Mets Hot Corner

NY Mets All-Time Top 10 Stolen Base Leaders

NY Mets All-Time Top 10 Stolen Base Leaders Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

This week’s NY Mets Top 10 features speed and the ability to get into scoring position. It’s been proven time and time again that if you have legs, manufacturing a run is as easy as getting on base with as little as a walk.

Speed has often been associated with momentum changes during the regular season, but some of it’s brightest moments have come during the baseball postseason, especially for the 1986 Mets.

Roger Cedeño NY Mets#10 Roger Cedeño
105 Stolen Bases (1999)
Cedeño was obtained by the Mets in 1998 in a deal in which the Dodgers obtained Todd Hundley. In 1999, Cedeño broke a Mets record by stealing 66 bases in a season (later broken by Jose Reyes). Besides his 66 stolen bases, Cedeño would bat .313, have an on-base percentage of .396, and a slugging percentage of .408.

Wally Backman NY Mets#9 Wally Backman
106 Stolen Bases (1980-1988)
Backman was the Mets’ first round pick in the 1977 draft and stole 32 bases in 1984, along with 30 in 1985. In 1986, Backman scored 67 runs, stole 13 bases and batted .320 for the first time in his career. He batted .333 in the World Series against the Boston Red Sox and led off for the Mets in the now famous tenth inning of Game 6.

Bud Harrelson NY Mets#8 Bud Harrelson
115 Stolen Bases (1965-1977)
Harrelson anchored the Mets’ infield for thirteen seasons, including their 1969 season, and 1973 pennant-winning season. His best years stealing the bag were ’70 through ’72 with a combined 63 bases. He was elected to two all-star teams during the 3 year span and even snagged a gold glove in 1971.

Lenny Dykstra NY Mets#7 Lenny Dykstra
116 Stolen Bases (1985-1989)
Lenny Dykstra was always a threat to steal, but his best years were 1986 through 1989 in which he averaged 29.5 stolen bases per year. Dykstra was nicknamed “Nails” for his hard-nosed personality and fearless play, and was also termed with Wally Backman as “the Wild Boys” for their scrappy play as spark plugs in the Mets lineup.

Lee Mazzilli NY Mets#6 Lee Mazzilli
152 Stolen Bases (1976-1982,1986-1989)
Mazzilli’s first stint as a Met was his best when it came to stealing bases. 1980 was his high point snagging 41 bases and leading the Mets that season with 162 hits, 31 doubles, 16 home runs, 76 RBIs, and 82 runs. Fun fact: The Mets offered third baseman Ray Knight to the Pirates for Mazzilli in 1986. The Pirates turned them down.

Darryl Strawberry NY Mets#5 Darryl Strawberry
191 Stolen Bases (1983-1990)
Throughout the 1980s and early 1990s, Strawberry was one of the most feared sluggers in the game, but he could also steal bases with the best of them. From 1984 through 1988, Strawberry averaged 29.2 stolen bases per year, with his best season being 1987 with 36 snags to go along with his 39 home runs.

David Wright NY Mets#4 David Wright
193 Stolen Bases (2004-present)
David Wright is going to be one of the best to ever wear the orange and blue. His best years were ’06, ’07, and ’09 with a total of 81 stolen bases, helping him earn 3 all-star nominations to go along with 2 gold gloves and 2 silver slugger awards. Can the captain earn a few more to crack the top 3?

Howard Johnson NY Mets#3 Howard Johnson
202 Stolen Bases (1985-1993)
Howard Johnson, or HoJo for short, was always a threat on the base paths averaging 30.3 stolen bases per year from 1987 through 1992. He was also a member of the 30/30 club by hitting at least 30 home runs in ’87, ’89, and ’91, earning 2 all-star nods and 2 silver slugger awards during that span.

Mookie Wilson NY Mets#2 Mookie Wilson
281 Stolen Bases (1980-1989)
Mookie Wilson took the speed game to a whole other level for the Mets, especially during the 1982 through 1984 seasons in which he stole a total of 158 bases. Wilson’s speed was never more important than Game 6 of the 1986 World Series where his speed and smart at bat played a factor in the infamous “Buckner” play.

José Reyes NY Mets#1 José Reyes
370 Stolen Bases (2003-2011)
José Reyes was a speed demon on the base paths. He holds the Mets single season record with 78 stolen bases in 2007, but he also stole 60 in ’05, 64 in ’06, and 56 in ’08, making him the first in franchise history to steal more than 50 bases in 3 consecutive years. To say Reyes’ speed is missed would be an understatement.

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