August 7, 1971: Mets Score 20 Runs
|Date: August 7, 1971|
|Mets starter: Nolan Ryan|
|Winning pitcher: Nolan Ryan|
|Key player(s): Ken Boswell, Jerry Grote, Nolan Ryan|
|Key play: Boswell's grand slam|
The Mets had Nolan Ryan on the mound to face the Braves in Atlanta. Ryan got more run support than any Met pitcher had ever received before. The Mets' hitters put on a big show with 21 hits (18 of them singles) and came away with a 20-6 victory.
The Mets' offensive barrage started early. They scored ten runs in the first two innings against Atlanta pitchers Ron Reed and Mike McQueen. Cleon Jones got a run-scoring single in each inning and Ken Boswell drove in five runs with a double and a grand slam.
Ahead 10-1 in the fifth inning, the Mets resumed their onslaught. McQueen retired the first two batters, but then allowed singles to Jerry Grote and Ryan. Bud Harrelson walked to load the bases and Wayne Garrett got another single on which Grote and Ryan scored. Steve Barber relieved McQueen to face Tommie Agee, who singled home Harrelson for another run.
The Braves "narrowed" the gap to eight in the bottom of the fifth. Earl Williams singled to score Hank Aaron. Sonny Jackson then walked and Zoilo Versalles hit a three-run homer. The Mets responded in the sixth on Grote's single (his third of the game) to score Boswell and a two-run single by Tim Foli that brought home Ken Singleton and Grote. It was a 16-5 Mets lead.
After the Braves scored a run in the bottom of the sixth, the Mets continued to pour it on in the seventh. With one out, Dave Marshall singled and Donn Clendenon hit a two-run homer to make the score 18-6. An inning later, Ryan got his second single of the game for the Mets' 20th hit.
In the ninth, the Mets loaded the bases with two out against Atlanta reliever Bob Priddy. Grote hit a grounder to third base that got by Versalles for an error. Clendenon and Boswell came in to score and bring the Mets to the 20-run mark. Ron Taylor relieved Ryan in the bottom of the inning and retired the Braves on three fly balls to end the game.