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Howard Johnson
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Howard Johnson
Howard Johnson
Ultimate Mets Database popularity ranking: 13 of 1043 players
Howard Michael Johnson
Born: November 29, 1960 at Clearwater, Fla.
Throws: Right Bats: Both
Height: 5.10 Weight: 175

Howard Johnson has been the most popular Ultimate Mets Database daily lookup 44 times, most recently on July 4, 2017.

3b ss of
Non-playing roles with Mets
  • First Base Coach 2007
  • Hitting Instructor 2007 - 2010

First Mets game: April 9, 1985
Last Mets game: July 22, 1993

Winner of National League Player of the Month award, June 1989, September 1991. (New York Mets)
Winner of National League Player of the Week award, June 25, 1989. (New York Mets)
Named Third Baseman on the National League Silver Slugger team, 1989, 1991. (New York Mets)

Share your memories of Howard Johnson


Adam Brown
HoJo may not be the best Met ever. I'll admit that, but he is my all-time favorite Met. He has his records. He was an awesome hitter and an awesome fielder. But he was also a really cool guy on and off field. He always gave autographs. He was a family man and he never did anything wrong. In fact if you remember in '86 he was hitting so well they thought his bat was corked and it wasn't. HoJo is the greatest.

Mike Welch
HoJo was an excellent third baseman with so many tools: speed, power and an excellent throwing arm from third. I remember the 1989 season when he virtually carried the Mets on his back during Darryl Strawberry's struggles that year. I also remember it was a bit of an adventure when a ground ball was hit his way!

HoJo should have been batting from the left side of the plate exclusively. It was like night and day, especially for the last couple of years with the Mets. If he was batting lefty I was excited about what might happen. If he was batting righty, I waited for the K, pop out or weak ground ball.

Andy from Rego Park
Man, could he turn on a fastball! We know, like Whitey Herzog knows, Hojo didn't cork his bat. So how did a guy who is 5'10" and 175 lbs, slam so many homers in 87, 89, and 91. And then, after leading the NL in homers and rbis in '91, lose it completely? I'm thinking a pact with the devil...

Watching HoJo pummel Todd Worrell time and again was pure joy. Whitey Herzog turned 1,000 shades of red every time HoJo went deep against Worrell. I admit I wanted to run HoJo out of town after the dismal 1988 season he had. If my memory serves me, he made the last out of the '88 NLCS. But he proved me wrong....real wrong. I'll always respect him for coming back after such a lousy year to put up some huge numbers for that time.

Coach HoJo
December 19, 2000
HoJo is 1 of the greatest Mets of all time!!! the stats prove it and soon he will be helping young up and comers get some Met Magic when he starts Coaching the Brooklyn Cyclones

Mr. Sparkle
January 3, 2001
I agree, Hojo was an awesome player but I couldn't help but wonder why his best years were only after the Mets made the playoffs in 86 and 88. He wasn't a real impact on those teams, only 87, 89, and 91 whe the Mets went nowhere. Still, he's awesome. I'll never forget the look on his face when Tony Pena grabbed his bat in St. Louis because Herzog wanted to check it for corks. I still think Hojo should have popped Pena right in the face when he did that. That really pissed me off! Unfortunately Hojo dropped off the table after the 91 seasonh and was never even close to the player he was in that season or before. He couldn't even catch on in Chicago. It was too bad to see him lose it all so quickly. He did give us some great memories and had some clutch homers.

Won Doney
January 4, 2001
He was a great player. It's strange how he didn't really start hitting home runs or stealing bases until '87, however.

January 24, 2001
Now HoJo's the batting coach for the Brooklyn Cyclones! KEWL!

Coach HoJo
February 21, 2001
I had to get this monkey off my back big time!!!!

