Mets History: When long man Pat Mahomes ate up innings in 2000

Pat Mahomes was an important member of the 2000 New York Mets as the innings-eater they could count on to get them through games.

The name Patrick Mahomes is one of the most popular in sports right now. Two decades ago, his father Pat Mahomes was a member of the 2000 New York Mets.

I’m sure you know all of this by now. Just as you know Todd Frazier is from Toms River and Kirk Nieuwenhuis played football, you know the Mets once employed the quarterback of the 2020 Super Bowl Champion Kansas City Chiefs.

Mahomes’ 2000 season was far from spectacular. It didn’t compare to the amazingly productive 1999 campaign he put together which included an 8-0 record out of the bullpen and 3.68 ERA.

For the 2000 World Series-bound Mets, Mahomes was 5-3 with a 5.46 ERA. He did give the team five starts but spent most of the year as the long man out of the bullpen.

Control was an issue throughout Mahomes’ career. In 2000, he averaged more than 6 walks per nine.

This didn’t help his overall numbers. Mahomes was often pitching with men on base. The more clustered the base paths got, the easier it was for opposing teams to do damage to his ERA. Too often in 2000, the opponent did find a way to dent up Mahomes’ season totals.

Even as a less-effective pitcher than he was a year prior, Mahomes carved out an important niche as an innings eater. He tossed 94 total frames—one for each victory the team had in 2000.

Each win Mahomes had was important. The team had a serious shot at winning the division over the Atlanta Braves. Unfortunately, they fell one shy of the National League East powerhouse who finished the year with 95 victories.

In his final game with the Mets, Mahomes exited the Shea Stadium bullpen in the 11th inning of a 2-2 game versus the Montreal Expos. The October 1 appearance was the last day of the regular season. It became Mahomes’ swan song in New York baseball as well.

The final three innings of Mahomes’ Mets career helped the team secure a victory. Mahomes earned the win thanks to a dramatic finish in the bottom of the 13th.

After a walk to Benny Agbayani to begin the inning, Mahomes singled. The next batter, Jorge Velandia, reached on a throwing error by the third baseman. Agbayani crossed the plate and the Mets ended the year with another win.

Unfortunately, the long reliever role wasn’t a spot the Mets could afford on the postseason roster. Because they didn’t need as many starters, they chose to go forward with Glendon Rusch as the innings-eater option out of the bullpen when needed.

Mahomes never got to pitch in the 2000 postseason. His impact on the team still helped get them there thanks to his ability to pitch on a regular basis and for more innings than most relievers can.

Next: Todd Zeile had big cleats to fill in 2000

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In any year where a team makes it to the finals, there are always grinders like Mahomes helping the team get there.

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