This New York Mets trade for a shortstop isn’t quite as debated as it probably could be. Back in 2000, the Mets lost Rey Ordonez to a season-ending injury. They made their way through the start of the summer with some backups at the position before deciding it was time to acquire a veteran who could play the position better and hit.
The Mets called up the Baltimore Orioles and added veteran shortstop Mike Bordick. The price was steep. For a single player, the Mets gave up four younger ones.
For a couple of reasons, this is probably the worst trade the Mets have ever made for a shortstop. While Jim Fregosi was technically a shortstop before coming over, he joined the Mets to play third base. By default, it’s the July 28, 2000, trade for Bordick that goes down as the worst at this position.
Why the worst NY Mets trade for a shortstop is the Mike Bordick deal
Pat Gorman, Leslie Brea, Mike Kinkade, and Melvin Mora were the four players Baltimore acquired for the soon-to-be free agent Bordick. He’d go from slashing .297/.350/.481 with 16 home runs in Baltimore to a much weaker .260/.321/.365 with 4 home run effort with the Mets. His Mets numbers were eerily close to the .260/.323/.362 he slashed in parts of 14 MLB seasons. What he was doing in 2000, setting multiple career-highs, was an outlier.
The poor performance dragged into the postseason. Bordick hit .167 in the NLDS, .077 in the NLCS, and .125 in the World Series. He was able to provide the Mets with the same level of offense Ordonez may have if he stayed healthy. What makes this trade hurt most is the loss of Mora.
Mora was a utility man for New York who played 44 games at shortstop for them in 2000. He’d continue to play multiple positions with the Orioles, eventually settling in mostly as a third baseman.
Mora was hitting .260/.317/.423 for the Mets at the time of the deal. It’s practically what Bordick gave them. He got much better in Baltimore, finishing the season slashing .291/.359/.397 in his first 222 plate appearances with them.
It took a while but in 2002 Mora began to blossom into more of a power hitter. In 2003, he was an All-Star for Baltimore. One year later he batted .340/.419/.564 with 27 home runs and 104 RBI. The OBP led the league. It helped earn him a Silver Slugger.
Mora’s best years did come well after the Mets already had David Wright at the hot corner. It doesn’t save this trade that aged badly on both sides of what the team acquired and gave up. New York added an underperformer. They gave up a really good one in the deal, too.