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1. TOM SEAVERStarting pitcher, 1967-76, 1983There is no (Credit: Getty Images)

1. TOM SEAVER
Starting pitcher, 1967-76, 1983
There is no question about where he ranks in the 48 years of Mets history. In a way, it's almost easy to overlook how good Seaver was because he was and is such a part of the low-key scene in Queens. But, aside from all the Mets records he still holds, remember that he went into the Hall of Fame with the highest first-ballot percentage of anyone in history.

Tom Seaver

Photos of former Mets pitcher Tom Seaver

TOM SEAVER April 13, 1967 vs. Pittsburgh ND,
(Credit: AP)

TOM SEAVER
April 13, 1967 vs. Pittsburgh
ND, 5.1 innings, 6 hits, 2 runs, 4 walks, 8 strikeouts. |

Tom Seaver went into the Hall of Fame
(Credit: Getty Images)

Tom Seaver went into the Hall of Fame with the highest first-ballot percentage of anyone in history.

CAREER STRIKEOUTS: TOM SEAVER, 2,541 Runner up: Dwight
(Credit: AP)

CAREER STRIKEOUTS: TOM SEAVER, 2,541
Runner up: Dwight Gooden, 1,875
Active leader: Johan Santana, 496


A pitcher would have to average 170 strikeouts for 15 seasons, or 200 whiffs for almost 13 seasons, to catch Seaver. Today's top K guys average around 220 per season, so it's not out of the question, but it's not likely that any current Met is going to threaten Tom Terrific.

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SINGLE-SEASON INNINGS PITCHED: TOM SEAVER (1970), 290.2 Runner
(Credit: Newsday file photo)

SINGLE-SEASON INNINGS PITCHED: TOM SEAVER (1970), 290.2
Runner up: Tom Seaver (1973), 290

Seaver owns seven of the top eight spots in this category. (Sixth place belongs to Dwight Gooden, who threw 276 2/3 innings in 1985.) Part of what made Seaver so great was his durability. He was a classic workhorse ace. He threw 250 innings or more in nine of his 10 1/2 Mets seasons. The next time someone tells you a modern-day starter who throws 200-plus innings is a workhorse, remind them about players like Tom Seaver.

SINGLE-SEASON STRIKEOUTS: TOM SEAVER (1971), 289 Runner up:
(Credit: AP)

SINGLE-SEASON STRIKEOUTS: TOM SEAVER (1971), 289
Runner up: Tom Seaver (1970), 283

Seaver outduels even Dwight "Dr. K" Gooden for the top two spots on the list. (Gooden is third and fourth with 276 strikeouts in 1984 and 268 K's in 1985). In his 35 starts in 1971, "The Franchise" struck out 10 or more batters 13 times. His career-high (and Mets record) of 19 strikeouts came in 1970, when he fanned 19 Padres batters on April 22. That record was later tied by David Cone in 1991.

SINGLE-SEASON WHIP: TOM SEAVER (1971), 0.946 Runner up:
(Credit: AP)

SINGLE-SEASON WHIP: TOM SEAVER (1971), 0.946
Runner up: Pedro Martinez (2005), 0.949

The 1971 season was one of three in which Seaver allowed fewer than one walk or hit per inning in his Mets career. Pedro Martinez's appearance on the list is less surprising when you consider that he also owns the best single-season WHIP in baseball history: 0.737 with the Red Sox in 2000.

SINGLE-SEASON COMPLETE GAMES: TOM SEAVER (1971), 21 Runner
(Credit: Dick Kraus)

SINGLE-SEASON COMPLETE GAMES: TOM SEAVER (1971), 21
Runner up: Tom Seaver (1970), 19

The top five slots on this leaderboard belong to Seaver. Next on the list is Jerry Koosman, who completed 17 games in 1968 and 1976. In 1971, Seaver finished second in NL Cy Young balloting despite an MLB-leading 1.76 ERA and 0.946 WHIP and an NL-best 289 strikeouts. The award instead went to the Cubs' Ferguson Jenkins, who won 24 games but had fewer strikeouts and an ERA that was a full point higher (2.77).

SINGLE-SEASON WINS: TOM SEAVER (1969), 25 Runner up:
(Credit: AP)

SINGLE-SEASON WINS: TOM SEAVER (1969), 25
Runner up: Dwight Gooden (1985), 24

Tom Seaver earned the nickname "The Franchise" as he almost singlehandedly made the Mets contenders in the late 1960s and early 70s. That was never more true than in the miracle season of 1969, when Seaver won his last eight starts of the season, and each of his last 10 decisions. The last Met to win 20 was Frank Viola in 1990.

