 4-2 win with Murph going 1-4.
In Game #2 the Cubs sent their ace Jake Arrieta to the mound to face Hoah Syndergaard. The Mets took care of Arietta right away as Curtis Granderson singled & then came home when David Wright doubled.
Then the hottest hitter in the universe came up in Daniel Muphy. After fouling off a long shot down the right field line just missing a HR, he connected for a HR over the wall putting New York up 3-0.  It was his fourth straight post season game with a HR.

Trivia: With that HR Murphy tied Mike Piazza for the most Mets HRs in a post season. He now had hit HRs in four straight post season games, breaking Don Clendenon's 1969 franchise record of three straight post season HR games.
He would collect another hit later on as the Mets went on to a 4-1 win, taking a commanding two games to none lead in the NLCS.
Syndergaard held the Cubs to a lone run through 5.2 innings, striking out nine. The Mets bullpen shut out the Cubs the rest of the way for the win & two games to none lead in the series.
As Game #3 moved on to Wrigley Field Chicago, all the talk continued to be about Daniel Muphy. As people who had never heard of him before, now knew his name all around New York. Baseball people knew this kind of post season hitting was special & rarely done before.
Rumors circulating that week, that no matter what kind of a playoff run Murph had, that the team still wasn't going to sign him, that kind of changed, at least for the moment. Reports came in that the Mets would possibly offer him double his salary in the off season, although that probably still would be short of what other teams may offer.
In any event Murph just continued his hot hitting, gave humbling interviews, complimenting his teammates being a true soft-spoken gentleman that he is. 
As he said in post-game interviews as long as the interviews keep coming that means the team has won another game.
In Game #3 with the score tied 1-1 in the 3rd inning, Murph continued his hot streak, putting a HR into the center field bleachers at Wrigley Field, this one was a solo shot off of Kyle Hendricks.
 MLB Post Season HR Record Tied: This HR tied Carlos Beltran's all time MLB 2004 post season HR streak that also went five games.
In the 7th Murphy singled, advanced to third on Yoenis Cespedes' base hit & then scored on Lucas Duda's grounder to first base. The Mets went on to a 5-2 win taking a three to nothing series lead.
By Game #4, the Mets fans were excited about sweeping the series & advancing to their first World Series in 15 years. No one expected with all that going on that Daniel Murphy could possibly continue at the pace he was on.
In Game #4 the Mets got back-to-back HRs from Lucas Duda (a three run shot) & Travis d'Arnaud in the 1st inning.  In the 2nd, Murphy singled & scored on Lucas Duda's two run double giving the Mets a 6-0 lead.
Post Season Record: In the top of the 8th, Daniel Murphy who had gone 3-4 with a double & a pair of singles up to that point, made MLB history. He defied all sanity by connecting with a HR off Fernando Rodney that traveled & carried into the Wrigley Field bleachers.
It was his sixth straight post season game with a HR, a new MLB record. 
It was also his seventh HR of the post season, seven HRs in nine games. During the regular season he had hit just 14 HRs in 130 games played. Amazing. The solo HR put New York up 8-1, a lead they would never give up. 
The Mets went on to an 8-3 victory winning the 2015 National League Pennant.
In the NLCS Murphy was named the NLCS MVP as he led the Mets in hits (9) batting average (.529) HRs (4) Runs scored (6) on base % (.556%) & tied with Lucas Duda for the most RBIs (6).

Trivia: The so-called "curse" for the Chicago Cubs stemmed back to 1908 involving a Billy Goat who ironically named Murphy!

