Howard Johnson is one of those Mets players you have to love and adore. As great a guy as he was a player, “HoJo” had many memorable moments in his playing days. The record books show it, too.
Johnson’s 1989 season was a big one. The 8.0 WAR on offense is the highest number anyone has posted in team history. He did this with 80 total bases (tied for a Mets record) and other fat numbers. Included are 36 home runs, 101 RBI and a league-best 104 runs scored.
Two years later, Johnson had a similarly productive year. Although his slash line wasn’t nearly as impressive, he did league the lead with 38 home runs and 117 RBI.
Johnson wasn’t just swinging for the fences. In 1989, he stole 41 bases, while also knocking 41 doubles. It was a remarkable season any way you look at it.
As a member of the Mets, Howard finished with a .251/.341/.459 batting line and 192 home runs. More surprising still, are the 202 stolen bases he mustered. We don’t often think of Johnson as a base thief. Numbers tell a different tale. He was a well-rounded ballplayer who could do just about anything needed.
The only thing Johnson is missing from his time with the Mets is a productive postseason. He’s one of those rare offensive players who have more World Series rings than hits. The lone hit he did have occurred in the 1988 NLCS.
Minus this one aspect, Johnson is still a top Mets player. The regular season production proves it.