#ThrowbackThursday Mets Edition: Rico Brogna

Brogna, a true left handed first baseman was drafted by the Detroit Tigers in the first round (26th overall) of the 1988 June Amateur Draft out of Watertown High School in Watertown, Connecticut. He made his Major League debut with the Tigers on August 8th, 1992 as he went 1-4 against the Toronto Blue Jays, at the age of 22 years old. He played 9 games and hit .192/ .276/ .346/ .622 with 1 double, 1 home run and 3 RBI’s in 26 at-bats that season.

On March 31st, 1994, the Mets traded for Brogna by giving up Alan Zinter. In his first season with the Mets, the smooth first baseman hit .351/ .380/ .626/ 1.006 with 11 doubles, 2 triples, 7 home runs, 20 RBI’s and a 158 OPS+ in 39 games.

After returning from the infamous strike in ’94, he played in 134 games and hit .289/ .342/ .485/ .827 with a 119 OPS+. The Turner Falls, Massachusetts native hit 27 doubles, 2 triples, 22 home runs with 76 runs driven in and 72 runs scored.

He had seasoned shortened by a shoulder injury that required surgery in 1996 and only appeared in 55 games. He had a slash line of .255/ .318/ .431/ .748 with 10 doubles, 1 triple, 7 home runs, 18 runs scored and 30 RBI’s before his last game in July.

On November 27th, 1996, the team traded Brogna away to the Philadelphia Phillies for relievers Toby Boreland and Ricardo Jordan. After learning of the trade, Brogna said this “I’ve come to learn that anything can happen in baseball, but I didn’t figure I would be traded,” he said. ”I came here when the Mets were rebuilding and I thought I’d be a mainstay with them. It’s a sad time, but I guess it’s part of the game.”

Overall with the Mets, Brogna hit .291/ .342/ .495/ .837 with an OPS+ of 121 in 228 games. He has 48 doubles, 5 triples, 36 home runs, 106 runs scored, and 126 RBI’s in 814 at-bats.

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