John Franco

John Franco #31

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  • B/T: L/L
  • 5' 10"/185

John Franco MLB Career Stats

90-87 2.89 1245.2 975 1.33

John Franco Bio

  • Full Name: John Anthony Franco
  • Born: 9/17/1960 in Brooklyn, NY
  • Draft: 1981, Los Angeles Dodgers, 5th rd. (125th overall)
  • College: St. John's
  • Debut: April 24, 1984
  • Ret., Final Game: 7/1/2005
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MLB Career Stats 90 87 2.89 1119 0 424 1245.2 975 1.33


Note: Opponent can be found on current team or on team when both players met.

John Franco Stats

John Franco Advanced Stats

John Franco Statcast Events


John Franco Awards

NL All-Star

Year Team League
1986 Cincinnati NL
1987 Cincinnati NL
1989 Cincinnati NL
1990 NY Mets NL

Lou Gehrig Award

Year Team League
2001 NY Mets NL

NL Relief Man Award

Year Team League
1988 Cincinnati NL
1990 NY Mets NL

Reds Johnny Vander Meer Award

Year Team League
1986 Cincinnati NL
1987 Cincinnati NL

John Franco Leaderboards


Season W Rank
1985 12 22nd in NL


Season SV Rank
1985 12 13th in NL
1986 29 5th in NL
1987 32 4th in NL
1988 39 1st in NL
1989 32 3rd in NL
1990 33 1st in NL
1991 30 3rd in NL
1992 15 10th in NL
1993 10 15th in NL
1994 30 1st in NL
1995 29 8th in NL
1996 28 10th in NL
1997 36 4th in NL
1998 38 5th in NL
1999 19 15th in NL


Season G Rank
1984 54 24th in NL
1985 67 6th in NL
1986 74 3rd in NL
1987 68 10th in NL
1988 70 4th in NL
1989 60 18th in NL
1990 55 22nd in NL
1994 47 23rd in NL