HOW THE HELL could Howard Johnson get little or no votes for entree into the Hall of Fame? Sure some would say HoJo doesn't belong in the Hall. But what gets me pissed off about the whole HoJo situation is that Don Mattingly who has almost the same exact stats as HoJo got many more votes and will appear in future ballots. To me this is a crime. The only reason why Don got any votes is because he played for the Yankees. Time has been very friendly to Mattingly. People like to remember what he did good but they also forget the big time slumps he got into. But people will excuse the slumps saying "He has a bad back but if he didn't have a bad back he would have been a million times better." Well, last time I checked the Hall of Fame isnt a place for "What ifs." Its a place for people who have made an impact for their team or the game its self while putting up great numbers. Mattingly Had good numbers sometimes but his continuous slumps and the fact that he had little or no impact in helping the Yanks out of their losing woes doesn't help either. Howard on the other hand was a hitting machine and was a key part of the Mets success in the late 80's. HoJo's only problem was that he stayed in baseball to long.

March 16, 2001
AMEN, Coach Ho Jo!! I couln't agree more. Granted I don't think that HoJo necessarily deserves entrance into the Hall, but based on numbers, neither do Rabbit Maranville, Rick Ferrell, Eppa Rixey or Nellie Fox, among others. And if Mattingly gets even one vote, it will be an injustice. HoJo was a star in Flushing, but could you imagine what he would've been in the Bronx? Outside of the city, he was an underappreciated, not very well known gamer. Sure, anyone can be made a megastar if they worked for an egocentric idiot like Steinbrenner. Now if Mattingly played for the Mets, I can guarantee that he wouldn't be treated like a martyr the way the Yankees are making him out to be. For my money, I'll take HoJo any day of the week and twice on Sunday.

March 17, 2001
Never saw the fastball he couldn't turn on. The cat and mouse game between he and Whitey Herzog was priceless.

Probably the best 3B in team history, depending upon how Ventura does in the next 2 years.

June 8, 2001
Bob Murphy on HoJo: "Trying to sneak a fastball past HoJo is like trying to sneak sunshine past a rooster."

Joe Figliola
July 20, 2001
I score Mets baseball games and have a record of every game/season since 1971. In 1992, when I began compiling my top 10 all-time Met scoring records lists, I noticed that not one Met had reached the 100-hit mark in lifetime hits. This partially was my fault; some seasons I scored a ton games, others were of the one- to six- game variety.

I went through the numbers of all the active Mets entering the '92 season and found that Hojo had the best shot with 77 scored hits. Despite a season-ending injury, Hojo racked up 14 hits to put him within striking range of the mark.

In 1993, after an 0-15 start, Hojo made his move with 6 hits in 15 at-bats before getting knocked out for the year with another injury. Hojo finished his Met scoring career with 97 hits.

It would not be until 1996 that a Met cracked the 100- hit for me (Jeff Kent). But I sometimes still wish that a nice guy like Hojo would've been the first.

July 27, 2001
Tim McCarver doing the game on TV, 1986 Mets in St. Louis, trailing by one. Todd Worrell pitching. "The Mets need a long ball.......and they just might have it." Howard Johnson's HR ties the game in the ninth. Mets go on to win.. Howard Johnson pumps his fists before entering the dugout. #20 Johnson lives on in Mark.

July 29, 2001
First of all, is it me or is it ridiculous to even suggest Hojo as a Hall of Famer? He had a few solid years, but I remember always feeling like he wouldn't last long, like he was some star imposter. Nice guy agreed.

August 7, 2001
In Fort Lauderdale in 1993, I was watching a Cardinals-Pirates spring training game and shooting the breeze with my fellow fans in the right field bleachers. Several innings had passed before I realized one of the guys I was speaking with was Hojo's father. He told me it was doubtful his son had much left then -- he had a bad shoulder or back that had hampered his 92 season and it hadn't improved much. He was kind of sad about that.

You could make an argument that Hojo was the best all-around offensive player in Mets history.

August 9, 2001
Always liked HoJo, except that he was a lousy post-season performer. Wore the Met uniform with as much pride as anyone. Favorite memory: that late September '85 game against the Cardinals at Shea. Danny Cox deliberately hit George Foster in the rear because he stepped out of the box (and loaded the bases) and HoJo hit the next pitch off the scoreboard. If Shea had a roof, it would have blown off right there.

