Jeff Wilpon announced that the Mets will be retiring LHP Jerry Koosman‘s number 36 in the 2020 season.
Debuting for the Mets in the 1967-1968 season Koosman was discovered by the son of a Shea Stadium usher who caught for him when he pitched in the United States Army. The Mets then offered the southpaw a contract after his discharge from military service. In his career, Koosman was 222-209 with a 3.36 ERA. Koosman was a member of the New York Mets for 12 years with a 140-137 record along with a 3.09 ERA. He threw 108 complete games and 26 shutouts for New York between 1967-1978.
Most notably Jerry Koosman was a tremendous part of the New York Mets franchise and was a member of the Miracle Mets team that won the 1969 World Series. In that ’69 season, the lefty was 17-9 with a 2.28 ERA and 180 strikeouts in an All-Star Season (his second).
With 222 career wins Koosman is tied with Tim Hudson at #76 on the All-Time Win List. Koosman ranks second in team history in starts (346), complete games (108), inning (2,544.2), and shutouts (26). He is third in team history in strikeouts (1,799) and sixth in ERA (3.09).
Manager Mickey Callaway wore 36 during his time so far as Mets manager, he announced that he is changing his number to 26.
Koosman is the first Mets player to receive this honor who didn’t make it to the Baseball Hall of Fame, he was inducted to the Mets Hall of Fame back in 1989. Jeff Wilpon remarked that the Mets “have a plan to catch-up” in regards to player retirement making it seem like the organization is planning to loosen their number retirement policy going forward.
Jerry Koosman (#36) joins Tom Seaver (#41) and Mike Piazza (#31) as the only Mets players to have their numbers retired. Managers Casey Stengal (#37) and Gil Hodges (#14) are also retired by the Mets along with Jackie Robinson (#42) throughout baseball.