Very Superstitious

The New York Mets and the Sports Illustrated Cover Jinx

Pitcher Matt Harvey of the New York Mets appeared recently on the cover of Sports Illustrated as the "Dark Knight of Gotham" and the best young pitcher in baseball. Harvey is the lone bright spot in a Mets season that is already all but over, and after seeing the cover, Mets fans let out a collective groan: "don't ruin the one good thing we have going."

The Sports Illustrated cover jinx is well documented, even by the magazine itself. SI defined the jinx as "a demonstrable misfortune or decline in performance following a cover appearance" in a 2002 cover story on the 913 "jinxes" in SI history.

The Mets, a team familiar with failure, have suffered mightily at the hands of SI. In fact, the team has a disproportionately high percentage of "jinxed" covers at a 62.5% rate - well above the most recently reported SI average of 37.2%.

Click for the history of the Mets SI jinx, categorized by a focus on manager, pitcher, position player, and team.

Position Player

Red covers signify a "jinx", green covers are safe. Click on each cover for its story and outcome.

March 2, 1964

May 6, 1968

April 13, 1970

September 28, 1970

May 22, 1972

October 22, 1973

July 21, 1975

April 18, 1983

April 23, 1984

September 24, 1984

August 25, 1986

October 27, 1986

November 3, 1986

June 13, 1987

July 24, 1989

March 22, 1993

May 23, 1994

February 27, 1995

September 6, 1999

October 17, 2000

November 1, 2000

July 17, 2006

June 18, 2007

February 18, 2008