April 28, 1972: Matlack's First Win as a Starter

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Date: April 28, 1972
Mets starter: Jon Matlack
Mets: 6
Dodgers: 1
Winning pitcher: Jon Matlack
Key player(s): Jon Matlack, Ken Boswell, Tommie Agee
Key play: Boswell’s single, Agee’s grand slam

The Mets faced the Dodgers on a Friday night in Los Angeles. The teams played the opener of a three-game series. Jon Matlack recorded his second major league win (and first as a starting pitcher) in a 6-1 Mets victory.

Following a scoreless first inning, Cleon Jones singled with one out in the top of the second. Jones advanced to third base on Jim Fregosi’s single and came home on a single by Ed Kranepool. Dodgers’ starter Bill Singer struck out both Jerry Grote and Matlack to end the inning and Steve Garvey got a two-out single in the bottom half. Dick Dietz singled and a single by Bill Russell scored Garvey to tie the game. Matlack then fanned Singer for the inning’s final out.

Singer and Matlack each pitched scoreless ball from the third inning to the seventh. Grote singled with one out in the top of the eighth. Matlack reached on a fielder’s choice bunt and Bud Harrelson hit a single to load the bases. Ken Boswell singled to score Grote and give the Mets a 2-1 lead. Singer was replaced on the mound by Los Angeles reliever Jim Brewer, against whom Tommie Agee hit a grand slam. Brewer got Rusty Staub to ground out to second baseman Jim Lefebvre and retired Jones on an inning-ending fly ball to center fielder Willie Davis. Matlack then held the Dodgers to a single by Wes Parker in the bottom half.

Brewer yielded only a single to Grote in the top of the ninth. Lefebvre flied out to center fielder Agee to lead off the bottom of the inning. Garvey was retired on a ground ball to shortstop Harrelson. Matlack then got Dietz to ground out to third baseman Fregosi and end the game. The Mets had triumphed on Jon’s first win as a starter to open the weekend series.