2015 World Series: The Mets faced the Kansas City Royals in the 2015 World Series. 
In Game #1 Murph did not hit a HR & his streak ended at seven games. Although he collected two hits, it seemed like a letdown. 
In seven at bats, he was 2-7 with a run scored. The Mets lost the game 5-4 in a heart breaking 14 innings. David Wright was charged with an error to start the inning & eventually he advanced then scored on Eric Hosmer's sac fly off Bartolo Colon.
In Game #2 Murphy was held hitless, ending his ten-game post season hit streak. He drew a pair of walks in the Mets 7-1 loss at Kansas City. In Game #3 the Mets showed new life behind Noah Syndergaard's victory. They scored nine runs on twelve hits with David Wright & Curtis Granderson hitting HRs, with Wright collecting four RBIs. Murph was 0-4.
In Game #4, something the Mets had always disliked about Murph came through to haunt them, his defense. In the top of the 8th inning, with the Mets clinging to a 3-2 lead Tyler Clippard walked two batters. 
Then Eric Hosmer hit a little roller that went thru Murphy & into center field. Ben Zibrist scored from second to tie the game.

That opened the flood gates at the Royals added a pair of hits off Jeurys Familia to take a 5-3 lead & go on to win the game taking a three game to one lead in the series. 
In Game #5 Matt Harvey electrified the crowd with eight shutout innings & demanding to come out for the 9th. Terry Collins agreed but a walk & a double tied the game ending Harveys brilliant performance as KC tied the game. In the top of the 12th the Royals struck, Murphy made another error on attempted force out which led to another run as well. The Royals put up five runs in the inning going on to win the World Series.
It was a sad ending to Murph's great post season & his solid Mets career. In the off season he was let go to free agency as originally expected. He signed on with the rival Washington Nat's.
This proved to be one of the worst moves the Mets did or didn't make in that off season. Murphy became a superstar in Washington DC & haunted the Mets for the next two seasons.
All Time Mets Leader Board: In his seven-year Mets career Murphy is fifth on the All-Time Mets list as a second baseman with 509 games played. He played in 903 Mets games (15th most all time).

He is third in Mets history in doubles (228). He is 12th with hits (967) & in RBIs (402). He is 13th in runs scored (422) & sacrifice flies (29). He is tied for 14th in triples (20).
He batted .288 with 62 HRs a .331 on base % & .755 OPS.
Post Mets Career:
In his first season with the Nat's, he collected his 1000th career hit & made his second All Star team. For 2016 he hit .347 (2nd in the NL) with 184 hits 25 HRs a league leading, 47 doubles & .595 slugging %. 
He had 104 RBIs (4th in the NL) 8 sac flies (6th in the NL) & a .390 on base % (7th in the NL) playing in 142 games. Murph came in second place in the NL's MVP voting.
2016 Post Season- NLDS: In the NLDS loss to the Dodgers Murph batted .438 (7-16) with six RBIs.
Murphy continued to produce in 2017 for the NL Eastern Champion Nat's, he was second in the league in hitting at .322. He collected 172 hits (8th in the NL) with 23 HRs a league leading 43 doubles 93 RBIs 94 runs scored & a .384 on base %, making his third All Star team.
2017 Post Season- NLDS: In the NLDS loss to the Chicago Cubs, he hit just .211 but connected for a HR in the final Game #5 loss.
In 2018 he began the year on the DL after having off season knee surgery. He was batting .300 when the Nationals, who were clearly not making the post season, traded Murphy to the Chicago Cubs for a minor leaguer. Murph hit .297 with 6 HRs & 13 RBIs in the 35 games with the Cubs. He made the post season once again & went 0-4 in the NL Wild Card game loss to the Rockies.

In the off season he signed on with the Colorado Rockies. In 2019 he batted .279 with 13 HRs 35 doubles & 78 RBIs. In the Covid shortened 2020 season, he played in 40 games batting .236. then retired at the end of the season.
Career Stats: In his 12-year career Murph batted .296 with 1572 hits 371 doubles 29 triples 138 HRs & 735 RBIs with 710 runs scored. He drew 364 walks with 709 strike outs, posting a .341 on base % & .796 OPS.
The versatile Murph has played 837 games at second, 364 games at third, 87 games at third & 60 games in the outfield.
Family: Daniel & his wife Victoria "Tori" were married in 2012, they have three children. They are devout Christians.


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