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CAREER WHIP: TOM SEAVER, 1.076 Runner up: Bret
(Credit: AP)

CAREER WHIP: TOM SEAVER, 1.076
Runner up: Bret Saberhagen, 1.079
Active leader: Johan Santana, 1.175


No stat better expresses pitching dominance than WHIP (walks and hits per inning pitched), so it's no surprise to find Tom Seaver on top of this list. He led the majors in the category three times. While WHIP often rewards a pitcher who keeps his walk totals low, Seaver was not known as being a dominant control pitcher. Instead, he kept hitters off base by striking them out and limiting hits. He had five one-hitters and seven two-hitters as a Met.

CAREER SHUTOUTS: TOM SEAVER, 44 Runners up: Jerry
(Credit: UPI)

CAREER SHUTOUTS: TOM SEAVER, 44
Runners up: Jerry Koosman and Jon Matlack, 26
Active leader: Johan Santana, 4


Another untouchable record. Seaver averaged four shutouts a year over his first 10 seasons with the Mets. Meanwhile, the active Mets leader, Johan Santana, has four in his three healthy seasons -- and he's the only current Met with more than one in his career.

CAREER ERA: TOM SEAVER, 2.57 (min. 500 innings
(Credit: Getty Images)

CAREER ERA: TOM SEAVER, 2.57
(min. 500 innings pitched)
Runner up: Jesse Orosco, 2.73
Active leader: Johan Santana, 2.85


Seaver is the only pitcher in Mets history to finish a season with an ERA under 2.00. He led the majors with a 1.76 ERA in 1971 and did it again in 1973 with a 2.08 ERA. In his 11 1/2 seasons here, he had an ERA over 3.00 just twice -- one of those times coming in 1983 when he posted a 3.55 ERA at age 38.

Co-hosts Dick Schaap, right, and Joe Namath, center,
(Credit: AP)

Co-hosts Dick Schaap, right, and Joe Namath, center, ask a question of New York Mets pitcher Tom Seaver on the premiere of "The Joe Namath Show" on Oct. 10, 1969.

NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 11: 2011 Rock
(Credit: Getty/Simon Russell)

NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 11: 2011 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee Darlene Love and Major League Baseball Hall of Famer Tom Seaver lead the ceremony at the Citi Military Appreciation Day event to honor U.S. veterans and current service members at Citi Pond in Bryant Park on November 11, 2011 in New York City. (Photo by Simon Russell/Getty Images)

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NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 11: 2011 Rock
(Credit: Getty/Simon Russell)

NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 11: 2011 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee Darlene Love and Major League Baseball Hall of Famer Tom Seaver lead the ceremony at the Citi Military Appreciation Day event to honor U.S. veterans and current service members at Citi Pond in Bryant Park on November 11, 2011 in New York City. (Photo by Simon Russell/Getty Images)

DATE: June 15, 1977 TRADE: The Mets trade
(Credit: Getty Images)

DATE: June 15, 1977
TRADE: The Mets trade Tom Seaver to the Cincinnati Reds for Pat Zachry, Steve Henderson, Doug Flynn and Dan Norman
OUTCOME: Dubbed “the Midnight Massacre,” the Mets traded the greatest player in franchise history to Cincinnati and got mediocre value in return. Seaver reportedly demanded a trade because his wife was jealous of the wife of Nolan Ryan, a former Met pitcher who had gotten a large contract from the California Angels. After the trade, Seaver continued his greatness with the Reds, with whom he won 14 games in 20 starts in ’77. “Tom Terrific” also pitched a no-hitter in 1978, a feat the Mets organization still lacks.

Tom Seaver is glad the Mets are finally
(Credit: Kathy Kmonicek)

Tom Seaver is glad the Mets are finally honoring their great players and teams of the past at Citi Field. (File photo, 2009)

TOM SEAVER, PITCHER Career stats: 311–205, 2.86 ERA
(Credit: AP file)

TOM SEAVER, PITCHER
Career stats: 311–205, 2.86 ERA
Mets stats: 198-124, 2.57 ERA
There's a reason they called him "Tom Terrific" and "The Franchise." Seaver was the unquestioned ace of the staff from 1967 until his shocking trade in 1977. He pitched a 10-inning complete game in Game 4 of the 1969 World Series to put the team a heartbeat away from a title. During the 1971 season, he led the majors with a 1.76 ERA in 35 starts and struck out a career-high 289.

He still owns team records for wins (198), ERA (2.57), strikeouts (2,541), complete games and shutouts. He is the only Mets player to have his number retired, and is the only player in Cooperstown who wears a Mets cap on his bust.

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