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Been There, Won That

The Dodgers had 19 hits in their loss to the Mets on Thursday night in a game that, no offense (pardon the ironic pun), was excruciating to watch for many, many reasons, none of which I feel like getting into at this hour. Willie Randolph summed it up in his press conference afterwards, saying simply "It's not fun!" I wonder if Tom Hanks, Alyssa Milano, Ray Romano and Kareeem Abdul-Jabaar (all in attendance) stuck around for the finish?

I do wish to note briefly, again with the aid of Baseball-Reference, that the last time the Dodgers had 19 hits and lost a game, it was to the Mets. The difference between that game and this one was that this contest, of May 24, 1973, lasted an interminable 19 innings., with the Mets winning, 7-3. Rusty Staub's fifth hit of the game drove in the go-ahead run. Ken Boswell added an RBI single and Ed Kranepool salted the game away with a two-run double. Some other noteworthy anecdotes from a quick box score gleaning:

* Like Thursday's game, the 1973 clash was started by a Tom (Seaver) against a sinkerballer (Tommy John). Those two were much better than Msrs Glavine and low, combining to allow five runs in 12 1/3 innings of work.

* Tug McGraw's five inning stint produced plenty of heart palpatations, as did that of just about every Mets reliever on Thursday night. McGraw worked five scoreless frames (innings 8-12), allowing four hits and walking five. George Stone earned the first of a dozen Mets wins that season with six shutout innings of his own.

* Like Thursday night, the Mets had six players with two or more hits, paced by Staub's five. Cleon Jones and George Theodore each supported the effort with three hits, with Theodore knocking in the tying run in the 8th inning to force the bonus baseball.

* The Mets starting catcher that day was a Jerry, but not Grote. Jerry May made the first of four appearances as a Met to close out his brief career (somewhat akin to Sandy Alomar Jr.) and had two hits. His debut contribution may not have been as noteworthy of that of Marlon Anderson's re-Mets debut, but I thought it was worth drawing the parallel.

* The teams combined to leave 40 men on base, which partly explains why it ended at nearly 5 a.m. eastern time (according to This Date In Mets History).

* And last, but not least (for now), while the Dodgers stars that day were Willies Davis (6 hits)and Crawford (4 hits), it should be noted that the starting first baseman that day was Bill Buckner, who went a paltry 1-for-8. That's also pertinent to this date, because those of you who received your copies of Sports Illustrated on Thursday may have found interest in Buckner's wife's letter to the editor, criticizing the mag for referencing Buckner's goat status in reference to his son, now an athletic standout himself.

True Metsomniacs know...The Mets have allowed 19 hits in a win on one other occasion- the second game of a doubleheader on September 28, 1979, in which they preserved their 99-loss status with a 7-6 11-inning win over the Cardinals. Prior to Thursday, the Mets team record for most hits allowed in a nine-inning win was 18, in an 11-9 win over the Pirates on September 10, 1978.


Anonymous said…
How this game truly compares to 5/24/73 remains to be seen. Stone was on the verge of getting released and then became a vital part of the pitching staff. It's hard to imagine Guillermo Mota doing anything WELL this year, and he looked like he would blow this game. But they won, which is what counts in the end.
For all it did for Stone, it didn't help the Mets in the short run in '73. They followed by losing four straight.
-- Barry Federovitch
Anonymous said…
I'll go one better. This game reminded me more of Bob Murphy's 'The Mets win the damn thing' game than the '73 game.
Ironically, earlier in the day I was pondering how the Mets couldn't win a game in which their pitchers allowed more than three runs. Around the same time, I remembered that the Phillies hadn't been in a game where the winning team scored fewer than FIVE runs in, get this, FIVE weeks. So what happens? The Mets and Dodgers can't stop scoring and the Padres beat the Phils, 1-0.
Odd night.
Anonymous said…
I had visions of 2005's Worst Loss Ever, July 8, 2005: The deLooperfication that took place in Pittsburgh on the Friday night before the All-Star Break. What with Marlon Anderson back in the house, everything two years old is new again.

Except this time we got out of our own way and held on.
Anonymous said…
I went to an extra-inning affair at Shea in the early 70s. The Mets hit a grand slam in the 1st and took a 4-0 lead, and didn't get a hit again until the 10th or 11th inning (they won 5-4). Any idea of the date or opponent? Thanks.
Unknown said…
Forget about Kareem & Alyssa Milano sticking around. I can't believe Glavine stuck around. Did you see him on the bench after he got pulled? I would have been in the shower or pounding my head against a wall.
metswalkoffs said…
c. 1970...

I'm stumped. Need more clues. I looked up all the 5-4 extra-inning walk-off wins from the early 70s and there was nary a grand slam.

Any other recollections?
metswalkoffs said…
my guess is that's the game linked here
Anonymous said…
Hi. can't hit the link. The Mets got off to a fast start. I believe it was a grand slam, and it was 4-0 after 1 (vs. L.A.?) Slowly, the lead shrank. I do recall the opponents threw at least 9 or 10 no-hit innings until the Mets pulled the long day game off inti the W column. It had to be between 1972-1974, I think--I was in my early teens, just allowed to go to Shea with my friends alone. Thanks, tho, for trying to bring back a good memory...
Anonymous said…
From 1970 through 1976, there is no Mets game vs. the Dodgers at Shea remotely resembling this game. You can go to, go under franchises and click 'mets' and then go to the six games a year the Mets played vs. the Dodgers at Shea.
C'mon, 1970. You're killing us. Wrong team. Maybe no slam. You sure you were at a Mets game?
-- Barry Federovitch

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