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Walk-Off Gee Whiz

I like the lead of the game story from the July 11, 1963 edition of the New York Times and it works perfectly for any 1-0 game in which a baserunner is doubled up to end things.

"Sometimes the Mets are tortured into defeat, but last night at the Polo Grounds, they were dispatched with one quick knife thrust."
-- Leonard Koppett on a 1-0 loss to the Dodgers, in a game played July 10, 1963

The manner in which that one ended was only slightly similar to Thursday's, but would have evoked the same kind of reaction.

Carlton Willey, not Mike Pelfrey, was the pitcher that day, and his work was stellar but for one blemish, a John Roseboro home run in the 8th, which put the anemic Mets offense (the team had lost 10 straight) behind.

Nonetheless, the home squad fought back gallantly in the 9th against Dodgers starter Johnny Podres.

With one on and one out, Frank Thomas mashed a drive to deep leftcenter, an estimated 400 feet away, which looked like it would be a game-winning home run. Alas, it was not meant to me at this stage for the infant ballclub, which debuted just a year prior. Future Met Tommy Davis made a leaping catch at the fence, and threw the ball back towards the infield, where Podres recovered and threw to first base for a game-ending double play. Pinch-runner Al Jackson had taken off blindly on contact, never thinking that the ball would be caught, and was nailed in his retreat.

It wasn't quite a line drive to first to double a guy off third, but it was the closest thing I could find to a defeat of matching score and matching frustration, with a limited amount of time available.

Grr...

The Truly Metstrated know...Tommy Davis would go on to hit a walk-off home run for the Mets, against the Reds on May 9, 1967.

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