Dan Drobnis
August 19, 2001
Who could forget that magical season of 1991? I was there at Shea Stadium almost every day of that season. Sure 38 isn't much by today's standards, but one thing was for sure, there was no better hitter in the national league that year than Hojo. But my favorite memory of Hojo was when he got picked up by Colorado. Don't get me wrong I loved the guy! It was for different reasons. Me and my friends actually had a memorial service for him! That was a very, very sad day for me. But I persevered, and I no longer have an unhealthy obsession with my favorite of all-time!

Mike Donnelly
August 20, 2001
So many great memories about this guy that it's hard to pick just one...He's by far the best Third Baseman in New York Mets's history and a legend in his own right. Aside from Piazza, most people would be hard pressed to pick a better all around New York Met than HOJO, Howard Johnson. I had the pleasure of meeting this guy during his magical season of 91 and he was a true class act. The Mets (especially in the Steve Phillips era) have had their share of terrible trades, but one day that will stick in my mind forever is December 7th 1984 where they pulled off one of the best trades ever with the Detroit Tigers: Walt Terrell for HoJo. That is why the Tigers have been my second favorite team since then. HOJO: HOF 2002 (despite being a career 251 hitter)

Coach HoJo 20
December 16, 2001
The Coach is now the new manager of the Brooklyn Cyclones! This is very cool to hear but I wish this guy was on the coaching staff of the NY Mets. HoJo brings the knowledge of being a great hitter and a World Series Champion, this will aide the progress of many youngsters but I think his assets would be of better use on the NY Mets. Hopefully this will happen sooner rather than later.

Ben Frishman
January 27, 2002
I am not sure why Hojo is my favorite player of all time. I guess that since I was a kid right during the height of his career that would be an easy explanation. Hojo is my favorite player of all time because he is (in my opinion) the coolest player of all time. I have a goatee and subliminaly it is prob because of Hojo.

February 5, 2002
HoJo excited me with his big homers and made me cringe when they put him in to play shortstop and later, the outfield. My one truly memorable moment of HoJo came in 1989. He was appearing at a drugstore in Floral Park that day, and as luck would have it, we passed by coincidentally as he was at the tail end of his autograph session. My parents stopped, and we hurried inside. He was set to leave in about 5 minutes, and there was no line, just HoJo, a small card table, and a stack of glossy photos taken from spring training. I got the autograph and went on my way, a very happy 11 year old. But the story does not end there... In the car on the way home, my parents and I laughed because HoJo had this silly grin on his face. His teeth spread ear to ear, eyes had an almost crazy look to them as he stood facing the camera with a bat over his left shoulder. Upon futher examination I found a possible explanation why HoJo had such a silly expression on his face: his fly was open.

Brian Lehmann
February 10, 2002
"the Hoje Monster" as I called him, was by far and away my favorite Met as a kid. The first time I really took notice of him was in '87 during a doubleheader against the Pirates. He had struck out, but on a past ball ran full speed and slid in head first to reach base. He then stole second and scored on a single by Kevin Elster. The next time up batting lefty he pulled a pitch into the mezzanine in right field, which he seemed to do time and time again.

An all-out Mr. Hustle kind of guy!! He brought many a smile to my face and brightened up my childhood.

I still have a framed picture and his Starting Lineup action figure on display in my room.

Oh yeah, I'm sure Todd Worrell has some choice words for HoJo.

a mets fan
April 5, 2002
Hojo was a very good player for the Mets. He always gave his best always had a great attitude towards everything always put a smile on his face and was a Met team leader. Tell me does he look a little bit like potato on the Mets in the movie Rookie of the Year?

Eric Hillman
April 23, 2002
I played with Howard briefly for a few years. Briefly because I didn't last very long in NY. Coming into the clubhouse for the 1st time in 92 was pretty intimidating. Willie Randolph, Eddie Murray, Doc etc... Howard was wide eyed and greeted me with an open smile and handshake. He did it with everyone on the team and really tried to make the big leagues a little more relaxing for the new guys. I just saw him a few months ago when we both worked the Mets fantasy camp. He's still in great shape and yet again, still greeted me with an open smile and hand shake. Some guys were born to be Mets!

