Daniel Murphy retiring from baseball as more than a postseason hero for the Mets

Daniel Murphy gave Mets fans something to watch during some lean years.
League Championship Series - New York Mets v Chicago Cubs - Game Four
League Championship Series - New York Mets v Chicago Cubs - Game Four / David Banks/GettyImages

New York Mets postseason hero Daniel Murphy is the most common way you might find the now ex-baseball player described. His tear during the 2015 playoffs made him beloved forever by the fans, but he was much more than a sudden October power surge.

Murphy made the news yesterday because it was announced he has retired. He last played in MLB back in 2020 with the Colorado Rockies. In 2023, he played for the Long Island Ducks and won himself a minor league contract with the Los Angeles Angels. The .288/.369/.353 he slashed in 176 minor league plate appearances has a selection of Mets fans wondering why it wasn’t the club he spent 7 seasons with to pull him away from the Independent League.

After all, Murphy did more than lift the Mets to the World Series. He was a good Mets player for a number of seasons.

Daniel Murphy was a reason to cheer on the NY Mets during some lean years

Before we had Jeff McNeil, it was Murphy who won over fans who appreciate players who put the bat on the ball. Murphy did have a couple of years where he struck out at a more human-like pace. In 2015, he unlocked a whole new mode he’d carry with him into free agency and to the Washington Nationals. We don’t need to talk about what he did there. Let’s stay happy.

Murphy only hit .300 or better twice for the Mets, doing so in his rookie 151 plate appearance season of 2008 and again in 2011 when he had his second shortest season in New York with 109 games played. The .320 batting average was still welcomed. After missing all of 2010 due to a knee injury, Murphy returned with vengeance for a Mets team in search of hope. The 2009 campaign which introduced us to Citi Field wasn’t the greatest. Murphy leading the team with only 12 home runs remains one of those funky statistics we’ll never forget. He wasn’t a better hitter. His best trait on the field was stockpiling hits.

Murphy had 188 hits in 2013 while playing in 161 games. The hit total ranks 11th in Mets history and could remain unchallenged from dropping a pot due to the changes to the way this game is played. Players look for walks more. They just don’t get to 161 games in a season either.

His Mets career finished with 967 hits and a .288/.331/.424 slash line. While it’s the 7 home runs in his first 9 postseason games we remember most fondly, Murphy was already one of the reasons to watch the ball club.

Fans will want to keep an eye out to see if Murphy ends up signing a one-day contract with the Mets to retire with the ball club. It was the past regime that moved on from him after all. And with the way Steve Cohen has been honoring the past of all generations, even a small tribute seems likely.