April 15, 1968: Mets Lose in 24 Innings

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Date: April 15, 1968
Mets starter: Tom Seaver
Mets: 0
Astros: 1
Winning pitcher: Wade Blasingame
Key player(s): Tom Seaver, Norm Miller, Bob Aspromonte
Key play: Weis's error in 24th

The Mets and Astros had an early season game on a Monday night at the Astrodome. A pitching matchup of aces Tom Seaver and Don Wilson started a night that lasted into the wee hours of the morning. At game's end, the Mets had a 1-0 defeat in 24 innings.

Seaver and Wilson were involved in a tough pitchers duel. Tom was terrific with ten shutout innings, allowing only two hits and no walks. Wilson was just as effective, shutting out the Mets on five hits through nine innings.

In the second inning, Houston's Hal King hit a double off Seaver. After reaching third base on a wild pitch, King was thrown out at home by Ken Boswell on a ground ball by Bob Aspromonte. Seaver then retired the next 24 Astro batters before Rusty Staub singled in the tenth.

The first quality scoring chances in extra innings came in the twelfth. For the Mets, singles by Jerry Grote, Al Weis and Ken Boswell loaded the bases against Houston pitcher Danny Coombs. Tommie Agee then grounded out to end the inning. The Astros had two runners on base with one out in the bottom half, but Mets' reliever Bill Short stopped the threat.

Houston had another opportunity in the 13th inning, placing runners on first and second with one out. Once again, a Mets' reliever pitched through it successfully as Dick Selma got two big outs.

Both teams had other opportunities to score. In the 17th and 19th innings, the Mets got runners as far as third base, but failed to bring them home. In the 22nd, the Astros had runners on first and third when Les Rohr came through with an inning-ending strikeout of Julio Gotay.

Rohr was still on the mound for the Mets in the 24th inning. Les issued a leadoff walk to Norm Miller and then balked, moving him to second. Eventually, the bases were loaded with one out when Aspromonte hit a ground ball to shortstop. Weis mishandled the ball for an error that allowed Miller to cross the plate with the winning run for the Astros.

Notes

  • Agee and Ron Swoboda both went hitless in ten at-bats, dropping their season batting averages dramatically. Agee's average fell from .313 to .192 while Swoboda saw his average go from .385 to .217 in only one day.