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Sunday, August 23, 2009

1969 magic returns - for the Phillies

Winning a game on an unassisted triple play by a backup infielder who had previously muffed two plays earlier in the inning is the sort of thing the 1969 Miracle Mets used to do on their way to the title. An unlikely hero saving the day in an unlikely way was their specialty.

On September 12, 1969, the Mets won both games of a doubleheader in Pittsburgh by a score of 1-0. In both games, the winning pitcher (Jerry Koosman in the first game, Don Cardwell in the second) drove in the only run. It was Koosman's only RBI the whole year.

On September 15, Steve Carlton set a record with 19 strikeouts in a nine-inning game, but lost because Ron Swoboda hit two two-run homers.

The same Swoboda, not known as a particularly good hitter or fielder, made a miraculous catch to save Game 4 of the World Series.

In Game 5 of the World Series, Al Weis, who hit two homers all year and only seven in his career, tied the game with a home run off Baltimore's Dave McNally, a 20-game winner that year.

If the Phillies win the World Series again this year, Eric Bruntlett's unassisted triple play will be a prominent highlight.

And to think this game began with Shane Victorino giving up on a ball that landed under the outfield wall padding because he thought it was out of play, allowing Angel Pagan to circle the bases for an inside-the-park homer.

Victorino's bonehead play suggested that the Mets had a little magic of their own, despite Very Bad Oliver Perez being unable to survive the top of the first.

Instead, all that we are left with are reports that Jeff Francoeur will be seeing a hand specialist Monday to see if he did any damage to his thumb on his diving catch. What a year.

Read what Lisa has to say about the state of the Mets on The Faster Times.

Photo by ShellyS.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

As a Met fan, it's really easy to hate this team, and be angry when watching them look like little leaguers so often. And then you see a play like today, where Frenchy makes a great catch and apparently gets hurt. I don't know if it's bad or not, yet another thing happens to make you scratch your head and just really feel sorry for these guys. Frenchy has been a bright spot with his play and attitude, and he may be hurt now too. After seeing that triple play, I'm almost aftraid to ask what could possibly happen to these guys next?

Michael in California

Anonymous said...

Two thoughts:

1. this season makes you wonder just how much bad luck can befall a team

2. why are the Mets coaches not working with Ollie to try to make him more consistent? It seems like he's either hot or cold, on or off, high or low, too many peaks and valleys. We need him to be more consistent.