July 31 isn't just the trade deadline. It's the anniversary of one of the greatest pitching duels in "recent" Mets history. Go figure that a matchup of Paul Wilson and Denny Neagle would produce such a contest, but it did. This was 1996 and the Mets were quasi-buyers instead of the sellers they'd been the previous year, when they dealt Bret Saberhagen and Bobby Bonilla at the trade deadline. Many say that Wilson's best game as a Met was the one in which he lost on a Sammy Sosa walk-off home run. "But he was never the same after that," John Franco noted on WFAN the other day. He did have one or two nice moments though. Wilson allowed only one hit, a sixth-inning double by Al Martin, over eight innings, striking out seven and walking three. Wilson left a bit chagrined, trailing 1-0 into the bottom of the 9th. Neagle had struck out 12 through the first eight innings, but Bernard Gilkey (who whiffed three times) negated that work with a game-tying
A blog devoted to cataloguing New York Mets walk-offs and other trivia. For those unaware of the definition of walk-off just replace the term with the words "game-ending" and you should have a much better understanding of the phrase.