Justin Kennedy
April 23, 2002
Personally my favorite player ever. Here's a guy who could smack the hell out of the ball, a great all around player, he played SS,3B and OF when you needed him too and was a always a threat to steal when he was on base. I'd really like to see him eventually become the Mets batting coach, he is currently for the Brooklyn Cyclones. I still have a HoJo poster up in my room and have no plans to take it down in the future.

May 16, 2002
HoJo was an all out type of guy. My favorite memory was a game in 1991 or 1992. HoJo got hit by a pitch then stole 2nd (the ball hit him as he slid in), stole 3rd and then scored on a shallow fly ball to right field. I thought that really summed up his career. An all out guy. A true Met. I hope they at least retire his number some day.

May 29, 2002
While he was one of the most feared power hitters in the game 1987-1991, I don't think that HoJo has the stats to be considered for the Hall of Fame.

July 19, 2002
Went born again and it was like the Twilight Zone where the robot pitcher gets a heart. he sucked thereafter.

December 24, 2002
I always felt terrible any time Darryl Strawberry recieved any accolades. Hojo was his antithesis-- he handled himself like a pro every day. Yes, he went born again, but never preached it.

I used to tell my little leaguers making one handed Darryl-esque catchers to watch the game and try to imitate Hojo instead. He was a guy who acted like a man.

Guy Williams
December 24, 2002
Great guy, nice person. Had some great numbers for a couple of years but didn't ever get the Mets to the playoffs and appropriately made the last out in the 88 playoffs. Mets wouldn't have won the World Series in 86 had Hojo won the third base job. The worst the Mets played the better Hojo's numbers. Having said that, he was still a class act and for that the man deserves the praise.

David Block
January 25, 2003
I just came back from Mets Fantasy Camp, 2003. I got to hit (or try to hit!) Eric Hillman, who was back again and commented above, but I'm writing because I was lucky enough to have had HoJo as my manager down there!

He is a super nice guy, soft-spoken, and great to be around.

I reminded him of a homer he hit in Pittsburgh in 1988: the Pirates were surging in August,the Mets were up by only a few games, and we were down by a run, 2-1 or 3-2, with two out and nobody on. HoJo was our last hope. With two strikes the Pirate fans were on their feet, cheering for the third strike. The noise was deafening, and HoJo hit one into the rightfield seats.

He went around the bases in total silence. All the air went out of Three River Stadium with HoJo's blast, and the Pirates' season was over.

HoJo told me that this was one of his favorite homers, and he remembered it well. He said that the Pirate catcher went out to the mound before the pitch and told his pitcher to throw only curves to HoJo, but when he put down two fingers the pitcher shook him off. He threw the fastball anyway, and HoJo nailed it into the seats! He said, "You're right. You could hear a pin drop as I went around the bases."

He managed in Brooklyn last year. Tim Tuefel will be managing Brooklyn this year, but HoJo will be managing Port St. Lucie this year.

Super guy. We all enjoyed talking with him and playing for him.

Adam Tenzer
January 28, 2003
Growing up, Hojo was definitely an idol of mine. In his heyday, he proved himself to be a clutch performer and a fantastic presence in the clubhouse. Anyway, I had the opportunity to meet him when I was 13 years old, at a baseball memorabilia show in New Jersey. My best friend actually had one of Hojo's batting helmets from the 1986 World Series (a batboy had thrown it over the dugout during Game 5), and Hojo signed it and was an extremely nice guy. It's something I won't forget, and it's really special when a childhood hero lives up to the lofty expectation of being a classy and thoughtful off-the-field individual.

March 24, 2003
HoJo is the reason I started watching baseball! I got into him and my boyfriend/became husband always made sure I got every baseball card of HoJo and could watch every game on TV. Living in NC we travelled to Cincinnati or Atlanta every summer to watch HoJo.

