Now that David Wright has moved from the field to the front office, we can assemble an all-time team of players who played their entire MLB careers with the Mets. Each player must have played at least one game at the position to which he is assigned.
1B… Ed Kranepool was an easy choice here. The Bronx native was signed to an $85,000 bonus, (pretty big money in those days), as a 17 year old in 1962, and he actually appeared in some MLB games at the end of that season. His career totaled 18 years, from 1962-1979, 1853 games in all for him. His best stretch was probably 1974-1977. In 1975, in 106 games, he assembled a slash line of .323/.370/.409, making it perhaps his best year.
2B… Ted Schreiber, in contrast to Kranepool, had a short MLB career of 39 games as a utility infielder, all in 1963. The Brooklyn native had been signed by the Red Sox and then claimed by the Mets in 1962 in the Rule five draft. He had a decent glove but was overmatched at the plate at the MLB level with a .160 BA in his only season.
SS… Ron Gardenhire played for the Mets from 1981-1985. He was a pretty slick fielder who did struggle at the plate. In 1982 he played in 141 games and slashed .240/.279/.313. Of course he is much better known as manager than as a player. He skippered the Twins for 13 years, and won the Manager of the Year award in 2010. Since 2018 he has managed Detroit.
3B… Wright was certainly one of the best, if not the best, position players ever for the Mets. Wright played in the majors from 2004-2018, although due to injuries he made only a token appearance in his last three seasons. Wright was a rare five tool player as displayed by his 2007 year. In 160 games he slashed .325/.416/.546 with 34 stolen bases and a Gold Glove, one of two he won. Wright made the All-Star team seven times in his career. Wright had many highlight reel plays in his career, including the two run homer in game three of the 2015 WS at Citi Field, leading the team to its only win in the Series. Wright might well be a contender for the Hall of Fame had not his career and production been shortened by spinal stenosis.
OF… Rod Kanehl was an original Met, and he played in the big leagues from 1962-1964. Kanehl had originally signed with the Yankees, and Casey Stengel became impressed by his hustle in ST games. Kanehl was an excellent athlete, he had been a good decathalonner in his college days. He was also extremely versatile, he played every position except pitcher and catcher in the majors. Alas, versatility, speed and hustle can get you only so far in the majors. Kanehl played a pivotal role in the team’s first ever home victory at the Polo Grounds in April of 1962. Kanehl scored the winning run on a wild pitch. The noteworthy aspect of that was that he scored all the way from second base, a testament to his speed.
OF… Bruce Boisclair played five years for the Mets, from 1974-1979. His best season was 1977, with a slash line of .293/.359/.407 in 127 games. His production then tailed off in the following two years, and he played the 1980 season in Japan for the Hanshin Tigers before retiring from the sport.
OF… Dave Schneck played 143 games for the Mets from 1972-1974. He did homer in his very first game, but overall he only posted a lifetime .199 BA. However, there are some good reasons. He was originally a pitcher but an arm injury in college forced him to switch positions. He was only a 38th round draft selection, so just making it to the big leagues was an achievement. The fact that being drafted into the Army and spending a tour in Vietnam during the ‘69 and ‘70 seasons undoubtedly hindered his development.
C…. Ron Hodges spent 12 years with the Mets, from 1973-1984, mostly as the backup catcher. An exception was 1983 when he was the starter, playing 110 games that year, posting a .260/.383/.308 slash line. He was decent defensively, and he had a good eye at the plate, with a lifetime OBP of .342, and BA of .240. He did appear in the ‘73 WS against Oakland with one PA. True to form, he drew a walk in his one at bat.
P…. Bob Apodaca spent five years with the Mets, from 1973-1977, mostly as a reliever with some starts thrown in. His lifetime ERA was a sparkling 2.86. In 1975 He posted a 1.49 ERA with 13 saves and a WHIP of 1.11. His career was cut short by a torn ligament in his elbow in ST of 1978. Tommy John surgery was in its infancy at the point. Apodaca then became a pitching coach, mainly in the minors but also serving as the pitching coach for the Mets from 1996-1999. He also served stretches as pitching coach for the Brewers and the Rockies.
One player was great, several were good, the rest lesser, but the common bond was that their MLB playing days were all spent exclusively with the Mets.