Nolan Ryan (‘66) and Tom Seaver (‘67) made their big league debuts one season apart.
The potential of the two reminds today’s fans of Matt Harvey and Zack Wheeler.
I say potential because Ryan had trouble finding the plate, walking 9.0 batters per nine innings. He spent six seasons with the Mets organization, five with the big club, before harnessing his heater. For the California Angels.
Seaver was magnificent right away. At 22, he was the rookie of the year and made his first all star team. By his third season, Seaver won the first of three Cy Young awards.
Ryan pitched in four different decades in a 27-year career that saw him strike out an unparalleled 5, 714 batters. An eight-time all star, he never won the Cy Young award.
Both have since been inducted to the Hall of Fame.
Close to 20 years after the Ryan and Severe’s debuts, the Mets rolled out 19-year-old phenom Dwight Gooden. While not in the hall of fame, approaching nowhere near Ryan and Severe’s longevity and consistency, Doc submitted arguably the greatest rookie season of all time.
Unfortunately for the Mets (though not that unfortunate, obviously), Doc 2.0 is pitching for the Miami Marlins. You don’t need me to tell you who I’m referring to.