Last year we travelled to Aberdeen, Maryland to see the Cyclones play the Ironbirds. I wore my old Howard Johnson Mets jersey and loved every minute of watching him hold practice with his team.

I caught the only practice ball that went over the rails. HoJo not only signed the ball...and my jersey but when my husband told him that we drove 7 hrs just to meet him, he was so flattered that he made me feel like I was the most important person at the ballpark. He put his arm around my shoulders and took a picture. After he left and continued signing autographs for people who came forward he turned back to me and let me know again how thankful he was of me. I told him thanks for being such a wonderful player and person!

To me, NO one ranks up with HoJo's swing and drive except Mike Piazza. Maybe I saw some HoJo in him. HoJo will always be in the Hall of Fame to me.

Maxwell Kates
April 7, 2003
HoJo had a funny way of signing autographs late in his career. One time I saw some kids trying to get autographs with a notepad and a pen on a fishing line. They'd reel in the pad, and hope to fish out an autograph. One of them got a genuine "Howard Johnson 20." So I asked if I could put a baseball card in their fishing line with their notepad, and they refused. Good thing. The other person reeled in their notepad, and all they got from HoJo was "HI DORK."

Jeff In Florida
July 22, 2003
Why did HOJO suffer from the one year on and one year off symptoms? It happens with some players (Bret Saberhagen for example.) It just seems that in the years the Mets won (86, 88) he was lousy, and in the years they came close (87, 89) he was great.. Follow that up with an off year in 1990, a great year in 91 and a bad year in 1992. Do you see the way it went?

August 4, 2003
The guy is still my favorite Met. He's a class act and a great person. HoJo will always have a place in everyone's hearts. It was just a shame to see someone go from tearing it up in the late 80's to disappearing in the early 90's. Nonetheless, HoJo is my favorite all time Met. It was great to see him coach the Cyclones in Brooklyn last year.

Eric Krupin
August 29, 2003
As Solzhenitsyn wrote, "The grass has grown thick on the grave of my youth." But I still remember from the heady days of '86 our affectionate salute - "HoJo's a hero!" And so he was.

Danny Baseball
January 19, 2004
HOJO has to be the greatest Met third baseman of all time. He's also the coolest, next to my idol SId Fernandez. Growing up in the 80's I had the pleasure of watching him smash moonshots into the night at Shea stadium. I also had the pleasure of meeting him in 2001 at KeySpan park in Coney Island. THanks for the memories and the autograph ball.

April 10, 2004
Howard may not have been the best baseball player ever but he did make the 30 30 club three times, lead league in home runs, and all this without the steroids that the greats use today,

May 16, 2004
Does anyone other than me remember that Howard Johnson, as a member of the 1984 Tigers, was held out of the World Series by Sparky Anderson - because he "couldn't handle the pressure"? Thanks for sending him our way Sparky, we liked Howard Johnson's all star caliber seasons! Plus - I met him once and he was a nice guy.

Feat Fan
June 13, 2004
"Maybe they should see if his body is corked."

Ho Jo's quote around 15 years ago when asked about Bo Jackson.

July 13, 2004
It was unfortunate how the Mets tried to turn him into something he was not -- the new Darryl Strawberry, moving him to center field, where he was very weak defensively. He just did not like being in the center of the spotlight.

A great hitter, a good team player, a genial nice guy, and I'm glad he's managing and coaching with the Mets now.

When the Mets got him, I asked Jay Horwitz if they still had Ronald McDonald on the roster. Jay said no. I said, "Too bad. You should go out and get a player named Burger King, too."

October 10, 2004
The main reason the Mets moved HoJo to centerfield was because he had hurt his shoulder. The Mets were concerned that making throws from different arm angles, like any infielder would have to do, may cause more strain on his shoulder. Although the throw from center would/could be longer, it would always be made with his natural motion of over the top. And yes, he was not good in centerfield!

Brian Owen
October 11, 2004
I am so happy to say that I met my idol Hojo today and he is the coolest guy I've ever met. He says he's hoping to coach third base next year with the Mets. Hopefully he'll grow his beard back for good luck.

