On This Date, 1969, the Mets fell to third place, 9.5 games behind the division-leading Cubs. Today, the Mets are in third place, 9.5 games behind the division-leading Nats. Just sayin'.
This Date, 2005, inspired mild profanity from normally phlegmatic Eric Simon, in the course of calling out a "uniquely ridiculous" way to lose. Then again, a search of uniquely ridiculous pulls up 12 stories, three fanposts, and nine comments on AmazinAvenue.com. On August 14, 2005, Pedro Martinez carried a no-hit bid into the eighth inning of a game at Dodger Stadium. Could the fresh import accomplish what no broken-in Met ever had? The answer -- it was "no" -- cracked off the bat of Antonio Perez, who raced all the way to third and was a fly ball away from tying the game. Instead, Jayson Werth measured his pitch and carried it over the wall for the 2-1, 2-hit victory.
- If I opened my eyes to find myself suited up with a bat on my shoulder in a Major League stadium -- and I hit a triple -- I would happily retire. "You've seen what I got! It's cool!" This is something like the strange career of Eric Cammack (turns 37), who is one of four men in history to own a career slugging percentage of 3.000. The relief pitcher and member of the the 2000 Mets retired some 4,999 plate appearances below the all-time list threshold -- where he'd reign but for that quibbling rule. As no player has ever retired after homering in his only at bat, Cammack's was perhaps the greatest entrance-curtain-call in history.
Game of Note
Fonzie brought the party in an August 14, 1997 game in St. Louis. Bobby Jones and Donovan Osbourne were the pitchers, and they had wrangled to a low-scoring draw into the fifth inning. Singles from Pratt, Ray-Ray, and McRae loaded the bases for Alfonzo to attempt to his first career grand slam. Attempt successful. No. 13 gave Bobby Jones a career-high 14th win.
Amazin'-ly Tenuous Connection
On August 14, 2003, I was sitting in NYU's Bobst Library -- as I am right now -- when a massive power failure blacked out the east coast, rending the Village a midway of dollar beers and pizza parlors lit with headlights. I confess that, in my candle-burning wonderment and elation, the baseball game didn't occur to me. Nevertheless, the Mets-Giants game was -- miraculously -- the only game canceled across the Major Leagues.