New York Mets: The all-time top five closers in franchise history
4) Billy Wagner
From 2006-2008, the Mets were either in the postseason or fighting for a playoff spot until the very last day of the season, and Billy Wagner‘s dominance as a closer was a large reason for this. Many Mets had career years in 2006, including David Wright, Carlos Delgado, Jose Valentin, and Carlos Beltran, but what sometimes gets lost in the shuffle is how brilliant Wagner was that year as well.
In ’06, he notched 40 saves and pitched to a 2.24 ERA, striking out a whopping 92 batters in 72.1 innings. This led him to finish 6th in Cy Young voting that year, which I truly was not aware of until I wrote this article.
Wagner also had remarkable years in 2007 and 2008, making the All-Star team both seasons. He pitched to a 2.63 and 2.30 ERA in those years, respectively, and recorded a sparkling 0.894 WHIP in 2008.
Though Wagner’s performance in the 2006 NLCS wasn’t spectacular, his 3+ years in a Mets uniform were, in general, all excellent. Wagner’s Mets career helped bolster his potential case for a Hall of Fame induction one day (which I wholeheartedly support) and solidified his place as one of the best closers in franchise history.