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New York Mets: 15 best trades the franchise has ever made

PITTSBURGH, PA - 1986: New York Mets, from left, Ron Darling, Ed Lynch #36, Keith Hernandez #17 and Bob Ojeda #19, look on from the dugout during a Major League Baseball game against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Three Rivers Stadium in 1986 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by George Gojkovich/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA - 1986: New York Mets, from left, Ron Darling, Ed Lynch #36, Keith Hernandez #17 and Bob Ojeda #19, look on from the dugout during a Major League Baseball game against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Three Rivers Stadium in 1986 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by George Gojkovich/Getty Images)
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FLUSHING, NY – OCTOBER 15, 1969: General view of the outfield and scoreboard prior to Game 4 of the World Series on October 15, 1969 between the Baltimore Orioles and the New York Mets at Shea Stadium in New York, New York. (Photo by: Kidwiler Collection/Diamond Images/Getty Images)

#4 Donn Clendenon

Coming in as the fourth-best trade in franchise history we have another key piece to the 1969 World Series Championship team in first baseman Donn Clendenon. On June 15th, 1969, the Mets acquired Clendenon from the Montreal Expos in exchange for minor league pitchers Steve Renko, Jay Carden, and David Colon, minor league infielder Terry Dailey, and infielder Kevin Collins.

Carden, Colon, and Dailey all never ended up playing a game for the Expos. Collins only lasted half a season before he was purchased by the Detroit Tigers. In his half-season with the Expos, he hit .240/.292/.375/.667 with 2 home runs and 12 RBI in 52 games played.

The only player that had a real impact on the Expos in their return was Renko. He pitched in part of eight seasons and combined for a 3.90 ERA and a 1.387 WHIP over 1,359.1 innings pitched.

As for the Mets return, they got a man who was essentially the final piece to the team to put them over the top. Clendenon only played in two and a half seasons with the Mets but was one of the most important pieces in those few years. In his two and half seasons he hit .267/.328/.469/.797 with 45 home runs, 171 RBI, 125 runs scored, and had a thirteenth place finish in MVP voting over 281 games played.

In the half-season Clendenon spent with the Mets in 1969, he hit .252/.321/.455/.777 with 12 home runs and 37 RBI in 72 games as he split games at first base with Ed Kranepool.

His best season came the year after being acquired. In 1970 Clendenon went on to hit .288/.348/.515/863 with 22 home runs, 97 RBI, and 65 runs scored in 121 games played with a 3.0 WAR and a thirteenth place finish in MVP voting.

Clendenon really made a name for himself for Mets fans and Mets history when they made it to the World Series in 1969. In the World Series, he hit .357/.438/1.071/1.509 with 3 home runs, 4 RBI, and 4 runs scored in four games played while being awarded World Series MVP.

Although Clendenon’s time with the Mets was a lot shorter than others, he made the most of his time. He was a key piece in bringing home the first World Series Championship in franchise history both down the stretch in the regular season and winning World Series MVP. The Mets only gave up one player who would go onto have any decent success in the Majors for Clendenon who helped propel them to their first World Series, resulting in the acquisition of Clendenon being the fourth-best trade in Mets franchise history.

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