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Sick, slumping Cespedes fuels Mets to best start ever

The Mets are off to their best start in franchise history, but where does it rank among the league's best ever?
Yoenis Cespdes. (Photo: Getty Images)

New York Mets slugger Yoenis Cespedes has been mired in quite a slump, going 2-for-21 with 11 strikeouts.

The flu-like symptoms that have been plaguing him over the past few days might have something to do with it, but when it matters most, the left fielder is still finding ways to come through. 

His lone two hits have proven to be game-winners, the latest coming on Tuesday night against the Miami Marlins, a two-RBI double in the top of the ninth lifting the Mets to an 8-6 victory. It was the team's seventh-straight win, improving their record to 9-1. Entering Wednesday night, New York is tied with the Boston Red Sox for the league's best record as Zack Wheeler makes his season debut against the Marlins. 

No other Mets team has started a season winning nine of its first 10 games. The 1985 and 2006 Mets started their campaigns 8-1 before dropping their ninth decision.

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But where does the Mets' greatest start rank among the best starts in MLB history? Continue below to find out:

Best starts in MLB history

1982 Atlanta Braves

Record: 13-0

There was a familiar face for New Yorkers managing the Atlanta Braves in 1982 as Joe Torre helped his club become the first to ever win 13-straight games to start a season. Ten of those games came against the Houston Astros and Cincinnati Reds, two teams that combined to be almost 50 games under .500 that year. Cincinnati had the National League's worst record at 61-101. 

Atlanta was led by center fielder Dale Murphy, who went on to win his first of two-straight National League MVP awards as he batted .281 with 36 home runs and 109 RBI. 

The Braves would go on to win the NL West with an 89-73 record before losing in the NLCS to the eventual world champion St. Louis Cardinals.

 

1987 Milwaukee Brewers

Record: 13-0

The postseason looked all but secure for a Brewers team that flew out of the gates to start the 1987 season. With two Hall of Famers in Robin Yount and Paul Molitor featured in their lineup, Milwaukee made its intentions clear early on as they swept the defending American League champion Boston Red Sox to start the year. 

After their streak ended against the Chicago White Sox, the Brewers didn't stop with their scolding hot play as they accrued a 20-3 record through their first 23 games. 

Don't ever say games in April and May don't count, though. Following that start, the Brewers lost 12-straight games and 18 of 20 on their way to a respectable 91-71 record. But they did not make the playoffs. 

 

1981 Oakland Athletics

Record: 11-0

A season after finishing 14 games behind the Kansas City Royals in the AL West, the A's shot out of the gates, outscoring their opponents 63-14 during their 11-game winning streak. 

While the year was shortened to 109 games due to a player's strike that eliminated the month of July, Rickey Henderson proved that his stellar sophomore season the year before was no fluke. The 22-year-old led the American League with 135 hits, 89 runs and 56 stolen bases as he finished second in MVP voting that year to Milwaukee's Rollie Fingers. 

Oakland would finish the year 64-45, sweeping the Royals in the ALDS before falling to the Yankees in the championship series.

 

1955 Brooklyn Dodgers

Record: 10-0

The Dodgers had been the dominant force in the National League starting in the late 1940s. However, they were unable to win a World Series despite winning the pennant in 1947, 1949, 1952 and 1953 as the Yankees stood in their way each time. 

Tabbed as one of the league favorites again in 1955, the Dodgers didn't disappoint, jumping out to a 10-0 start including a pair of wins over the defending world champion New York Giants. 

Brooklyn's squad was one of the most memorable in MLB history, featuring four Hall of Famers in Jackie Robinson, Duke Snider, Roy Campanella and Pee Wee Reese. Campanella and Snider would finish 1-2 in the MVP voting while the Dodgers finally got past the Yankees for their only World Series title in Brooklyn. Two years later, they moved to Los Angeles, making way for the Mets in 1962.

Also finishing 10-0: 1962 Pittsburgh Pirates, 1966 Cleveland Indians