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And so we begin...

Hobie Landrith holds a handful of distinctions in baseball history

1- He is the only person to play in the major leagues named "Hobie."

2- He was the Mets first pick in the expansion draft, prompting the famous quote from Casey Stengel. "You gotta have a catcher or you're gonna have a lot of passed balls." (The Mets used seven catchers in 1962 and had 26 passed balls)

Most importantly to us...

He is responsible for the first walk-off win in Mets history...

Landrith's pinch-hit two-run home run off Hall of Famer Warren Spahn enabled the Mets to beat the Milwaukee Braves 3-2, at the Polo Grounds, in Game 1 of a doubleheader on May 12, 1962. The book "The Complete Year-By-Year New York Mets Fan's Almanac" describes Landrith as laughing as he rounded the bases, because the distance on his homer was barely more than 250 feet, in the horseshoe-shaped stadium.

Approximately four hours later, Gil Hodges launched the second walk-off home run in Mets history, as the Mets scored once in the eighth inning and once in the ninth to beat Hank Fischer, 8-7.

This game was referenced in several newspaper accounts in 2004 (with information presumably obtained from the Elias Sports Bureau) as the first doubleheader in major-league history in which both games ended with a walk-off home run.

Three days later, Landrith was involved in another walk-off, and this one relied more on his forte. Landrith was not a power hitter- his high for a season was five and he finished his career with 34- he was better known for his walking (253 career BB, raising a .238 BA to a .325 OBP). In the 13th inning that day against the Cubs, Landrith plated the winning run with a bases-loaded walk, the Mets 15th walk of the game.

The funny thing about Landrith, was that, in a manner of speaking, he had already made some Mets history- on May 9, 1962, the Mets traded a player-to-be-named later to Baltimore for first baseman Marv Throneberry. The Orioles received Landrith on June 7.

True Metsophiles know...Hobie Landrith's walk-off home run was his only homer with the Mets. Others whose only Mets home run was a walk-off include Billy Baldwin, Esix Snead, and for now, Craig Brazell.


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