“I’m Very Honored And Very Humbled ” | Doc Gooden’s Iconic #16 To Be Retired By The Mets Along With Teammate Darryl Strawberry’s #18

In a move that seems overdue, the New York Mets announced they will be retiring the numbers of Dwight “Doc” Gooden and Darryl Strawberry next season. Their iconic Nos. 16 and 18 respectively are forever enshrined in team lore. Gooden and Strawberry both were members of the legendary 1986 World Series championship team.

Gooden Was On Track To Be An All-Time Great

Gooden only ranks behind Tom Seaver in wins and strikeouts, and only behind Seaver and Jerry Koosman in starts, innings and complete games in team history. He finished in the top seven of Cy Young voting five times as a Met.

After winning Rookie of the Year in 1984, his 1985 season was electric, and is still on the shortlist for the greatest seasons ever by a starting pitcher. He won the Cy Young Award, had a record of 24-4, 16 complete games, eight shutouts, 1.53 ERA, .965 WHIP, and struck out 268 hitters. Gooden won the triple crown of pitching.

He never again reached those heights, and his career was derailed by arm trouble and serious substance abuse addictions.

“I never really got choked up or at a loss of words any time through my ups or downs,” Gooden told “The Michael Kay Show.” “But this specific time, I got a little choked up and got a little teary eyed, because here’s a moment where you’re like, ‘Wow, that’s the highest honor you can get from a ball club.’ That means they appreciate everything you did on the field, and you’re being rewarded for that.”

He continued, “It’s a celebration that I get to have with the fans, my teammates that I played with, my family and all my loved ones. And it’s just a great, great honor. And so I look back at all the things I was able to accomplish in my career, all the people that paved the way for me to get to that point, all the people that supported me through my down times, and it was kind of emotional. But it was a great thing, and I’m very honored and very humbled for this opportunity that is finally here.”

Strawberry And Gooden Bitten By The Same Vice

Strawberry is the team’s all-time leader in home runs and OPS+. He’s second in RBIs and slugging percentage and third in extra-base hits. He won Rookie of the Year in 1983, and was a seven-time All-Star as a Met.

Strawberry finished second and third in MVP voting in 1988 and 1990, respectively. He hit 39 home runs in 1987 and 1988, as well as 37 in 1990.

Like Gooden, he dealt with drug and alcohol issues throughout his career.

“When I got the call from Steve, I welled up with tears of joy,” Strawberry said in a statement released by the Mets. “I started to reflect on my journey through the organization. I had some ups and downs, but in the end, I am proud of my time in New York.”

Both Gooden and Strawberry’s best were among the best of all-time. These are well-deserved honors for the men.

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