Tom Frangione
October 20, 2004
Got to meet and play golf with him at a Mets alumni outing today (10/18/04). A great athlete, terrific team mate and a truly classy guy. Stats are only half the story here, but even so... a THREE TIME 30/30 member! The Mets are lucky to have him in the system, coaching the up and coming players. Thanks, HoJo.

October 23, 2004
I was born in 1982 so I don't have many memories of Howard Johnson, but what I do remember is being a little Met fan in the late 80's and being in love with HoJo. I even remember making my parents stay at Howard Johnson motels when we would go out of town. I never went anywhere without his baseball card. Let's just say I love Howard Johnson.

October 23, 2004
I met Hojo a few weeks ago. He was the coolest guy. He said we might see him coaching third base next year. 30/30

Here is a link to a picture of HOJO, me, my cousin and my friend.

October 27, 2004
It is hard to say anything negative about HoJo. Gave 100% all the time and the result was power, RBI and speed. He was not a great fielder but he did battle, BAZOOKA arm!

He was having a big year in 1991 and the Mets tried to sign him to a muli-year Multi Million contract that was at market value for that time, HoJo turned it down so he could see what the expanding ($$) free agent market would get him in two years when his current contract expired. HoJo had a choice to take the security of the new deal the Mets had offered him or roll the dice to see what he could get in two years as a free agent. HoJo screwed himself, he LOST. Injuries killed him and in 1992 and 93 he was nothing but a shadow of himself, nobody including the Mets wanted his services.

Joe McIlvaine was coming back to the Mets as a GM in 1993. HoJo kept saying “Joe knows what I can do” in regard to hoping that the Mets would sign him to a new deal. McIlvaine knew what HoJo could do in 1991 and earlier, that player was now gone for good. I still remember HoJo saying when he left the Mets how glad he was to get out of here, he was nothing but frustrated at the results of his own decision not to take that contract before the injuries!

Mets fans love HoJo and HoJo loves NY, just a man having a difficult time living with the consequences of his own decisions, just LIFE. Best of Luck to HoJo, he is a good guy!

Tom Shannon
March 8, 2005
''2 and 2 to Howard Johnson, Mets need a long ball. And they might have it....this ball is out of here and this game is tied.....So Much for Fate''

-Tim Mcarver 1986 Busch Stadium (wipe that silly smirk off Whitey Herzog's face)

flushing flash
March 14, 2005
And Whitey probably confiscated HoJo's bat after that home run.

Tom Shannon
April 15, 2005
In 1996 I was at the Hall of Fame Game in Cooperstown New York. It was a sweltering July afternoon and Hojo was playing first base for the Cubs. A man a few rows in front of us started heckling Howard, saying, "Hojo why don't you strike out you bum? You suck!"

So before I could say anything, my father yells out, "Shut up you f***ing Worm!"

Hojo proceeds to hit a home run on the next pitch and my father then yells "Eat that, Worm!"

The "Worm" leaves 2 innings later. In the 7th inning, Hojo was finished warming up the infield and he threw the ball about 20 rows into the crowd, right into my bare hands.

What a great day!

Jonathan Stern
April 17, 2005
I don't know how it's possible for a player to be so good you know before he steps to the plate that he is about to hit one out, yet even then so look unbelievably insecure and uncomfortable. Hojo was that type of player, sad to say. He was miscast as a superstar and the pressures he heaped on himself, combined with Torborg's ridiculous decision to put him in centerfield, eventually broke him. I won't say that I knew he was going to collapse as a player, but I wasn't shocked when he did. Of course, even today I am amazed at how drastic the fall was.

Still, his excellent post-1986 performances were a major saving grace during the franchise's downward years. I remember standing behind the fence watching the players leave the park after a 1992 game. A beautiful young blonde was screaming and squealing for Hojo. When he showed up, he signed autographs and after the girl got hers, she carried on like a Beatlemaniac. She was cute. If you were there, you had to laugh.

