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Quick Getaway

I had been stewing for a couple of days regarding the text for an upcoming "Best Games I Know" essay about the Mets-Cubs rivalry and had been planning to post the results by mid-afternoon Thursday.

I'm usually pretty good with deadlines, but this is one I'm glad I didn't meet.

I got caught up trying to write and watch at the same time, keeping an eye on the clock with the knowledge that a 25-minute drive to get to work by 4pm meant I needed a quick game to be able to view the entirety.

When the 9th inning started at approximately 3:25, I sent an IM to my father saying "If they get 5 here, I need them to do it in 10 minutes."

It took 16 minutes and by the time of the hits by Msrs Wright and Delgado, I was already in my vehicle and about 2.5 miles from home. The perspective provided by Howie Rose was somewhere between "We've got a brand new shiny one!" and "Matteau, Matteau, Matteau!" and the moment was treated with the proper reverence by the announcing team.

It's appropriate that the game took place on getaway day, because with the lineup that was thrown out there (more C-plus than the "A-minus" rating from Willie Randolph), the only possible way to get a victory would be to steal it.

It is a game that deserves a special place in Mets history and for that we offer up the following tidbits.

* It was the 344th walk-off win in Mets history and the 2nd walk-off win of this Mets-Cubs series. It is the 38th time that the Mets have beaten the Cubs in walk-off fashion.

* Getting 2 walk-off wins in a series against the Cubs is rare, but not totally unusual. It happened in 1962 (consecutive days), 1964 (2 games in a day), 1988 (twice in three Metmorable days), 2002 (in September, when most people stopped paying attention), and now, 2007.

* It was Carlos Delgado's 8th career walk-off hit and 10th career walk-off RBI (2nd this series and 3rd as a Met). It was his first walk-off single since 2001.

* Delgado is the first Met with 2 walk-off RBI against a team in the same series since Mike Cameron had walk-off RBI in back-to-back games against the Tigers in 2004.

* It is the 4th time in Mets history that they rallied from 4+ runs down in the bottom of the 9th for a walk-off win. The other 3 took place in 1999 (5 in the 9th off Curt Schilling, in a 5-4 win), 1997 (the "shiny" 6 in the 9th to tie, with Carl Everett hitting a grand slam, then Bernard Gilkey hitting an extra-inning HR to beat the Expos, 9-6), and 1980 (Steve Henderson's 3-run HR caps a 5-run 9th to beat the Giants, 7-6).

* It is the 39th time in Mets history that a hit turned a deficit into a walk-off win. The Mets have now had walk-off wins of that nature in 3 straight years. That covers the Cliff Floyd 3-run HR against the Angels in 2005, Carlos Beltran's 2-run HR that beat the Cardinals in 2006, and this game.

* It is the 5th time that the Mets have won a game in walk-off fashion with the winning hit being a two-run single. The last was in 1999 when Matt Franco beat Mariano Rivera and the Yankees with one.

* Drilling the numbers down even more, Delgado is the 5th Met to go exactly 1-for-5 in a walk-off win, with the hit being one that erased a deficit and gave the team a walk-off win. The other four are Bruce Boisclair (1976), George Foster (1983), Mike Piazza (1999) and Carlos Beltran (2006). Basically this is a list of players having terrible days who turned them into glorious memories with one swing of the bat.

* This was the 32nd time a Mets walk-off win ended with a final score of 6-5 and though it wasn't the most-signficant (1986 WS, Game 6) or 2nd-best (1986 NLCS Game 3) of those 32 games, it would be in the discussion for 3rd place along with a couple against the Cardinals from 1985 (Opening Day and September 12) and one of my favorites from the 1986 regular season (July 3 vs Astros).

* Alphabetically speaking, Burgos (Ambiorix) slots in right after Bradford (Chad) on the list of Mets walk-off winning pitchers. Both had the good fortune to get walk-off hits from Carlos Delgado in their victories.

* The Mets have previously had May 17th walk-off wins in 1985 (Gary Carter beats the Giants) and 1994 (Joe Orsulak beats the Marlins).

* The Mets entered the series with the Cubs with 342 walk-off wins. They had the same number of walk-off wins as Cubs broadcaster Ron Santo had career home runs. Now, they're two ahead of him.


Anonymous said…
Thus, this was the first walkoff win in Mets history in which a four-run, ninth-inning deficit was overcome without the aid of a home run.

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