Found February 16, 2012 on The Daily Stache:

*Originally Published on 8/24/2010*

Stats in His Mets Career

600 Games, .249 BA, 89 HR, 349 RBI, 272 Runs, 73 Doubles, 542 Hits

His Mets Moment

The final piece of the puzzle, the Mets had it all and were just one piece short it seemed. They had an Ace Pitcher, Speed in the Outfield, Power in the Corner Outfield positons, a solid bullpen and an anchor at First Base. It seemed the Mets had it all, but after falling short in 1984, Mets GM Frank Cashen knew he needed another piece to his championship puzzle.

When Gary Carter was traded from the Expos to the Mets, the Mets took off and won 98 Games and yet fell short once again. They headed into 1986 with high expectations and they didnt disappoint. They reached the NLCS in 1986 and in Game 5, Gary Carter made his name and had his moment as a New York Met.

The Mets and Astros were tied at two games a piece when Dwight Gooden and Nolan Ryan has a classic Pitchers Duel. The teams traded runs in the 5th inning, but both pitchers were filthy as the game was tied after 9 innings at 1-1 and Dwight Gooden even pitched the 10th inning and kept the Astros off the board.

The Game remained tied into the Bottom of the 12th and with one out, Wally Backman, who started the game winning rally in Game 3, singled off of Houston Pitcher Charlie Kerfeld and reached 2nd after a bad pick-off throw.

It was at this point that Houston Manager Hal Lainer decided to walk the lefty hitting Keith Hernandez to face Gary Carter, who was being booed by the Shea faithful and was only 1-21 in the series and had made the final out as the tying run in Game 4 two nights earlier.

With the count full, and Darryl Strawberry on deck, the risk of having the bases loaded with less then two outs was not what the Astros needed.

On the 8th pitch of the at-bat, Carter finally put a pitch in a fair territory, he laced a single up the middle to Center Field, Backman scored from 2nd base and the Mets had taken a 3-2 series lead heading into Game 6 in Houston.

As he ran down the first base line, Carter threw his hands in the air to celebrate, The Kid was acting like a Kid again and even though he was now 2-22, it was as if he was 22-22.

The Mets had gotten one step closer to winning it all and Gary Carter had taken them there, and he truely helped to fill out the puzzle that was the 1986 World Champion New York Mets.

Fast Facts

Was Drafted by the Montreal Expos in the 3rd Round of the 1972 Draft.

On December 10, 1984 Traded by the Montreal Expos to the New York Mets for Hubie Brooks, Mike Fitzgerald, Herm Winningham and Floyd Youmans.

An 11 Time All-Star, including 4 times in his years as a Met from 1985-1988.

In his first game as a New York Met in 1985, He hit the Game Winning Home Run against Cardinals Pitcher Neil Allen in the 10th inning on Opening Day.

His single in the Top of the 10th inning with Two Outs in Game 6 of the 1986 World Series started the Winning Rally.

He was released by the Mets after the 1989 Season.

Inducted in the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2003, He has a Montreal Expos hat on his plaque, but the Mets as a gift to him gave him a replica of his plaque with him wearing a Mets hat. He had wanted to be wearing a Mets hat on his plaque, but the Hall thought differently.

Other Players of Note to Wear Number 8 as a Met
Yogi Berra (1965-1975), John Gibbons (1984), Dave Gallagher (1992-1993), Carlos Baerga (1997-1998), Cookie Rojas (1999-2000), Desi Relaford (2001)

At the end of the day, there is no question in my mind that Gary Carter is the Greatest Met of All Time to wear Number 8.


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Reactions From The 1986 Mets

FRANK CASHEN: “The genesis of the trade was that we wanted to add a big bat to the lineup. He did that right away, but perhaps more importantly was the way he handled our young pitchers. He was the perfect guy for so many reasons.” DAVEY JOHNSON: “Gary was a one-man scouting system. What people didn’t know was that he kept an individual book on every batter in the National...
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