Hojo might well have been the happiest person in Shea after the Game 6, '86 Buckner play. After all, he was due to bat after Mookie - and was the first to greet Ray Knight at home plate.

George Felonbrenner
May 12, 2005
Childhood favorite. As a 9 year old, I absolutely idolized the guy. Though his average wasn’t up to par, he had great power numbers.

HOJO is the type of player that made me a Mets fan. He wasn't a flashy, media hyped, glamor gal that you'd find on the Yankees. He was a blue collar, down to Earth player who was CLUTCH. A small town-big town hero of sorts. Never got the ink he deserved and surely won't be remembered by the casual fan, but to those of us who watched him, he's a legend in our hearts.

July 8, 2005
In 1986, one of my favorite years by far, I met HoJo at a department store in Babylon, NY. He was there to sign autographs. I arrived 4 hours early so I could be first on line. I got on line 6 different times and HoJo signed everything I asked him to. I almost blinded him with all the flash pictures I was taking of him. He even showed me his World Series ring he had gotten with the Tigers.

I remember thinking I wanted to marry him. I was 16 at the time.

He will always be one of my favorite Mets, along with Bob Bailor and Robin Ventura.

I remember going to a game and sitting in the picnic area and HoJo started in left field that game. It was great. He was the team clown and just always seemed to be in a good mood. The 1989 season was one of HoJo's best. I will always dislike Ray Knight for replacing my HoJo.

I recently saw him at a game in PA. He was coaching the Cyclones. I wish he was coaching the Mets.

Lifelong Fan
July 25, 2005
Have to give the guy respect for putting up with that ridiculous experiment to make him an outfielder. A clutch hitter, good power and rifle-armed. He partied too hard in the mid to late 80s.

October 2, 2005
Was always one of my favorite Mets. The amazing thing about Hojo is so many baseball people doubted him. Sparky Anderson refused to play him in the 1984 World Series as he only had 1 at-bat. Anderson had no confidence in him. I remember reading an article in a magazine (I can't remember which) during the 1987 season that told a story of Sparky shaking his head in disbelief after one of his coaches told him that Hojo hit another homer. He played whatever position the team asked him to play. i.e. shortstop or right field, even if those positions exposed him. But heaven help any fastball over the middle of the plate. He was a huge lift in 1987 and made the end of the 1991 season worth watching when he led the league in homers and RBIs.

October 13, 2005
Just looking at his stats, I either forgot or didn't realize that he never had back to back good seasons. Only 1-25 in playoffs, the lowest average for any Met in playoff history. Even Jerry Koosman had more hits in the playoffs.

Give him credit: has done wonders with the minor leaguers, especially David Wright and I would not be shocked if he is coaching in the majors in the near future.

June 2, 2006
I first saw HoJo in a Florida State League Game. He was with the Lakeland Tigers at the time. The only reason I really remembered him was, because this drunk fan kept sceaming at the top of his lungs, "Your motels and restaurants suck." Pretty funny thing to hear when you're 12.

October 4, 2006
My favorite player growing up. I kept his rookie card in a case in a separate shoe box and never regretted paying 20 times what it is worth now.

December 8, 2006
Great to see him get a job with the Mets. He'll no doubt help the younger guys. Remember he was Wright's hitting coach in Norfolk

Tom L
February 14, 2007
Tim McCarver had the best comment regarding the corked bat incident. He suggested that maybe Herzog and Pena should be checking HoJo's forearms for cork instead of his bat!

July 21, 2007
I grew up in a town named Kingsport, Tennessee and was absolutely THRILLED when I won season tickets to all home games for the Kingsport Mets one year. The Kingsport Mets are the Appalachian Rookie League, for those who don't know. Although I'd always loved baseball, I've been a Mets fan ever since. Just one of those things, I guess.

But my all time favorite season and all time favorite player was (and remains to be) 1989 and the GREAT HOWARD JOHNSON! I don't have any fancy baseball lingo or favorite quotes to explain why. He just held himself in a manner that drew your attention and kept it, a class act all the way, knowing there was no "i" in team.

