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Lucas Duda’s Most Memorable Mets Games and Moments


Lucas Duda NY mets

Lucas Duda aka The Dude, formerly of the New York Mets

Lucas Duda aka “The Dude” is no longer a member of the New York Mets. Let’s give him a proper send-off and take a look at his most memorable Mets games.

Lucas Duda played 760 games over seven and a half seasons in a New York Mets uni. When the Metros traded Duda for Tampa Bay Rays minor league relief pitcher Drew Smith last week, Lucas already achieved the third best season of his career. With the Mets, he was on pace for 28 home runs, which would be his second highest single season tally, along with 60 RBIs. His best season came in 2014, when Duda finished 22nd in the MVP vote after putting up 30 homers and 92 RBIs.

What stung most about the trade? Duda was getting center of the earth, volcanic magma hot. In the four days since the trade, Duda crushed three home runs with the Rays. He should expect even more ding-dongs playing in hitter-friendly parks like Yankee Stadium and Fenway Park. Also, Duda’s the DH with the Rays, which means his mind won’t carry any costly defensive errors to the plate; all his focus goes back on the bat.

When I first caught wind of the news, I thought maybe the Mets would try to bring him back in 2018, but reports but the kibosh on that noise. But, let’s be honest, Mets fans. Duda was as frustrating as they come. He’d go ice-cold for a 10-day stretch then rip seeds for two weeks. Plus, injuries severely curbed his playing time.

There are 26 weeks in a MLB regular season. Say a manager rests each player one game per week, that would mean a starter should see approximately 136 starts per season. Duda only topped that number once. Over his Mets career, Lucas only played in 61% of Mets games. Take away his “rookie year” (when he was called up in September 2010), and the number increases to 68%.

Make no mistake, of all the trades and transactions the Mets will make this lost season, Duda’s trade will sting the most. All the other players dealt or dangled on the market – Addison Reed, Asdrubal Cabrera, Neil Walker, Jay Bruce, Jerry Blevins, Rene Rivera, Curtis Granderson, and even Jose Reyes – Duda had the strongest connection to the fans because he’s homegrown.

Don't Go Lucas!!!!! Gonna miss you buddy!!!

A post shared by Lucas Duda (@wefollowlucasduda) on

Remember when that was a thing with the Mets? Our whole team is homegrown! 

During his tenure with the Mets (his 760 games played is 23rd all-time in franchise history), Duda has some impressive rankings within the franchise:

  • 46th in Batting Average (three points below Gary Carter)
  • Tied for 40th in Overall WAR with Ron Swoboda
  • Tied for 27th in Offensive WAR with Bobby Bonilla
  • 25th in Hits (one spot above Todd Hundley)
  • 23rd in On-Base Percentage (two points above Howard Johnson)
  • 21st in Runs Scored (two spots below Hundley)
  • 17th in Total Bases (just below Lee Mazzilli)
  • 16th in Doubles (again behind Mazzilli)
  • 16th in RBIs (sandwiched between Dave Kingman and George Foster)
  • 13th in Slugging Percentage (two points below HoJo)
  • 13th in On-Base Plus Slugging (tied with HoJo, just below Edgardo Alfonso)
  • Tied for 10th in OPS+ with Carlos Delgado
  • 7th in Home Runs (one spot below Carlos Beltran)
  • 16th in Runs Created (right behind Kevin McReynolds)
  • 7th in At-Bats per Home Run (between Robin Ventura and Cliff Floyd)

…and my favorite Duda stat…

The franchise leader in Hit by Pitch, three ahead of David Wright.

So, say what you will about Duda’s inconsistency, but The Dude is in pretty good company.

Hence, this post. RIP Mets’ Lucas Duda. In memoriam, we’re fondly getting misty-eyed about The Dude’s most memorable Mets moments and games.

Lucas Duda GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Mets at Phillies, September 25, 2010

Duda’s pinch-hit three-run double in the 7th inning powered the Mets to a 5-2 win.

Padres at Mets, August 8, 2011

Lucas hit the game-winning two-run single in the bottom of the ninth off closer Heath Bell for a dramatic 9-8 victory.

Mets at Reds, July 28, 2011

Duda’s three-run double in the top of the 4th put the Mets ahead, 4-2 en route to a 10-9 win.

Lucas Duda GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Mets at Rangers, June 25, 2011

Duda showed the other league how lethal he could be, going 4-for-5 with 4 RBIs.

Mets at Braves, September 28, 2012

All three Mets runs came on a Duda homer in the 7th for the 3-1 win.

Mets at Rockies, April 28, 2012

The Dude smacked a two-rung single and a two-run homer in a 7-5 win.

Marlins at Mets, September 13, 2013

Los Mets got the 4-3 win thanks to Duda’s three-run HR in the bottom of the 6th.

Reds at Mets, April 4, 2014

The Dude knocked a two-run homer in the 4th to get the lead and the clinching two-run homer in the 6th for a 4-3 win.

Mets at Phillies, June 1, 2014

In the top of the 11th, Lucas cracked the go-ahead (eventual game-winning) home run.

Astros at Mets, September 27, 2014

In the bottom of the night, Duda laced the game-winning two-run yard-job.

Mets at Dodgers, August 24, 2014

Lucas knocked two home runs and collected a single-game high 5 RBIs in a 11-3 win.

Mets at Brewers, July 25, 2014

The Dude went yard off K-Rod in the top of the 9th with a two-run homer to win the game 3-2.

Nationals at Mets, August 1, 2015

Solo shot in the 4th, game-tying homer in the 7th, game-winning double in the bottom of the 8th. I was at this game and it truly was a sight to behold. Duda obliterated baseballs that night.

NLCS Game 4, Mets at Cubs, October 21, 2015

Lucas brought the ruckus on the doorstep of the World Series. Big Man went 3-for-5 with 5 RBIs, including a three-run homer to open the scoring in the 1st and a two-run double in the 2nd to give the Mets a 6-0 lead that they’d never relinquish.

Mets at Phillies, April 18, 2016

In a season decimated by injuries, this one of the sole bright spots. Duda’s double in the 6th gives the Mets the 2-1 lead, then his solo shot in the 8th extends the gap. Then his back went on vacation.

***

I’m a salty guy who has a tough time forgetting failures and moving on. So, I’d be puttin’ up a front if I didn’t note World Series Game 5 in which Duda threw the ball away, allowing Eric Hosmer to score the tying run in the top of the 9th. The Royals would go on to win in extra innings.

The Dude abided more times than he didn’t. I wish him and his Instagram account the best. May you finally quench your insatiable thirst for rain…

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