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New York Mets History

Past Mets starters known for playing two positions in their career

New York Mets second baseman Edgardo Alfonzo (R) chases down Atlanta Braves baserunner Quilvio Veras (L) after Veras was picked off of first base by Mets pitcher Glendon Rusch in the top of the first inning 02 July, 2000 at Shea Stadium in Flushing, NY. (ELECTRONIC IMAGE) AFP PHOTO/Matt CAMPBELL (Photo by MATT CAMPBELL / AFP) (Photo by MATT CAMPBELL/AFP via Getty Images)
New York Mets second baseman Edgardo Alfonzo (R) chases down Atlanta Braves baserunner Quilvio Veras (L) after Veras was picked off of first base by Mets pitcher Glendon Rusch in the top of the first inning 02 July, 2000 at Shea Stadium in Flushing, NY. (ELECTRONIC IMAGE) AFP PHOTO/Matt CAMPBELL (Photo by MATT CAMPBELL / AFP) (Photo by MATT CAMPBELL/AFP via Getty Images)
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CINCINNATI, UNITED STATES: The Cincinnati Reds’ Aaron Boone (17) slides safely into 2nd on a steal ahead of the tag by the New York Mets’ Edgardo Alfonzo in the third inning 22 April 2001 at Cinergy Field in Cincinnati. The Mets beat the reds 5 to 1. AFP PHOTO/Mike Simons (Photo credit should read MIKE SIMONS/AFP via Getty Images)

Edgardo Alfonzo

Known affectionately as “Fonzie,” Edgardo Alfonzo was a fixture of the Mets’ famously good defensive infield in the late 1990s. He made his major league debut with the Mets in 1995, splitting his time between third base and second base in his rookie season. This pattern would continue throughout his Mets career, where he continued to be defensively valuable at both positions, year after year.

Wherever he played on defense, Alfonzo was consistently among the league leaders in fielding percentage. He also finished second in NL Gold Glove voting at third base in both 1997 and 1998.

When he moved to second base in 1999, Alfonzo continued to shine defensively. Though he finished in second in 1999’s Gold Glove voting to Cincinnati Reds’ second baseman Pokey Reese, Alfonzo was undoubtedly a huge part of that season’s incredible defensive infield.

Alfonzo’s hitting prowess also steadily improved throughout his Mets career. He hit over .300 four times in his seven years in Queens, finishing in the top 15 in MVP voting three of those years. Alfonzo also finished in the NL’s top 10 in hits, doubles, walks, OBP, and singles across 1999 and 2000.

His Mets teammates always spoke highly of him and thought of him as a model example of a major league ballplayer. Teammate Matt Franco had this to say about Alfonzo in June 2000: “He’s just a model of consistency. He is a great teammate. He is on an even keel. He plays immaculate defense. He is a tremendous, tremendous hitter. He’s just the best player we have.”

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