This Date in Mets History: 7/18 - Grand Slams for Beltran and Piazza, Beastly Baby Born in Brooklyn

"The joke can only be explained by a picture of Joe Torre. But I'm not sure any exist. He dissolves camera lenses." - Jim Bouton, Ball Four.

On July 18, 2006, Carlos Beltran became the first and last Met to clout grand slams in consecutive games, just the 22nd player in history to be so selfish. With Carlos's clap of thunder the Mets triumphed in Cincinnati and grew 20 games better than .500. On July 18, 2000 -- another okay year -- Mike Piazza slammed his own salami to come out on top of an 11-7 firefight against the hosting Blue Jays, his third granny of the season. Chris Carpenter was the belly itcher who got nailed.

Finally, on July 18, 2001, an extremely rare bit of successful arguing from a manager (Bobby V) resulted in Fish skipper Tony Perez being thumbed from the game, following a bizarre play which left two Mets standing on third base. It was Perez's first ejection in 31 year and over 3,800 games as player, coach, and manager. "I might have said something like bull---," Perez copped.

Birthday

Joe Torre finished out his playing career with the 1975-77 Mets, batting to a 124 OPS+ in the 1976 campaign. In June 1977, he threw away bat and mitt to take over management of a club that was 15-29 with both Seaver and Kingman wanting out the door. And he largely failed to uncrash from the iceberg. Born in the Marine Park neighborhood of Brooklyn, the green-tea enthusiast plunged into long-term, shadowy obscurity after five losing season with the Mets, culminating in his 1981 firing. He has recently popped-up in an administrative role, glaring sternly at naughty umpires while Bud Selig secrets them bonbons and coos, "I love you just the way you are."

Notable Game

To stick with the grand-slam theme, Dave Gallagher swatted a pinch-hit, ninth-inning doozy on July 18, 1993, pouring it on at Candle Stick Park in San Francisco. The 29-62 Mets threw starting pitcher Pete Shourek against the first-place Giants, but it was lumber that crashed the ramparts. In addition to journeyman Gallagher's blast -- in his career, he managed just 17 homers in total across 9 seasons -- Eddie Murray knocked one out, and Jeff Kent knocked two out. The Mets doubled 'em, 12-6.

Amazin'-ly Tenuous Connection

On July 18, 1882, Irishman Tony Mullane, of the Louisville Eclipse, pitched three innings with his right arm then turned around to pitch six innings with his left, in a 9-8 loss in Baltimore. When the season concluded, the New York Metropolitans were invited to join the National League and partake in this wonderful form of the game. Malone, for his part, would retire in 1894 and spend two decades walking a police beat in the Windy City.
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