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Mets to induct four new members to its franchise Hall of Fame

When the Mets open their franchise Hall of Fame inside Citi Field this season, four new members will be inducted.

The New York Mets will open a new Hall of Fame and Museum inside Citi Field this season and it will include four new members. The team announced Dwight Gooden, Darryl Strawberry, Davey Johnson and Frank Cashen would be inducted into the franchise Hall of Fame.

The induction will take place August 1, 2010 before the Mets play the Arizona Diamondbacks at Citi Field. These four men are the first inductees into the teams’ Hall of Fame since 2002 when Tommie Agee received the honor.

Gooden, Strawberry, Johnson and Cashen represent the dominant teams of the 1980’s.

The General Manager from 1980 to 1990, Frank Cashen is the man responsible for builing the 1986 World Championship team. Cashen was hired by the team in 1980 after Nelson Doubleday Jr. purchased the team. The previous season, the Mets finished in last place for the third consecutive season. One of Cashen’s first big pick up’s was when he took a chance on drafting an immature high school kid named Darryl Strawberry. More on Strawberry later. Cashen was also responsible for promoting minor leaguers Hubie Brooks and Mookie Wilson, while making trades for Ron Darling, Dave Kingman and Howard Johnson. He also drafted Dwight Gooden in the 1982 player draft.

The teams under Cashen did not immediately rise to the top, but he never gave up. He continued making deals to improve the team, specifically acquiring Keith Hernandez in one of the frachise’s most lopsided trades ever. Hernandez would become a team leader and key part of the future championship squad.

In 1984 Cashen hired Davey Johnson to manage the Mets. That year the Mets had their first winning season since 1976.  Cashen traded Hubie Brooks and a few other players to the Montreal Expos for catcher Gary Carter. The Mets felt Carter was the missing piece to the championship puzzle. In 1985, the Mets just missed the playoffs but in 1986 they would win the World Series Title. That year they had the best record of any team in the 1980’s.

It didn’t take long for Dwight Gooden to become the team’s ace. In his rookie year, Gooden went 17-9 with a 2.60 ERA and 276 strikeouts (career high).  He is second on the franchise’s all-time win list with 157 and in strikeouts with 1,875. He trails Tom Seaver in both catergories.  Gooden’s best season was probably 1985 when he went 24-4 with a 1.53 ERA. In his 16 year career, Gooden had a 194-112 record and an ERA of 3.51.

Darryl Strawberry came up with the Mets in 1983. The 21 year old kid was a major power threat immediately. In his rookie season, “Straw” hit 26 home runs and drove in 74 runs. He had it all, all the tools to do whatever he wanted on the baseball field. His career high for home runs in a season was 39. He did that twice, 1987 and 1988. Strawberry was Rookie of the Year, and a nine time All-Star. He is the franchise record holder in home runs (252), runs batted in (733) and extra base hits (469). Strawberry finished his career with 335 home runs and a career average of .259.

Davey Johnson was the manager of the Mets from 1984 to 1990. He was fired after the 1990 season. Johnson’s Mets teams won an average of 95 games and never finished the regular season worse then 2nd place. His .588 winning percentage is the highest of any manager in team history.

By being inducted into the Mets Hall of Fame, these four men join the following:

Joan Payson
Casey Stengel
Gil Hodges
George M. Weiss
William A. Shea
Johnny Murphy
Ralph Kiner
Bob Murphy
Lindsey Nelson
Bud Harrelson
Rusty Staub
Tom Seaver
Jerry Koosman
Ed Kranepool
Cleon Jones
Jerry Grote
Tug McGraw
Mookie Wilson
Keith Hernandez
Gary Carter
Tommie Agee

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