The 2016 New York Mets season was the franchise's 55th season. The Mets opened the season against their 2015 World Series opponent, the Kansas City Royals. This was the first time in the history of the league that World Series opponents played a rematch on Opening Day. This was made possible by interleague play being scattered throughout the season. Despite being below .500 (60–62) as late as August 19, the Mets went 27–13 in their final 40 games to make the postseason in consecutive seasons for the second time in franchise history. They lost to the San Francisco Giants in the Wild Card Game.
|2016 New York Mets|
|National League Wild Card|
|Major League affiliations|
|General manager(s)||Sandy Alderson|
|Local television||SportsNet New York|
WPIX (CW affiliate)
(Gary Cohen, Ron Darling, Keith Hernandez)
|Local radio||WOR (English)|
New York Mets Radio Network
(Howie Rose, Josh Lewin, Wayne Randazzo)
(Juan Alicea, Max Perez Jiminez)
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On December 2, 2015, bench coach Bob Geren left the Mets to join the Los Angeles Dodgers to fill the same position left by Tim Wallach who left to join the Miami Marlins in the same capacity. Geren served as the bench coach from 2011–2015. Dick Scott was hired to replace Geren on December 16, 2015. On December 3, the Mets signed pitcher Jim Henderson to a minor league deal. On December 9, the Mets traded pitcher Jon Niese to the Pittsburgh Pirates for second baseman Neil Walker. On December 10, the Mets signed Asdrúbal Cabrera to a two-year, $18.5 million contract. On December 14, the Mets signed Buddy Carlyle to a minor league deal for the third time since the offseason leading to the 2014 season. Duane Below was re-signed as well to a minor league deal. Marc Krauss was signed as well to a minor league deal. On December 15, the Mets signed Jerry Blevins to a one-year, $4 million contract with incentives. On December 16, Bartolo Colón was re-signed to a one-year, $7.25 million contract. To make room for Colón, the Mets designated Johnny Monell for assignment on December 18, when the deal became official. On December 23, Alejandro De Aza signed a one-year, $5.75 million contract with the Mets. On December 23, Kirk Nieuwenhuis was claimed off waivers by the Milwaukee Brewers.
On January 15, 2016, Nevin Ashley was signed to a minor league deal with an invite to spring training. On January 22, Antonio Bastardo was signed to a two-year, $12 million contract. On January 26, Yoenis Céspedes re-signed with the Mets on a three-year, $75 million contract, with an opt out after the first season. On January 22, Carlos Torres was designated for assignment by the Mets. On January 29, Neil Walker signed a one-year, $10.55 million deal avoiding arbitration. On January 30, the Mets placed Torres on waivers. Torres cleared waivers on February 1 and elected free agency.
On February 2, 2016, Darrell Ceciliani was traded to the Toronto Blue Jays for cash considerations. On February 8, 2016, Roger Bernadina signed with the Mets on a minor-league contract. On February 12, Jenrry Mejía was permanently banned from the MLB after his third performance-enhancing drugs (PED) violation. He became the first player to be banned for life due to PED use, and one of only two living people to be permanently banned, the other being Pete Rose. Mejía is allowed to apply for reinstatement after one year. However, he must sit out a minimum of two years, meaning that he will not be eligible to pitch again until 2018 at the earliest.
|Opening Day starters|
The Mets began their 2016 season by losing a close one in Kansas City, falling 4-3 at the hands of the Royals. Matt Harvey, making the Opening Day start, was hit around by the Royals, who took a 4-0 lead into the 8th. However, the Mets scored 3 runs off Joakim Soria to make the game close. In the top of the ninth, facing Royals closer Wade Davis, the Mets put runners at the corners with one out, but Davis struck out David Wright and Yoenis Céspedes to close out the Royals' opening day victory.
