April 17, 1966: Mets Win on Bases-Loaded Walk
|Date: April 17, 1966|
|Mets starter: Dick Selma|
|Winning pitcher: Larry Bearnarth|
|Key player(s): Ken Boyer, Johnny Lewis, Ron Swoboda|
|Key play: Boyer's double in 8th, Swoboda's walk in 9th|
The Mets concluded a season-opening series with the Braves on a Sunday afternoon. The crowd at Shea Stadium watched the home team come away with a win on a walk with the bases loaded in the ninth inning. The Mets defeated the newly-relocated Atlanta team, 5-4.
The Mets got a run against Braves' starter Tony Cloninger in the first inning. Johnny Lewis singled and came around to score on a double by Ken Boyer. In the third, Lewis came home on Ed Kranepool's single to give the Mets a 2-0 lead.
In the top of the fourth, the Braves tied the game on Lee Thomas's two-run homer off Mets' starter Dick Selma. Felipe Alou homered to put Atlanta ahead in the fifth. In the sixth, Hank Aaron doubled off Met reliever Gordon Richardson and came in to score on Richardson's two wild pitches for a 4-2 Braves lead.
Darrell Sutherland and Tug McGraw thwarted Atlanta with double play grounders in the sixth and seventh, respectively. In the eighth, Larry Bearnarth held the Braves scoreless despite a walk and two errors. The Mets then tied the game when Boyer doubled off reliever Phil Niekro to bring home Ron Hunt and Lewis in the bottom of the eighth.
In the ninth, Billy Murphy drew a one-out walk from Atlanta's Billy O'Dell. Bearnarth reached on an error and Ed Bressoud was walked intentionally to load the bases. Ron Swoboda, pinch-hitting for Al Luplow, walked to force home Murphy with the winning run. The Mets had a victory to give them a 2-1 record, the first time they ever went above the .500 mark at any point in a season.