He was one of those players who, when he walked up to the plate, you caught yourself holding your breath when the ball left the pitchers' hand, only to let it go when you heard the crack of the bat. You just KNEW the ball was over the fence, he was landing safely on base, or somebody was coming home!

And that, my fellow fans, is why the chants of "HoJo" still echo in the memories of my mind nearly 20 years later!

Jamey Bumbalo
August 6, 2007
It's great to have HoJo back with the Mets! He was a classy player, brings back memories of the wonderful '86 season, and deserves all the positive acclaim. I loved seeing him in the coach's box whenever a Met got to first--now we have to settle for an occasional quick shot in the dugout.

Mets fan in Maine
September 3, 2007
Supposedly HoJo is the only member of the 30-30-30 club: in 1991, 38 HR, 30 SB, and 31 errors (18 at 3B, 11 at SS, 2 in OF). Sorry to be negative, since I like HoJo, appreciate all he did for the Mets, and love seeing him back in the Mets' dugout.

October 13, 2008
He was frustrating because he was so good offensively and then he'd make these crazy, awful errors. It was as if his defense would cancel out his offense and make him a wash. I particularly remember his penchant for bad throws. It's funny that he is mentioned as being David Wright's mentor. Wright's errors are similar in type to the ones Howard used to make.

Joe Figliola
October 17, 2008
From what I've heard, Hojo was so upset over the Mets' two-week swoon that a bunch of the '86 Mets on hand for Shea's closing ceremony had to console him. I don't blame Hojo for being so upset; I'd be too if I was a manager/coach/GM and saw gutless play like that from my players.

I'd like to see more '86 Mets (i.e., Backman, Carter, Teufel, Ojeda) involved as field personnel with Hojo next year. Even today, they bonded together to support a teammate just like they did when they won a World Series. The intangibles they would bring would teach this roster a thing or two about being more of a team.

Vince once again
October 20, 2008
As I had written previously in my Keith Hernandez comment, I once heard a Yankee fan disdainfully refer to Howard Johnson as "a bum." At the time, the Yankees were 'blessed' with the presence of Mike Pagliarulo as their third baseman. In 1987 Pagliarulo hit 32 homers, drove in 87 runs and batted .234. This was Pagliarulo's best season ever. Johnson's homer totals during five consecutive seasons were 36, 24, 36, 23 and 38. His RBI totals were 99, 68, 101, 90 and 117. Pags averaged two steals a year while Johnson averaged 24 a year. Johnson's on base plus slugging was .786 while the mighty Pags was .714. Johnson was clearly by any standard a far superior player to Pagliarulo yet simply because he wore a Met uniform this Yankee fan idiot felt he was a bum. When fans make negative distinctions about players due to the team they play for they dishonor and disrespect the game. Please, the sportswriters dishonor and disrespect the game enough by implying that managing and playing on the major league level is easy. The fans, not having axes to grind due to daily exposure to the locker room should know better.

January 2, 2010
I remember watching tv (perhaps MTV?) and Howard Johnson came on to introduce a music video. It was "Everybody Wants to Rule the World" by Tears for Fears. I had never heard the song before, but HoJo said he really loved it. So I listened closely, and found myself liking it too.

Even to this day, whenever I hear that song, I think of HoJo.

NB Buff
April 9, 2017
Hojo was a productive player for the Mets. Three times he had 30 homers and 30 stolen bases in the same season. In 1991, Johnson became the first (and still only) Met ever to lead the National League in RBIs. He was also the team's first player to appear in an All-Star Game as a third baseman - which had been an ongoing cursed position for the Orange and Blue. When I look at the plaques in the Mets Hall of Fame, I don't see one for Howard. He had a better Mets career than most of the guys who are enshrined there.

Hojo is also the answer to a pair of good trivia questions:

-Who was the on-deck hitter when Mookie Wilson hit his famous grounder that got past Bill Buckner?

-Who was the last Detroit Tiger to wear uniform #5 before it was retired for Hank Greenberg?

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