Season HLD Rank
2000 20 5th in NL
2001 17 10th in NL

John Anthony Franco Bio Info

He and his wife, Rose, make their offseason home in Staten Island, NY, with their daughters, Nicole (May 18, 1988) and Ella Grace (Aug. 16, 2004), and son John James (J.J., Feb. 2, 1992)...graduated from Lafayette High School in Brooklyn, the same high school that Mets' Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Fred Wilpon attended, as well as former Major Leaguers Sandy Koufax and Bob and Ken Aspromonte...played college baseball at St. John's University...pitched two no-hitters in his freshman year against Siena and Adelphi...received the Thurman Award at the annual Thurman Munson Dinner in New York City in February, 1991 to honor his charitable work...recipient of the Good Guy Award given by the New York Press Photographers on Jan. 20, 1996...toured Japan in the fall of 1996 with a Major League All-Star team...inducted into the St. John's University Sports Hall of Fame in January 1998...honored as Staten Island Sportsman of the Year in 1998 by the Staten Island Advance for his humanitarian efforts...was the first recipient of the John Franco Humanitarian Award given annually by St. John's University to a baseball player who has contributed the most to society -- received the award during halftime of the St. John's game on Jan. 20, 2001...honored by the Catholic Youth Organization with the John V. Mara Sportsman of the Year Award on Feb. 2, 2001 for his charitable work...presented with the Phi Delta Theta International Fraternity Lou Gehrig Award -- award is given to the Major League player who best represents the spirit and character of the late Lou Gehrig...was the 2002 local recepient of the Roberto Clemente Award...given the Presidential Medal for committment and service from St. John's University-Staten Island Campus on Nov. 7, 2002...was the 2002 winner of the Joan Payson Award, recognizing his charitable contributions, from the New York Chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America at their annual dinner on Feb. 2, 2003...recepient of the Thurman Munson "Legend" Award on Feb. 3, 2004 for his outstanding service to the community...held the fourth annual "John Franco Celebrity Bowl-for-Babies" on Jan. 30, 2003 to benefit the Staten Island March of Dimes -- from 1999-2004 the bowling event has raised over $1,000,000...donated $5,000 along with teammates Al Leiter, Tom Glavine and Mike Piazza to Tuesday's Children -- the amount was matched by the Mets for a total of $40,000, and the money will be used to create a Mets Scholarship Fund for Tuesday's Children -- Tuesday's Children is a non-profit family services organization that offers an 18-year commitment to children who lost a parent on September 11th...presented a distinguished service award from the FDNY for his heroic efforts assisting the FDNY and their families since 9-11. 2004 Ranks second on the all-time saves list with 424 career saves, behind Lee Smith (478)...holds the National League record for saves (424)...also holds the Major League record for saves by a left-hander...moved into second place on the all-time games pitched list with his 1,072nd career appearance on July 8 for the New York Mets at Philadelphia...has pitched in 1,088 contests...Jesse Orosco is first with 1,248 outings...also second on the all-time relief appearance list (1,088)...Orosco is also first (1,248) of two active pitchers to reach the 1,000 games pitched plateau (also Mike Jackson)...left-handed batters were 0-26 against him from May 13-June 23, which was the longest such streak of his career...for the season, lefties were 13-75 (.173) off him, the seventh best of any NL pitcher with at least 75 at-bats by opposing left-handed hitters...currently the oldest pitcher (age 44) in the Majors and leads all active pitchers with 1,088 appearances...ranks first in Mets history in games pitched (695) and saves (274)...his 695 career games with the Mets is the sixth-most in Major League history for one team...Walter Johnson's 802 games with the Senators and Roy Face's 802 contests with the Pirates are tied for first, Phil Niekro is third with 740 games with the Braves, Kent Tekulve is fourth