In “Hardball Retrospective: Evaluating Scouting and Development Outcomes for the Modern-Era Franchises”, I placed every ballplayer in the modern era (from 1901-present) on their original team. Therefore, Ozzie Smith is listed on the Padres roster for the duration of his career while the Senators II / Rangers declare Jeff Burroughs and the Rays claim David Price. I calculated revised standings for every season based entirely on the performance of each team’s “original” players. I discuss every team’s “original” players and seasons at length along with organizational performance with respect to the Amateur Draft (or First-Year Player Draft), amateur free agent signings and other methods of player acquisition. Season standings, WAR and Win Shares totals for the “original” teams are compared against the “actual” team results to assess each franchise’s scouting, development and general management skills.
Expanding on my research for the book, the following series of articles will reveal the finest single-season rosters for every Major League organization based on overall rankings in OWAR and OWS along with the general managers and scouting directors that constructed the teams. “Hardball Retrospective” is available in digital format on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, GooglePlay, iTunes and KoboBooks. The paperback edition is available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble and CreateSpace. Supplemental Statistics, Charts and Graphs along with a discussion forum are offered at TuataraSoftware.com.
Don Daglow (Intellivision World Series Major League Baseball, Earl Weaver Baseball, Tony LaRussa Baseball) contributed the foreword for Hardball Retrospective. The foreword and preview of my book are accessible here.
OWAR – Wins Above Replacement for players on “original” teams
OWS – Win Shares for players on “original” teams
OPW% – Pythagorean Won-Loss record for the “original” teams
The 1986 New York Mets OWAR: 59.3 OWS: 299 OPW%: .589
GM Frank Cashen acquired 54% (27/50) of the ballplayers on the 1986 Mets roster while Joe McDonald procured 34% (17/50). Based on the revised standings the “Original” 1986 Mets cruised to the pennant with 95 victories, easily outdistancing the runner-up Phillies and pacing the National League in OWAR and OWS.
The Metropolitans’ rotation featured two future Hall of Fame hurlers (Tom Seaver and Nolan Ryan) alongside the 1985 and 1986 NL Cy Young Award winners (Dwight Gooden and Mike Scott). Scott wielded a wicked split-finger fastball against the opposition and the results were astonishing. He led the Senior Circuit with a 2.22 ERA, 0.923 WHIP and whiffed 306 batsmen in 275.1 innings. Gooden aka “Dr. K” followed his dominant 1985 campaign with a 17-6 record and a 2.84 ERA while recording 200 strikeouts for the third consecutive season. Floyd Youmans tallied 202 punch-outs and notched 13 victories despite allowing a League-worst 118 bases on balls. Roger McDowell posted 22 saves and accrued 14 victories in relief. Jeff “Terminator” Reardon contributed 35 saves and Calvin Schiraldi fashioned a 1.41 ERA while closing out nine contests. Greg A. Harris added 10 wins and 20 saves as a part-time closer.
|Greg A. Harris||RP||2.16||14.78|
|Roy Lee Jackson||RP||0.55||3.57|
|Dave Von Ohlen||RP||0.07||0.82|
Lenny “Nails” Dykstra achieved full-time status in his sophomore season and responded with a .295 BA with 31 stolen bases. Darryl Strawberry slammed 27 long balls, knocked in 93 runs and pilfered 28 bags from the cleanup slot. Jody Davis drilled 27 doubles and 21 circuit clouts. Mookie Wilson (.289, 25 SB) wreaked havoc on the basepaths and Wally Backman contributed a .320 BA. Kevin “World” Mitchell delivered a .277 BA with 22 two-base knocks in a utility role.
Seaver ranked sixth among pitchers according to Bill James in “The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract.” Eight ballplayers from the 1986 Mets roster placed in the “NBJHBA” top 100 rankings including Ryan (24th-P), Dykstra (44th-CF), Strawberry (47th-RF), Mitchell (51st-LF), Gooden (76th-P), Brooks (89th-3B) and Davis (90th-C).
