Mets' last waltz

Posted: March 29, 2013

The Mets never got to do a victory dance during their last waltz. The core group of Gary Carter, Keith Hernandez, Wally Backman, Lenny Dykstra, Darryl Strawberry, Ron Darling, and Dwight Gooden beat the Red Sox, four games to three, to win the 1986 World Series. But they finished second in the NL East in 1987 after 1986 World Series MVP Ray Knight left the team. Then they lost to the Dodgers in the 1988 NLCS. After that, the team was overhauled, and the last waltz was over.

What the core players did: Backman, Dykstra, Carter, and Knight combined for 31 hits as the Mets won three of the last four World Series games to clinch the title. Darling was the workhorse on the mound, starting three games. Here is how they fared that season:

Backman: .320 regular season; .333 World Series.

Dyksta: .295, 31 stolen bases regular season; .296 World Series.  

Carter: .255, 105 RBIs regular season; .276, 9 RBIs World Series.

Darling: 15-6, 2.81 ERA regular season; 1-1, 1.53 ERA World Series.

Conclusion: The Phillies do not want to wind up like the Mets and peter out after just one World Series title.

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