Following a narrow Opening Day defeat, the Mets split the series in Kansas City behind a scoreless outing by Noah Syndergaard and a two-run home run by Neil Walker. The Mets then returned home and won their home opener 7-2 against the Philadelphia Phillies. Jacob deGrom pitched six strong innings, while Walker and Michael Conforto both had multiple RBI's. The Mets then went on a brief four-game losing streak which dropped them to 2-5. During the slump, the offense struggled to produce. However, the offense caught fire throughout the rest of the month, led by Neil Walker, who hit .315 with 9 home runs and 19 RBI's in his first month with the team. The Mets only scored less than four runs in a game once in April after April 15, and finished the opening month of the season with a 15-7 record.
After a surging April, the Mets began to cool down in May. On May 7, Bartolo Colón became the oldest player to hit his first career home run at 42 years and 349 days old. It came off San Diego Padres pitcher, James Shields in a game against San Diego. Mets pitchers continued to hit when on May 11, Noah Syndergaard hit two home runs off of Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher, Kenta Maeda. The second home run gave the Mets the lead in the 5th inning. On May 27, the Mets returned to Citi Field to play the Los Angeles Dodgers in what was the first game in a 1986 World Championship 30th Anniversary Weekend Celebration. New York won the first game on a Curtis Granderson walk-off home run, but lost the next two games, highlighted by Noah Syndergaard throwing behind Dodgers second baseman Chase Utley, an act that was seen as intentional as the Mets were trying to get revenge for Utley's questionable slide against the Mets in 2015 NLDS. In the series finale, Colón and Clayton Kershaw battled on ESPN Sunday Night Baseball. However, Mets closer Jeurys Familia allowed three runs in the 9th to lose the game. The Mets finished the month with a record of 14-15. This dropped them to second place in the NL East to the Washington Nationals, who would never relinquish their lead in the division.
The Mets continued to struggle in June, in part due to an offense not producing many runs, in particular with runners in scoring position. Neil Walker, who had led the Mets in most offensive categories for the first two months, began to have a drop off in production. The Mets also could not beat teams in their division, getting swept by the Braves and Nationals. Pitching also became an issue for the Mets. While Bartolo Colón and Noah Syndergaard continued to pitch well, Steven Matz, Jacob deGrom and Matt Harvey would not win a game in June. Also that month, Lucas Duda and David Wright went down with back and neck injuries, respectively. While Duda would return to the Mets later in the year, Wright would wind up missing the entire season. Duda would be replaced by James Loney, and the Mets brought back former shortstop José Reyes to fill in for Wright at third base. The move was greeted with criticism, as Reyes had been arrested for domestic violence in the offseason. However, Reyes filled in adequately, although he would not make his season debut until July 5. At the end of the month, following a sweep at the hands of the Nationals, it was announced that both Steven Matz and Noah Syndergaard had been pitching with bone spurs in their throwing arms.
The Mets returned home to Citi Field to start the month and swept a four-game series from the Chicago Cubs, similar to what they had done in the 2015 NLCS. Only July 4, against the Miami Marlins, the Mets fell behind 6-0 in the 4th inning, but would rally to win the game 8-6. The Mets' celebration was to be short-lived, however, as it was announced that Matt Harvey was placed on the 15-day DL. Shortly after, he opted to have season-ending surgery to resolve a condition called thoracic outlet syndrome. José Reyes would return to the Mets on July 5, just in time for a pivotal four game series with the divisional rival Washington Nationals before the All-Star Break. In the first game of the series, the Mets would hit four home runs to win 9-7. The following day, it was announced that Bartolo Colón had been selected to replace Madison Bumgarner in the 2016 MLB All-Star Game, joining teammates Noah Syndergaard, Jeurys Familia and Yoenis Céspedes. However, hours after this was announced, Syndergaard and Céspedes were both injured in a 3-1 loss to the Nationals. These injuries would force the two to miss the All-Star Game, which they were projected to start in. After the All-Star Break, Jacob deGrom pitched arguably the best game of his young career, as he dominated the Phillies in a complete game shutout, while striking out 7 batters. The Mets continued to play well until the final week of the month, when All-Star closer Jeurys Familia, who had converted all of his 36 save opportunities in the season at that point, uncharacteristically blew the saves in back to back games against the St. Louis Cardinals and Colorado Rockies. The Mets finished the month with a 54-50 record, and it became clear that GM Sandy Alderson would have to make a deadline trade if the Mets were to make the postseason.
