What if the all-time New York Mets roster was decided by nothing other than a single statistic? All-defining one known as WAR is the place to start.
Using Baseball-Reference as the place for these numbers, we’ve created the all-time Mets roster relying only on this number they accumulated while with the team. Amazingly, WAR got it almost perfectly correct. Active players even made the ball club.
Let’s waste no time and begin with our starters in the field.
All-time NY Mets starting lineup based only on WAR
C – Mike Piazza (24.6)
1B – Keith Hernandez (26.6)
2B – Edgardo Alfonzo (29.6)
3B – David Wright (49.92)
SS – Jose Reyes (28.2)
LF – Mookie Wilson (20.8)
CF – Carlos Beltran (31.1)
RF – Darryl Strawberry (36.6)
DH – Howard Johnson (22.0)
P – Tom Seaver (76.1)
We’re going with a DH here simply to make it modern and because this lineup feels so much deadlier with Howard Johnson in his prime there. He’d make the roster anyway. These nine position players actually are the top 9 in WAR which spreads out nicely to give us a perfect starting lineup.
Exactly how would we order them? Let’s see:
Order them however you’d want. This is an all-time starting lineup and we have way too many good players to choose from. Jose Reyes at the top is the one obvious place we’re all in agreement with. It’s everything in the middle we can toy with. Don’t forget to separate the lefties and righties a little bit. We’ll be playing the all-time Phillies roster based on WAR which means an older yet still equally as effective Tug McGraw will be coming out of their bullpen, too.
I’m not sure there is another team out there where the top 9 players in WAR for position players could make such a perfectly defensive team. Because we are putting together a full roster, we now need to dive a little deeper and create our bench. We’ll do our best to not skip over anyone.