with 722 contests with the Pirates and Warren Spahn is fifth with 714 appearances with the Braves...there are 120 players who have had more than 10 at-bats against him during his 20-year Major League career...those players have a .239 (287-1, 200) batting average over their first 10 career at-bats against him (courtesy of the Elias Sports Bureau)...notched his second win on July 3 vs. Yankees when he struck out Jorge Posada with the bases loaded in a 10-9 win...has third on the squad with 11 holds...earned his first victory since Sept. 17, 2001 on June 22 vs. Cincinnati in a 7-4 triumph...tossed a season-high 2.0 innings, the most since he also hurled 2.0 innings on Aug. 20, 2003 at San Diego...also pitched 2.0 innings on Aug. 29 vs. Los Angeles...did not allow a run in six outings, spanning 6.0 innings from May 13-25...unscored upon 17 of his first 23 outings to begin the season. 2003 2003
  • Earned his 424th career save and 274th with the Mets (second of the season) on August 24th in a 2-1 victory at Los Angeles when he induced Shawn Green to ground out.
  • Didn't permit a run in 18 of his last 21 appearances (three earned runs in 17.2 innings - 1.53 ERA).
  • Tossed a season-high 2.0 innings on August 20th at San Diego.
  • Moved into sixth place on the All-Time Games Pitched List with 1,023 games with his outing on August 16th vs. Colorado...Now has appeared in 1,036 games...Kent Tekulve is fifth on the list with 1,050 games.
  • Notched his 423rd career save and 273rd save with the Mets on July 21st at Philadelphia with a scoreless inning of work...His last save came on June 19, 2001, in a 4-1 victory over Montreal at Shea.
  • Became the eighth pitcher in M.L. history to play in 1,000 games when he hurled a scoreless inning on June 5th vs. Milwaukee (Game Two).
  • Moved into seventh place on the All-Time Games Pitched List with 1,003 outings on June 12th at Texas with a scoreless inning.
  • Made his first outing since September 29, 2001 at Atlanta on May 30th vs. the Braves with a scoreless inning...Induced Vinny Castilla to ground out with two runners aboard to end the inning.
  • Was activated from the 15-Day Disabled List on May 30th...At age 42, he is the second oldest pitcher to play for the Mets...Warren Spahn was 44 when he pitched for New York in 1965.
  • Ranks second on the All-Time Save List with 424...Lee Smith is first with 478.
  • Is first in club history in games pitched with 643 and saves with 274.
  • Was 0-1 with a 6.23 ERA in four games, three starts during his Major League Rehabilitation with St. Lucie (A) of the Florida State League from May 12th-May 23rd...In 4.1 innings, he allowed six hits, three runs, earned, with one walk and five strikeouts.
  • From May 26th-May 27th, he was 0-0 with a 0.00 ERA in two games in relief for Norfolk (AAA) of the International League...In 1.2 innings, he yielded one hit, no runs, with one walk and two strikeouts.
  • In addition, John pitched in two extended spring training games in Florida and was 0-0 with a 0.00 ERA...In 2.0 innings, he surrendered three hits, one run, unearned, with no walks and one strikeouts.
  • Donated $5,000 along with teammates Al Leiter, Tom Glavine and Mike Piazza to Tuesday's Children. The amount was matched by the Mets totaling $40,000...The money will be used to create a Mets Scholarship Fund for Tuesday's Children...Tuesday's Children is a non-profit family services organization that offers an 18-year commitment to children who lost a parent on September 11th. 2002
  • Placed on the 15-Day Disabled List, retroactive to March 20th, with left elbow tendinitis.
  • An MRI on May 8th of his left elbow revealed an avulsion of the medial collateral ligaments and flexor tendon from the medial epicondyle (elbow) ... The test was performed by Dr. Andrew Rokito at the Hospital for Joint Diseases and NYU Medical Center.
  • Underwent "Tommy John" surgery on his left elbow on May 15th ... The one-hour and 50-minute procedure was performed by Dr. Lewis Yocum, Dr. Frank Jobe along with Dr. Rokito at the Kerlan-Jobe clinic in Los Angeles ... Doctors removed a tendon from his left wrist to replace the damaged medial collateral ligament, then re-attached the flexor tendon ... Transferred to the 60-Day Disabled List on July 31st.
