The 2017 New York Mets did something only three other teams ever did in franchise history. They managed to lead the league in home runs. In fact, they set a new franchise record that would fall in 2019 but even bested what the club did in 2016. Their 224 dingers tied the Milwaukee Brewers for the most in the National League.
Who remembers the Mets clobbering baseballs so well in 2017? If you don’t, it’s okay. The 2017 season was mostly forgotten because it was all about selling at the trade deadline and trying to get through plenty of shaky starting pitching performances.
The 2017 Mets could have hit a lot more home runs
The team’s leader in home runs was Jay Bruce. As you may recall, he was traded mid-year to the Cleveland Indians. He had already knocked 29 of them in only 448 plate appearances.
Michael Conforto was also well on his way to challenging for the franchise record. In 440 trips to the plate, he hit 27 home runs. Unfortunately, a season-ending injury cut that chase short.
No other Mets player would reach 20 but 8 others did get to double-digits. Even Jose Reyes, a player past his prime and never known for home runs got to 15. It was a home run-happy team one reliable starting rotation away from being a good team.
For a little bit of irony, the 70-92 Mets team from 2017 did the exact opposite of another team with the same exact record. In 2009, the team finished with exactly the same record. It essentially became the beginning of a transition from winning to losing.
The 2009 Mets are the only team in franchise history to finish 16th in the league in home runs. Other clubs did finish last but doing so was less humiliating because there were fewer teams thus a greater chance of finishing last. This was the first year of Citi Field when the team experienced a power outage they had never seen before.