August 30, 1968: Seaver and Shamsky Shuffle Cards

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Date: August 30, 1968
Mets starter: Tom Seaver
Mets: 8
Cardinals: 2
Winning pitcher: Tom Seaver
Key player(s): Tom Seaver, Bud Harrelson, Art Shamsky, Jerry Grote
Key play: Harrelson’s two-run single, Shamsky’s grand slam

The Mets faced the Cardinals on a Friday night at Shea Stadium. The teams played the opener of a three-game weekend series. Tom Seaver pitched a three-hitter and Art Shamsky hit a grand slam in an 8-2 Mets win over St. Louis.

Seaver retired the side in order in the top of the first inning. Cards’ starter Nelson Briles hurled a perfect bottom half and Tom set down all three Redbird hitters in the top of the second. Ron Swoboda drew a walk with two outs in the bottom of the inning. Jerry Grote followed with a single on which third baseman Mike Shannon made an error that allowed Swoboda to score for a one-run Mets lead. Briles then got Jerry Buchek to ground out to Shannon and end the inning.

Seaver struck out the side in order in the top of the third. Briles gave up just a single to Bud Harrelson in the bottom half and Tom retired the Cardinals 1-2-3 in the top of the fourth. Briles pitched a perfect bottom of the inning and the Redbirds went down in succession once again in the top of the fifth. Grote singled to lead off the bottom half. Buchek reached on right fielder Roger Maris’s error and Seaver got on base via an error by Briles. Harrelson hit a single to drive home Grote and Buchek for a 3-0 Mets lead. Ken Boswell’s sacrifice bunt moved the runners to second and third before and intentional walk to Larry Stahl loaded the bases. Shamsky slugged a grand slam to increase the Mets’ lead to seven runs. Ed Kranepool grounded out to second baseman Julian Javier. Briles then threw a called third strike past Swoboda for the inning’s final out.

Seaver retired the Cards in order yet again in the top of the sixth. Grote doubled against St. Louis reliever Mel Nelson to begin the bottom half. Jerry advanced to third base on Buchek’s ground out to shortstop Dick Schofield and scored the Mets’ eighth run on a single by Seaver. Nelson retired Harrelson on a fly ball to Maris and got Boswell to hit an inning-ending ground ball to Schofield. Seaver pitched a perfect top of the seventh. Nelson then set down all three Mets batters in the bottom half.

Leading off the top of the eighth inning, Orlando Cepeda doubled for the Cardinals’ first hit (and baserunner) of the game. Tim McCarver went down on strikes and Shannon hit a double that scored Cepeda. Following a wild pitch, pinch-hitter Johnny Edwards singled to bring home Shannon from third base with the Redbirds’ second run. Seaver retired pinch-hitter Bobby Tolan on a grounder to shortstop Harrelson to close out the inning. Cards’ reliever Wayne Granger then hurled a perfect bottom half.

Shannon was retired on a fly ball to center fielder Tommie Agee to open the top of the ninth. Lou Brock singled for the third St. Louis hit of the game. Brock stole second base and Curt Flood was struck out. Seaver then retired Maris on a foul pop-up to catcher Grote to bring the game to an end. The Mets had a victory on Tom’s solid pitching and Shamsky’s slam.