In August, Sandy Alderson would come through with a deal at the trade deadline, as he acquired outfielder Jay Bruce from the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for second baseman Dilson Herrera and pitching prospect Max Wotell. Bruce would make his Mets debut the following day, in a 7-1 win over the crosstown rival New York Yankees in the second game of the yearly four game Subway Series. Bruce would help the Mets tie the series, as he hit a go-ahead three run home run at Yankee Stadium in the series finale in a 4-1 Mets victory. However, Bruce's initial spark would quickly burn out, as he began to slump, only adding to the Mets' offensive struggles. To make matters worse, star outfielder Yoenis Céspedes, who undoubtedly had been the best hitter on the team, was diagnosed with strained right quadriceps, and was placed on the 15-day DL. Without him, the Mets' record fell under .500 after an 8-6 loss to the San Diego Padres on August 12. However, the Mets would rally to win the next two games over the Padres, highlighted by Steven Matz taking a no-hitter into the 8th inning on August 14. Matz struck out 8 batters in that game, which would ultimately wind up being his last game of the year, as he would later undergo surgery for a bone spur in the left elbow, therefore ending his season. The Mets would also lose second baseman Neil Walker for the season after he required surgery to fix a herniated disc in his back. Luckily for the Mets, Céspedes would return to the team on August 19 in San Francisco against the Giants, in what would be considered the turning point of the Mets season. The following day, with the Mets record at 60-62, Céspedes hit two home runs in a 9-5 victory, and homered again the next night on ESPN Sunday Night Baseball, as the Mets would get their record back to .500. They then took series from the St. Louis Cardinals and the Philadelphia Phillies. New York would also win three of four against the Miami Marlins heading into September, highlighted by a Céspedes walk off home run in a 2-1 win over Miami on August 29.
Heading into the final month of the regular season, the Mets remained in a race for a Wild-Card spot along with the Marlins, the San Francisco Giants, and the St. Louis Cardinals. To start the month, the Mets sent out Jacob deGrom to start against the Marlins, looking to close out a four-game sweep at Citi Field. However, deGrom struggled as the Mets lost the series finale 6-4. It was later revealed that these struggles were injury related, and deGrom underwent season-ending surgery on his ulnar nerve in order to relieve discomfort in his elbow and numbness in his fingers which had plagued him during the season. The loss of deGrom meant that the Mets had lost 3/5 of their Opening Day starting rotation. In addition to this, Zack Wheeler, who was expected to return in July following Tommy John surgery that kept him sidelined for the entire 2015 season, would suffer setbacks in a minor league rehab assignment, and never returned in 2016. Fortunately for the Mets, Noah Syndergaard and Bartolo Colón managed to stay healthy throughout the entire season, and minor leaguers Seth Lugo and Robert Gsellman would provide great starts while filling in for the injured stars down the stretch, helping guide the Mets to multiple series wins throughout the final month. Some pivotal moments of September for the Mets included a weekend sweep at home over the Minnesota Twins, highlighted by Curtis Granderson hitting a game-tying home run in the 11th inning and a walk-off home run in the 12th inning in the second game of the series. Later on in the home stand, after the Mets were swept by the visiting rival Atlanta Braves, New York began a four-game series against the Phillies with a 9-8 win in 11 innings. This game would go down as one of the best games of the entire MLB season, as it featured multiple lead changes and comebacks by the Mets. The Phillies held a 6-4 lead heading into the bottom of the 9th, and with the Mets down to their final strike, José Reyes hit a game-tying two run home run to send the game to extra innings. In the 11th inning, after the Phillies scored two runs to take an 8-6 lead, Asdrúbal Cabrera hit a walk-off three run home run, capped off with a dramatic bat flip celebration. The Mets would end their regular season home slate by taking three of four from Philadelphia, including a 17-0 win in the home finale. After this, the Mets took two of three in Miami before heading to Philadelphia to end the season, needing to win the series in order to qualify for a Wild Card spot.
