Ultimate Mets Database
Privacy Statement

Search the thousands of Mets players, managers, coaches, executives, minor leaguers, and opposing players who are contained in our database.

John Candelaria
vs. the Mets
John Candelaria
vs. Other Teams
Game Log Pitching
Memories of
John Candelaria
John Candelaria
Ultimate Mets Database popularity ranking: 318 of 1043 players
John Robert Candelaria
Born: November 6, 1953 at New York, N.Y.
Throws: Left Bats: Both
Height: 6.06 Weight: 225


First Mets game: September 18, 1987
Last Mets game: September 28, 1987

Share your memories of John Candelaria


I attended LaSalle Academy High School with The Candy Man and he was one the greatest high school basketball players ever. He beat Tom Seaver in his first pro start June 20th, 1975 at Shea Stadium.

May 18, 2001
One of the uglier guys to grace a Mets uniform...

Mike Michela
November 19, 2001
Another attempt by the Mets to bring a big name pitcher to NY and did diddly squat when he was here.

Candelaria Viola Saberhagen Marshall from LA the list goes on.......

Larry Burns
June 4, 2002
This guy rivaled Juan Berenger as the ugliest Mets ever. His hatred of NY spurred him to leave the Mets for the Yankees? This guy does not even lie well. He actually had a good career with the Pirates, but he became a major booze hound and threw his career away. Unlike most of his compatriots, he did it with legal substances.

Jonathan Stern
November 6, 2005
The Candyman couldn't.

The 1987 Mets brought him in to aid their pennant run and he did not deliver. Then he was gone. That they turned to him at all (after trying out Seaver and several other over-the-hillers) was a telling measure of how much the team was hurting even then, a big reason being Doc's drug problems.

Candelaria also had a pitching meltdown for the tragic 1986 Angels. He did not, however, fail as a member of the 1979 Pirates, one of my least favorite teams as a child ("We are Family!/I got all my sisters with me!"). Yecch.

Kevin C
August 24, 2006
I agree with Bigstro, Candyman was a great basketball player and La Salle had Gary Druitt and Kevin King on that team. I saw him play at St. Helena's HS gym and then again in the NY City Catholic HS playoffs. I too remember that win against Seaver---not sure why Mets didn't draft him, but then again he did not play HS baseball---all baseball talent developed in sandlot leagues if I remember right.

Mark Tartaglione
September 6, 2008
When I think of John Candelaria, I think of the song "The Candy Man". The lyrics went "The Candy Man Can" When it comes to this particular Met, It should read, "The Candy Man Couldn't" He was horrible down the stretch in 1987!

Daniel Candelaria
March 30, 2009
John Candelaria is my cousin. So all you punks who said that stuff. John had a great heart and played very well. So open your eyes maybe you"ll see him. I thank the people who said nice stuff. John Candelaria is the best!

Mike B
April 3, 2009
Simply put, the Candyman could pitch.

April 3, 2009
I was a minor league player with the Pirates in spring training of 1981. It was right after Dave Parker signed that big contract and came to camp 30 or 40 lbs heavy. He was supposed to be getting into shape. I went into the clubhouse after workout and there sat Dave Parker and Candy. They had finished their work and had ordered a hundred dollars worth of ribs and a case of beer. They sat there devouring the ribs and just flinging the bones backwards over their shoulders. When they finished a beer they would squeeze the can and fling that too over their shoulder. Ahhhh spring training....the good life!

Ralph Kramden
August 9, 2010
One thing I remember about the Candy Man were his enormous hands. When he held a baseball it looked like it was the size of a lemon. No wonder he had such great movement on his pitches. Not that it helped the Mets of course.

tony bracci
January 10, 2014
He started having back problems around '78 or '79, so you'd see him toss 6 or 7 great innings, and then he'd have to be taken out, but with Tekulve, Romo, and Jackson in the pen, you still figured for the win. I swear every time I went to Buc Night -- for you New Yorkers, this was a Wednesday night game in Pittsburgh where the parking, beer, concessions, program, and cheap seat ticket cost $1!! You could go with your Dad and two friends to the park, and Dad would shell out all of $5 (the concessions, well your friends better have their own money for that...and you couldn't buy anything if your friends weren't able to; those are the values we were brought up with). This is like $20 in today's money, still a great bargain. Anyway, every time I went to Buc Night, it seemed that the Phillies were in town and Candelaria was the starter (either against Carlton or Lerch). Schmidt would always seem to come through with a big hit, but the Bucs were such a gritty team in the early 80s...you didn't dare leave the game, because they were often able to manage a comeback in the 8th or 9th inning. The organist would play "The Candy Man" ditty when John took the mound....and of course The Spinners "Rubber Band Man" would play on the P.A. system when Tekulve came in relief. Man, what fun times.

Meet the Mets
  • All-Time Roster
  • Mug Shots
  • Player Awards
  • Transactions
  • Managers and Coaches
  • Mets Staff
  • Birthplaces
  • Oldest Living Mets
  • Necrology
  • Games
  • Game Results
  • Walkoff Wins and Losses
  • Post-Season Games
  • No-Hitters and One-Hitters
  • All-Star Games
  • Opponents and Ballparks
  • Daily Standings
  • Yearly Finishes
  • Mayor's Trophy Games
  • Stats
  • Interactive Statistics
  • Team Leaders
  • Decade Leaders
  • Metscellaneous
  • Fan Memories
  • Mets Uniforms
  • Uniform Numbers
  • About Us
  • Contact us
  • FAQ

  • Copyright 1999-2017, The Ultimate Mets Database