A game-tying pinch inside-the-park home run was just one of the thrills fans at Shea Stadium witnessed in the Mets' 5-3, 10-inning win over the Angels on June 11, 2005. That feat was accomplished by Marlon Anderson with one out in the bottom of the ninth. Batting for Chris Woodward against future Met Francisco Rodriguez, Anderson hit a deep fly to right-center where Steve Finley not only couldn't quite catch it, but inadvertently kicked it away. Anderson flew around the bases and, in a bloody collision at home plate, beat Bengie Molina's tag.
After Braden Looper surrendered an unearned run in the top of the 10th, Cliff Floyd ended the game with a conventional home run in the bottom of the frame. Floyd slammed a two-out, 3-2 pitch from Brendan Donnelly over the right-center field fence—but not before teasing the fans by driving pitch number six of the nine-pitch at-bat just inches to the right of the right field foul pole.
The above heroics would not have been possible without the defensive gem turned in by Carlos Beltran. In the top of the seventh, with two outs and a man on first, Bengie Molina hit a deep fly to center that would have cleared the fence and put the Angels up 4-1, but Beltran leaped and snared the ball for out number three.
Other Game of Note
Exactly 20 years to the day before the game described above, the home run theatrics belonged to the Phillies' Von Hayes, who became the first major league player to hit two home runs in the first inning. He led off the bottom of the first with a solo shot off starter Tom Gorman and later in the same inning hit a grand slam off Calvin Schiraldi to put Philadelphia head 9-0. Amazingly, 24 more runs would be scored in the Mets' 26-7 loss, all without the benefit of another ball leaving the yard.
Believe it or not, it's the big 3-0 for Jose "Hozay-hozay-hozay, HO-o-zay, Ho-ZAY" Reyes. For the third time in his career, he will celebrate his birthday while on the disabled list. The four-time All-Star led the NL in triples four times and stolen bases three times, and is the Mets' all-time career leader in both departments, as well as holding the club record for most steals in a season. He is also 17th in slugging percentage among Mets with a minimum of 1,000 at-bats. He was robbed of a Gold Glove Award in 2007 and some would say (but not us) that he stole the NL batting championship in 2011—the first Met ever to lead the league in batting average.
Happy 84th birthday to slugging outfielder and original Met Frank Thomas. In the Amazins' inaugural season of 1962, he gave Mets fans something to brag about by leading New York City in homers with 34, one better than defending home run king Roger Maris of the Yankees. No Met would come close to that number until Dave Kingman beat it by two 13 years later. Thomas was also involved in one of the 1962 season's signature moments, the infamous "Yo la tengo!" incident. You can read about it in his autobiography, "Kiss It Goodbye: The Frank Thomas Story."
Amazin'-ly Tenuous Connection
Playwright and poet Ben Jonson was born on June 11, 1572. Among his many sage quotes, he once wrote: "O, for an engine, to keep back all clocks, or make the sun forget its motion!" Mets outfielder Ben Johnson probably wished there had been such a device that could have stopped time before he was demoted to Triple-A New Orleans on this very date in 2007.