  • Began a throwing rehabilitation program on August 7th.
  • Ranks third among active pitchers with 998 games ... Jesse Orosco is first with 1,187 games pitched ... Franco is also second in ERA (2.75) with a minimum of 1,000 innings ... Boston's Pedro Martinez is first with a 2.62 ERA. 2001
  • Named New York's captain on May 4th in a unanimous vote by the team ... That night, he notched his first save of the season in a 4-2 triumph vs. Arizona ... The last Mets captains were Gary Carter and Keith Hernandez in 1989.
  • Hurled a season-high 2.0 innings on May 11th at San Francisco.
  • Picked up his first win of the year on May 25th with a scoreless inning of work in a 4-3 victory in 10 innings vs. Florida.
  • Struck out the side to increase his record to 2-1 with 1.0 scoreless inning in a 6-5 victory at Philadelphia on June 7th.
  • Won his third game of the year, with 1.0 scoreless frame, June 13th at Baltimore in a 7-6 victory in 10 innings.
  • Notched his second save of the season and the 422nd of his career in a 4-1 triumph vs. Montreal on June 19th ... The 422 saves rank second on the All-Time Save List to Lee Smith's 478.
  • Compiled a 2-0 mark with one save and an 0.00 ERA in the month of June ... In 11 games, he worked 10.2 innings, allowed five hits, no runs, with four walks and 10 strikeouts.
  • Won his third consecutive decision and recorded his fourth win overall with a scoreless inning of work on July 7th against the Yankees at Yankee Stadium in a game the Mets won, 3-0, in 10 innings.
  • Did not permit a run in 15 outings from June 7th-July 15th, spanning a season-high 14.1 consecutive scoreless innings ... During that span he was 3-0, with one save and allowed only six hits, five walks with 14 strikeouts.
  • Moved into a seventh place on the All-Time Games Pitched List with his 988th career appearance on August 10th vs. St. Louis ... Passed Lindy McDaniel, who pitched with the Cardinals, Cubs, Giants, Yankees and Royals from 1955-1975 ... Rich Gossage is sixth on the All-Time List with 1,002 games ... Franco is also second among active pitchers with 998 games and trails only the Dodgers' Jesse Orosco (1,129 games) ... Has pitched in a team record 605 games with the Mets.
  • Is now fifth on the All-Time Relief Appearances List with 998 ... Jesse Orosco is first with 1,129, Kent Tekulve is second with 1,050, Hoyt Wilhelm is third with 1,018 and Lee Smith is fourth with 1,016.
  • Picked up his fifth win of the year on September 8th at Florida in a 9-7 victory.
  • Earned his sixth win of the season on September 17th at Pittsburgh, in a 4-1 victory on his 41st birthday in New York's first game back after the September 11th tragedy ... Worked a scoreless inning with one strikeout while appearing in his 600th game as a Met ... The six wins were the most since he also had six victories in 1992.
  • Finished tied for 11th in the National League with 17 holds.
  • Ranks first on the club's All-Time Saves List with 274 and third with a 2.96 career ERA.
  • For his career at Shea, John is 28-22 with a 2.96 ERA and 150 saves in 332 games ... In 350.0 innings, he has allowed 337 hits, 134 runs, 115 earned, with 125 walks and 307 strikeouts.
  • Had a 20-minute procedure to remove a calcium deposit in his left elbow on December 3rd ... Dr. David Altchek performed the surgery at the Hospital for Special Surgery in Manhattan. 2000
  • Finished the season four-for-five in save opportunities.
  • Stranded 17 of the 22 runners that he inherited.
  • From June 24th-July 27th, he had three wins (June 24th vs. Pittsburgh, July 17th at Toronto and July 27th vs. Montreal, Game One) and a save (his third vs. Florida on June 28th) and didn't allow a run..During that span, he made 13 appearances, spanning 10.2 innings, to set a season-high ... In the streak, he permitted just four hits and recorded 10 strikeouts.
  • Snapped a 10-game losing streak when he picked up an 8-5, 12-inning triumph in Pittsburgh on April 14th ... Worked a season-high 2.0 scoreless innings with one hit ... It was his first victory since September 13, 1997 vs. Montreal.

