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UnforMETable, Episode 73: Joe Sambito

The All-Star reliever was unable to find his form with the 1985 Mets—or against the 1986 Mets in the World Series.

Welcome to UnforMETable, an Amazin’ Avenue Audio show that looks back on less heralded, more obscure Mets players from the past.

The Brooklyn-born Joe Sambito had a dominant stretch as a reliever for the Houston Astros in the late 70s and early 80s. While he had great personal success—making an appearance in the All-Star Game in 1979—his team couldn’t quite get over the hump in the playoffs, suffering heartbreaking playoff defeats in 1980 and 1981.

Sambito’s career was derailed in 1982 by Tommy John surgery. He wouldn’t make it back to the majors until 1984, and could never quite regain his previous form. He hoped to get back to form with his hometown team, but struggled mightily for the 1985 Mets.

As fate would have it, he would latch on with Boston in 1986, where he would assume a role in the bullpen for a team that would finally see some playoff success—only to fall short in the World Series against the Mets.

If you’ve got an idea for a player to be featured on UnforMETable, let us know in the comments.

Make sure to follow Rob on Twitter (@WolffRR), and you can now follow the show, too (@unformetable). Tune in next week for another tale from the Mets’ past.