|Brian J. Giles||2B||-0.06||0.28|
The “Original” 1986 New York Mets roster
|NAME||POS||WAR||WS||General Manager||Scouting Director|
|Mike Scott||SP||8.3||26.61||Joe McDonald|
|Lenny Dykstra||CF||4.94||23.9||Frank Cashen||Joe McIlvane|
|Dwight Gooden||SP||4.06||17.76||Frank Cashen||Joe McIlvane|
|Darryl Strawberry||RF||3.94||24.43||Frank Cashen||Pete Gebrian|
|Mookie Wilson||LF||3.38||16.81||Joe McDonald|
|Tom Seaver||SP||2.79||10.2||George Weiss|
|Floyd Youmans||SP||2.68||13.06||Frank Cashen||Joe McIlvane|
|Tim Leary||SP||2.47||10.83||Joe McDonald|
|Hubie Brooks||SS||2.43||14.8||Joe McDonald|
|Calvin Schiraldi||RP||2.37||10.45||Frank Cashen||Joe McIlvane|
|Wally Backman||2B||2.28||16.38||Joe McDonald|
|Nolan Ryan||SP||2.26||11.31||George Weiss|
|Greg Harris||RP||2.16||14.78||Joe McDonald|
|Kevin Mitchell||LF||2.12||14.39||Frank Cashen||Pete Gebrian|
|Jody Davis||C||2.02||18.16||Joe McDonald|
|Neil Allen||SP||1.72||7.95||Joe McDonald|
|Alex Trevino||C||1.44||7.6||Bob Scheffing||Nelson Burbink|
|Roger McDowell||RP||1.15||15.71||Frank Cashen||Joe McIlvane|
|Juan Berenguer||RP||1.07||5.42||Joe McDonald|
|Mike Fitzgerald||C||0.96||7.43||Joe McDonald|
|Rick Anderson||SP||0.81||3.75||Joe McDonald|
|Lee Mazzilli||LF||0.69||5.21||Bob Scheffing||Nelson Burbink|
|John Gibbons||C||0.57||2.38||Frank Cashen||Pete Gebrian|
|Roy Lee Jackson||RP||0.55||3.57||Joe McDonald|
|Rick Aguilera||SP||0.54||5.91||Frank Cashen||Joe McIlvane|
|Jose Oquendo||SS||0.53||4.21||Joe McDonald|
|Jay Tibbs||SP||0.51||7.68||Frank Cashen||Pete Gebrian|
|Cliff Speck||RP||0.26||1.78||Bob Scheffing||Nelson Burbink|
|Dave Magadan||1B||0.19||1.25||Frank Cashen||Joe McIlvane|
|Dave Von Ohlen||RP||0.07||0.82||Joe McDonald|
|Rusty Tillman||RF||0.07||1.07||Joe McDonald|
|John Pacella||RP||0.03||0.51||Bob Scheffing||Nelson Burbink|
|Rick Ownbey||SW||0.02||1.61||Frank Cashen||Pete Gebrian|
|Stan Jefferson||CF||0.02||0.51||Frank Cashen||Joe McIlvane|
|Jeff Bittiger||SP||-0.03||0.48||Frank Cashen||Pete Gebrian|
|Doug Sisk||RP||-0.03||4.2||Frank Cashen||Pete Gebrian|
|Wes Gardner||RP||-0.04||0||Frank Cashen||Joe McIlvane|
|Randy Myers||RP||-0.05||0.3||Frank Cashen||Joe McIlvane|
|Brian Giles||2B||-0.06||0.28||Joe McDonald|
|Eddie Williams||LF||-0.09||0||Frank Cashen||Joe McIlvane|
|Kevin Elster||SS||-0.12||0.72||Frank Cashen||Joe McIlvane|
|Barry Lyons||C||-0.13||0||Frank Cashen||Joe McIlvane|
|Jeff Reardon||RP||-0.17||10.26||Joe McDonald|
|LaSchelle Tarver||CF||-0.32||0.18||Frank Cashen||Pete Gebrian|
|Herm Winningham||CF||-0.34||2.6||Frank Cashen||Joe McIlvane|
|Ronn Reynolds||C||-0.35||0.98||Frank Cashen||Pete Gebrian|
|Bill Latham||SP||-0.35||0||Frank Cashen||Joe McIlvane|
|Dave Cochrane||3B||-0.42||0.24||Frank Cashen||Joe McIlvane|
|Manuel Lee||2B||-0.44||0.91||Frank Cashen||Joe McIlvane|
|Billy Beane||LF||-1.25||0.94||Frank Cashen||Pete Gebrian|
The “Original” 1990 Mets OWAR: 49.2 OWS: 294 OPW%: .551
Lenny Dykstra (.325/9/60) swiped 33 bases, led the National League with 192 base hits and a .418 OBP while earning his first All-Star appearance. Darryl Strawberry launched 37 long balls and recorded a career-high 108 RBI. Kevin Mitchell belted 35 round-trippers and plated 93 baserunners following his MVP campaign in 1989. Dave Magadan registered a .328 BA and Gregg Jefferies paced the circuit with 40 two-baggers. Nolan Ryan aka “The Ryan Express” whiffed the most batsmen (232) for the fourth consecutive year. Dwight Gooden delivered a 19-7 mark with 223 strikeouts. Randy Myers notched 31 saves with a 2.08 ERA and finished fifth in the balloting for the NL Cy Young Award. Rick Aguilera saved 32 contests and fashioned an ERA of 2.76.
The “Original” 1979 Expos
References and Resources
James, Bill. The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract. New York, NY.: The Free Press, 2001. Print.
James, Bill, with Jim Henzler. Win Shares. Morton Grove, Ill.: STATS, 2002. Print.
Derek Bain is a New Jersey native with a passion for baseball, statistics, computers and video games. He has written a number of articles for Fangraphs and Seamheads, and enjoys spending quality time with his family.