The New York Mets played the San Francisco Giants in the National League Wild Card game on October 5, 2016, and was presented on ESPN. The game was notable for two quality pitching performances by the Mets' Noah Syndergaard, who pitched 7 innings, allowed 0 runs on two hits, striking out 10 batters, and Giants' Madison Bumgarner, who pitched a complete-game shutout on 4 hits while striking out six. Both teams failed to produce any runs for 8 innings, as Noah Syndergaard and Addison Reed held the giants to no runs, while Madison Bumgarner did the same by himself. During the 9th inning, Conor Gillaspie, Giants' third basemen, hit a go-ahead 3-run homer in the top of the 9th off of Mets' closer Jeurys Familia, placing the Mets in a three-run deficit that would eventually cost them the game. Madison Bumgarner would earn the win and Jeurys Familia would receive the loss. The Giants would go on to lose to the eventual World Series Champion Chicago Cubs in 4 games in the National League Division Series.
Games played as of October 1, 2016.
|New York Mets||87||75||0.537||8||44–37||43–38|
|Los Angeles Dodgers||91||71||0.562|
|Wild Card teams
(Top 2 qualify for 1-game playoff)
|New York Mets||87||75||0.537||—|
|San Francisco Giants||87||75||0.537||—|
|St. Louis Cardinals||86||76||0.531||1|
|San Diego Padres||68||94||0.420||19|
2016 National League Records
Source: NL Standings Head-to-Head
|Mets Win||Mets Loss||Game Postponed|
|Bold = Mets team member|
|2016 Game Log|
Overall: 87–75 (Home: 44–37; Away: 43–38)
April: 15–7 (Home: 7–4; Away: 8–3)
May: 14–15 (Home: 8–7; Away: 6–8)
June: 12–15 (Home: 5–5; Away: 7–10)
July: 13–13 (Home: 8–9; Away: 5–4)
August: 15–14 (Home: 8–6; Away: 7–8)
September/October: 18–11 (Home: 8–6; Away 10–5)
|2016 New York Mets Postseason (0–1)|
|2016 New York Mets|
(Updated as of 10/20/16)
Players in bold are on the active roster.
Note: G = Games played; AB = At bats; R = Runs; H = Hits; 2B = Doubles; 3B = Triples; HR = Home runs; RBI = Runs batted in; BB = Walks; SO = Strikeouts; Avg. = Batting average; OBP = On Base Percentage; SLG = Slugging Percentage; SB = Stolen bases
|Alejandro De Aza||130||234||31||48||9||0||6||25||26||67||.205||.297||.321||4|
(Updated as of 10/20/16)
Players in bold are on the active roster.
Note: W = Wins; L = Losses; ERA = Earned run average; G = Games pitched; GS = Games started; SV = Saves; IP = Innings pitched; R = Runs allowed; ER = Earned runs allowed; HR = Home runs allowed; BB = Walks allowed; K = Strikeouts
|AAA||Las Vegas 51s||Pacific Coast League||Wally Backman|
|AA||Binghamton Mets||Eastern League||Pedro López|
|A-Advanced||St. Lucie Mets||Florida State League||Luis Rojas|
|A||Columbia Fireflies||South Atlantic League||José Leger|
|A-Short Season||Brooklyn Cyclones||New York–Penn League||Tom Gamboa|
|Rookie||Kingsport Mets||Appalachian League||Luis Rivera|
|Rookie||GCL Mets||Gulf Coast League||José Carreño|
|Rookie||DSL Mets 1 & 2||Dominican Summer League||Manny Martínez|
Part of the 2016 Major League Baseball season
|American League teams|
|National League teams|
2016 MLB season by team
|Culture and lore|
|Division titles (6)|
|Wild Card (3)|
|Minor league affiliates|