Saturday, July 14, 2012

Chipper Jones Welcomes Josh Edgin To The Mets

On Friday, Josh Edgin became the 934th player in Mets history to play for the team.  He also became the 442nd player to take the mound for the Mets when he came into the game in the fifth inning to clean up the mess Miguel Batista left for him.  Edgin struck out both batters he faced to escape the bases loaded, one-out jam.  However, he didn't become a true Met until the following inning.  What happened to earn him this dubious honor?

Chipper Jones took him deep.

If chicks dig the longball, chicks must really dig Chipper Jones when he bats against the Mets.

Josh Edgin started the sixth inning trying to keep the Mets within one run of the Braves.  But he didn't check the playlist on Chipper Jones' Farewell Tour before the Braves' third baseman walked up to the plate to face him.  You see, Chipper Jones always has a second set when he faces the Mets.  It's a set that includes taking a new pitcher deep every time he sees him.  And Josh Edgin found out about that set one pitch too late.

In allowing Jones' 49th career HR against the Mets, Josh Edgin became the 35th different Mets pitcher to watch his meatball leave the yard.  27 of those 35 pitchers gave up exactly one home run to Jones.  Those pitchers are:

  • Josias Manzanillo (1995)
  • Pete Harnisch (1995)
  • Pete Walker (1995)
  • Mark Clark (1996)
  • Jason Isringhausen (1997)
  • Masato Yoshii (1999)
  • Pat Mahomes (1999)
  • Dennis Cook (1999)
  • John Franco (2000)
  • Glendon Rusch (2001)
  • Satoru Komiyama (2002)
  • Pedro Astacio (2002)
  • Tom Glavine (2003)
  • Jae Weong Seo (2003)
  • Edwin Almonte (2003)
  • Pedro Martinez (2006)
  • Darren Oliver (2006)
  • John Maine (2007)
  • J.J. Putz (2009)
  • Pedro Feliciano (2009)
  • Pat Misch (2009)
  • Johan Santana (2010)
  • D.J. Carrasco (2011)
  • Jonathon Niese (2011)
  • R.A. Dickey (2011)
  • Chris Schwinden (2011)
  • Josh Edgin (2012)

Jones has also victimized eight different Mets pitchers on multiple occasions.  Those pitchers are listed below, along with the number of home runs they gave up to him and the years in which those home runs were hit:

  • Bobby Jones: 4 HR (1996, 1997 [twice], 1998) 
  • Steve Trachsel: 4 HR (2002, 2003, 2004, 2005)
  • Rick Reed: 3 HR (1999, 2001 [twice])
  • Mike Pelfrey: 3 HR (2007, 2008, 2010)
  • Orel Hershiser: 2 HR (1999 [twice])
  • Aaron Heilman: 2 HR (2003, 2005)
  • Dave Mlicki: 2 HR (1995, 1997)
  • Al Leiter: 2 HR (1999, 2000)

Here are some additional tidbits of home run information, courtesy of Chipper Jones' bat and the good folks at

Although Chipper Jones has five multi-HR games against the Mets, Bobby Jones is the only pitcher in Mets history to allow two home runs to Chipper in the same game, doing so on June 25, 1997.  Chipper's non-relative allowed a solo shot in the fourth inning followed by a grand slam in the fifth.  In each of Chipper Jones' other four multi-HR games against the Mets, he took multiple pitchers deep.

Since the Mets left Shea Stadium for Citi Field in 2009, Jones has hit ten home runs against them.  Those ten homers were hit off ten different pitchers, with Jones doing the 120-yard trot against (in order) J.J. Putz, Pedro Feliciano, Pat Misch, Johan Santana, Mike Pelfrey, D.J. Carrasco, Jonathon Niese, R.A. Dickey, Chris Schwinden and Josh Edgin.  (Here's a tip for Mets pitchers.  If you don't want to give up a home run to Chipper Jones, go by your given first name, not by your initials.  Got that, Putz, Carrasco and Dickey?)

The home run allowed by Edgin on Friday was the first given up by a Met to Jones in 2012.  If no other Met serves up a homer to the Braves' soon-to-be retiree (which is about as likely as Lucas Duda winning a Gold Glove this year), this would mark the fourth season in which Jones hit only one home run against the Mets.  In 1998, 2004 and 2008, Jones hit only one home run against the Mets, taking Bobby Jones deep in 1998, Steve Trachsel in 2004, and Mike Pelfrey in 2008.  Not by coincidence, those are the three Mets pitchers who allowed the most home runs to Jones during their time in Flushing.  (Pelfrey is tied with Rick Reed for third-most home runs allowed.)

Finally, Josh Edgin is not alone in allowing a home run to Chipper Jones during his major league debut.  Two other Mets pitchers received their "welcome to the majors" present from Chipper Jones in the form of a home run as well.

At Shea, at Citi, or at Turner Field, no Met pitcher is safe from Chipper Jones.

On July 7, 2003, Edwin Almonte made his major league debut for the Mets, pitching in relief of Jae Weong Seo, who had already given up a home run to Jones earlier in the game.  Almonte must not have been watching from the bullpen, as he allowed another home run to Jones in the eighth inning.  Almonte went on to pitch 11 more games in relief for the Mets in 2003, never recording a decision for the team, but finishing his abbreviated career with a whopping 11.12 ERA, the highest ERA for any Mets pitcher who appeared in at least 10 games.

Just last year, during the first game of a doubleheader on September 8, 2011, Chris Schwinden was rocked by a Chipper Jones home run in the third inning of his major league debut.  Like Almonte before him, Schwinden has not won a game in the major leagues, despite making six additional appearances (five starts) since his debut.  Fortunately, his 6.98 ERA as a Met is not the highest of any pitcher in Mets history who has made at least six starts.  That honor goes to Calvin Schiraldi, who was a Met before he lost Games 6 and 7 of the 1986 World Series to his former team.  Schiraldi had a 7.63 ERA as a Met in 15 appearances (seven starts) with the team in 1984 and 1985.  Fortunately for him, he was out of baseball by 1991, so he was not able to be taken deep by Chipper Jones.

Chipper Jones has not just welcomed Mets pitchers to the big leagues.  He has also given a goodbye present to one unfortunate soul.  On September 11, 2002, during the first game of a doubleheader, Jones hit a home run off Mets reliever Satoru Komiyama.  It was the last hit allowed by Komiyama in the major leagues, as he never pitched again after that game.  And just for the record, Komiyama finished his one-year career in the big leagues with an 0-3 record.  No wins.  Just like Almonte.  Just like Schwinden.  Just like Edgin (as of now).

Chipper Jones has always been one of the biggest thorns in the Mets' side.  Josh Edgin has now been pricked by that thorn.  Welcome to the big leagues, Josh.  You're a true Met now.

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