4) NY Mets closer Jeurys Familia had multiple playoff blowups
Jeurys Familia was a key for the Mets making it into the postseason in 2015 and again in 2016. Without him, it’s easy to see a way where they don’t have a trip into the playoffs. With someone else on the roster, maybe they have a championship.
Famillia’s disappointing tenure label began with the 2015 World Series and the Game 1 home run he allowed to Alex Gordon with one out in the ninth. He’d find his way onto the mound three more times in the series. He’d get charged with only one more unearned run in the series, but allowing inherited runners to score was a problem in large part due to defensive miscues. Lucas Duda in Game 5 might be the biggest.
A year later, Familia found himself back on the mound in a 0-0 tie against the San Francisco Giants. A three-run home run off the bat of Conor Gillaspie pushed the Giants ahead late and for good. The Mets hitters were mostly silent against Madison Bumgarner on this particular night. It was nothing unusual for one of the game’s great postseason pitchers.
Familia’s tenure in New York was never nearly as good again. He suffered through injuries and poor performance, especially when he returned as a free agent after the 2018 season and a short stint with the Oakland Athletics.
A regular season hero for the Mets, Famillia’s connection to such disappointing playoff losses continues to linger.