August 10, 1976: Koosman Outduels Randy Jones

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Date: August 10, 1976
Mets starter: Jerry Koosman
Mets: 5
Padres: 4
Winning pitcher: Jerry Koosman
Key player(s): Jerry Koosman, John Milner
Key play: Koosman's single in 2nd, Milner's single in 8th

The Mets began a three-game series with the Padres on a Tuesday night at Shea Stadium. It was a matchup of Jerry Koosman and San Diego's Randy Jones, the National League's two top pitchers on the season. Both threw complete games, but it was Koosman who came out with the victory as the Mets defeated the Padres, 5-4.

The Mets got four runs in the second inning against Jones, the league's All-Star Game starter the previous month. Jerry Grote and Roy Staiger got back-to-back singles with one out and Leon Brown followed with a double to score Grote. Bud Harrelson was walked intentionally to load the bases and Koosman got a single to bring home Staiger and Brown. Jerry later scored on Felix Millan's two-out single.

In the third, the Padres came right back against Koosman. Fred Kendall led off with a walk and moved around to third on Jones' sacrifice bunt and Johnny Grubb's ground out. After Enzo Hernandez drew a walk, Willie Davis doubled to score Kendall. Dave Winfield then clubbed a three-run homer to tie the game, 4-4.

From the fourth inning to the seventh, Koosman and Jones pitched scoreless ball. Jerry allowed three San Diego hits while striking out five batters and Jones shut down the Mets on two hits. Koosman then pitched a scoreless top of the eighth despite two Padre singles.

Joe Torre led off the bottom of the eighth with a single. Grote followed with a sacrifice bunt to move pinch-runner Leo Foster to second base. John Milner, pinch-hitting for Brown, ripped a single to score Foster and put the Mets ahead. Jones then recorded outs on the next two hitters to end the inning.

In the ninth, Koosman shut down the Padres to finish off the game. The Mets had a win in the marquis pitching event. Koosman had outlasted the National League's All-Star Game winner.

Notes

  • Jones went on to win the National League Cy Young Award. Koosman finished second in the voting.