    POST-SEASON: Earned his first World Series victory with one scoreless inning in Game Three, becoming the second oldest pitcher to win a World Series game (Dolph Luque of the New York Giants was 43 years old when he defeated the Washington Senators on October 7, 1933-Game Five) ... Earned his first post-season save in Game Two of the NLDS vs. San Francisco. 1999

  • Became the second player in major league history to reach the 400-save plateau when he struck out the side to preserve a 4-1 Mets win over the Marlins on April 14th ... Finished the season with 416.
  • Ended the year with 19 saves in 21 opportunities.
  • Placed on the 15-Day Disabled List on July 3rd with a sprained flexor tendon on the middle finger of his left (throwing) hand ... The injury occurred when he threw a pitch in the ninth inning of the July 2nd game against the Braves at Shea ... Made one rehabilitation start for Binghamton (AA) of the Eastern League at New Haven ... Started and retired all four batters he faced as a starter on September 3rd ... Activated from the Disabled List prior to the game on September 4th.
  • Made his first major league appearance since July 2nd when he pitched a scoreless eighth inning against the Rockies at Shea on September 5th.

    POST-SEASON: Pitched a scoreless inning against Arizona in Game Four of the NLDS to pick up the win in the series-clinching game. 1998

  • Broke his own club mark for saves in a season when he picked up his 37th at Houston on September 14th.
  • Gained his 30th save of the year with an inning of relief at Los Angeles on August 28th ... Reached the 30-save plateau for the second straight year and for the eighth time in his career.
  • Appeared in his 402nd game as a member of the Mets on June 19th at Florida, the most ever by a Mets pitcher ... Tom Seaver worked in 401 games with New York. 1997
  • Became the National League All-Time save king.
  • Broke his own club record with his 34th save on September 1st vs. Toronto ... Had 33 saves in 1990 for New York. 1996
  • In a poll conducted by Rolaids, he was voted the Top Lefthanded Relief Pitcher in the Major Leagues in the Last 20 Years (1976-1996).
  • On April 29th vs. the Expos, he picked up his 300th career save, becoming the first lefthanded pitcher in major league history to reach the milestone ... Hurled a scoreless inning in the Mets' 3-2 triumph over Montreal ... Earned his 300th save on the 12th anniversary of his first save in the majors, April 29, 1984, Cincinnati vs. San Francisco.
  • Picked up a save and a victory in a doubleheader vs. Pittsburgh on July 30th.
  • Tied a career-high with five strikeouts in 2.0 innings in a 4-3 loss to Atlanta on June 11th ... Also struck out five for the Reds against the Cardinals on August 27, 1988. 1995
  • Edged out the Cubs' Randy Myers by one point to win the Rolaids Relief Award for September.
  • Worked 3.0 innings at St. Louis on July 26th ... It was his longest outing since working 3.0 innings for the Reds at San Francisco on September 13, 1989. 1994
  • Led the National League in saves for the third time in his career ... Also won the National League Save Title in 1988 and 1990.
  • It was his sixth, 30-plus save season and his third with the Mets.
  • Established two career milestones during the year ... Surpassed Dave Righetti (252) for most saves all-time by a lefthanded pitcher ... Also topped Jesse Orosco's record (107) for most saves by a Met reliever.
  • Selected The Sporting News' National League Fireman of the Year. 1993
  • Began the regular season on the 25-man roster, but pitched in just two games before being placed on the DL on April 24th, retroactive to April 17th, with a tender left elbow ... Was activated from the DL on May 7th ... Did not allow an earned run in his first seven outings after his return, lowering his season ERA to 0.96 on June 2nd.
  • Cut his left thumb in a household accident on September 23rd and was unable to pitch again during the season. 1992
  • Had his season disrupted by injury ... On September 29th, he underwent open surgery on his left elbow to repair a torn flexor tendon ... The 20-minute pro-cedure was performed by Mets' Team Physicians, Dr. David Altchek and Dr. David Dines, at the Hospital for Special Surgery in Manhattan.
  • Was on the Disabled List twice during the year: July 9th, retroactive to June 30th, until August 1st and August 30th, retroactive to August 26th, until the end of the year ... It marked the first time in his career he was placed on the DL. 1991
  • Gained his 200th career save on July 6th at Philadelphia. 1990
  • Led the National League in saves with 33 in 39 opportunities (84.6 percent) ... Led the NL for the second time in his career.
  • Won his second NL Rolaids Relief title with 91 points ... Randy Myers of the Reds was second with 77 points.
  • Selected The Sporting News' National League Fireman of the Year.
  • Set a then-Mets club record with the 33 saves ... Broke Jesse Orosco's record set in 1984 with his 32nd save on September 13th vs. Pittsburgh.
  • Pitched one scoreless inning in the All-Star Game at Wrigley Field on July 10th. 1989
  • Named to the National League All-Star team for the third time, but did not pitch in the game at Anaheim. 1988
  • Led the National League with 39 saves, his career-high ... Posted the 39 saves in 42 opportunities ... Broke Clay Carroll's Reds single-season club record of 37 saves ... Also broke Carroll's career mark of 102 during the season.
  • Won the National League Player of the Week award for the week of July 31st.
  • Selected The Sporting News' National League Fireman of the Year.
  • Set a then all-time major league record for saves in a month with 13 in July (since broken by Lee Smith-15 in June, 1993 and John Wetteland-15 in June, 1996) ... Was the NL Pitcher of the Month in July, when he posted an 0.61 ERA in 14 games (one earned run in 14.2 innings).
  • Posted saves in 12 straight appearances, one short of Steve Bedrosian's NL record ... His streak was ended by an umpire's ejection.
  • Worked 28.0 consecutive scoreless innings, July 17th-September 11th. 1987
  • Led all major league lefthanders with 32 saves and was fifth in the majors overall.
  • Named the NL Pitcher of the Month for September.
  • Pitched the bullpen equivalent of a "no-hitter", allowing no hits or walks in his first 9.0 innings pitched ... Retired 31 of the first 32 batters he faced, the other reaching on an error.
  • Named to the National League All-Star team for the second time ... Retired both batters he faced in the game at Oakland, his first All-Star Game action. 1986
  • Picked for the National League All-Star team for the first time, but did not pitch. 1985
  • Led all relievers in the majors with a career-best 12 wins ... Appeared in 67 games, sixth in the National League.
  • Won a career-high 11 straight games from May 24th to September 7th. 1984
  • Began the season at Wichita (AAA) of the American Association, but was called up in late April.
  • Made his major league debut on April 24th at Atlanta.
  • Notched his first save on April 29th vs. San Francisco, then recorded his first major league win two days later at Houston.