April 26, 1973: McAndrew and McGraw Five-Hit Astros

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Date: April 26, 1973
Mets starter: Jim McAndrew
Mets: 2
Astros: 1
Winning pitcher: Jim McAndrew
Key player(s): Jim McAndrew, Tug McGraw, Jim Beauchamp, Duffy Dyer
Key play: Beauchamp’s single, Dyer’s RBI force play grounder

The Mets faced the Astros on a Thursday night in Houston. The teams played the finale of a three-game series. Jim McAndrew and Tug McGraw combined on a five–hitter in a 2-1 Mets win.

Astros’ starter Jerry Reuss pitched a perfect top of the first inning. McAndrew set down all three batters in the bottom half and Reuss gave up only a single to George Theodore in the top of the second. Bob Watson singled to lead off the bottom of the inning. Jim Wynn followed with a force play ground ball to third baseman Jim Fregosi. Doug Rader grounded to Fregosi for an inning-ending double play and Reuss surrendered just a walk to McAndrew in the top of the third. Jim then struck out the side in order in the bottom half.

Reuss shut down the Mets in the top of the fourth. Tommy Helms singled with one out in the bottom of the inning. Cesar Cedeno hit a double and Watson was walked intentionally to load the bases. Wynn grounded to second baseman Felix Millan for a double play that ended the inning and Duffy Dyer drew a one-out walk in the top of the fifth. McAndrew walked and Bud Harrelson flied out to left fielder Tommie Agee. Millan was retired on a pop-up to second baseman Helms for the inning’s third out and Rader slugged a home run to begin the bottom half. McAndrew then retired the next three Houston hitters to finish off the inning.

Willie Mays drew a walk to open the top of the sixth. Mays advanced to third base on Rusty Staub’s single and came home on a single by Jim Beauchamp to tie the game at 1-1. Theodore reached on first baseman Watson’s error to load the bases and Fregosi was struck out. Dyer followed with a force play ground ball to shortstop Roger Metzger to drive home Staub and give the Mets a one-run lead. Reuss got McAndrew to hit a force play grounder to Metzger and close out the inning. Jim then hurled a perfect bottom half.

Reuss retired the side 1-2-3 in the top of the seventh. McAndrew did the same in the bottom of the inning and Reuss pitched a perfect top of the eighth. McGraw set down the Astros in order in the bottom half and Houston reliever Jim York hurled a scoreless top of the ninth. Agee singled for the Astros’ fifth hit to lead off the bottom of the inning. Helms flied out to left fielder Ted Martinez and a called third strike was thrown past Cedeno. McGraw then got Watson to ground out to shortstop Harrelson and bring the game to an end. The Mets had a series-closing victory.