10. Steve Henderson, 1977
You may not remember Steve Henderson. I don’t, but that’s because I wasn’t born yet. Henderson barely lost out to Andre Dawson in Rookie of the Year voting for 1977 and was one of just six Mets that year to finish with over 2 WAR.
The Mets won a mere 64 games in 1977; no one on the team hit more than 12 homers (it was the 70s, but still), and Henderson’s 133 OPS+ was far and away the club’s best mark. Henderson’s .852 OPS is the second best of any Mets rookie.
Henderson retired after 1988 and was the hitting coach for the Rays from 2006 to 2009 and for the Phillies from 2013 to 2016.
9. Ike Davis, 2010
If it weren’t for that ankle injury he suffered in Colorado in 2011, perhaps we’d still be talking about Ike Davis. Nonetheless, our old friend truly deserves a place on this list. By bWAR, Ike was the 4th best player on the Mets in 2010. He always made good contact (15.9% soft contact rate), slugged 19 homers, was a plus defender (2nd best UZR among 1st basemen and 17th overall), and–get this–actually good against lefties (.805 OPS in 138 PA).
Davis’ eventual demise is a more sobering story of the 2010s Mets, but it’s still worth celebrating and appreciating the success he did have on the field. Before injuring his ankle on a collision in Coors Field in May 2011, Ike was on a freaking tear: he was on a 30 home run pace with a 1.124 OPS against righties and was vital to his team’s success (.776 SLG in wins, .352 in losses). According to Baseball Reference’s similarity scores, Davis’ sophomore season is most comparable to that of Paul Goldschmidt.
Unfortunately, Davis’ injury appeared to have a lasting effect. From 2012 on, he hit 55 homers in 482 games with a meager .224/.320/.393 slash line.