July 17, 1966: Mets Complete DH Sweep of Astros

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Date: July 17, 1966
Mets starter: Bob Friend
Mets: 7
Astros: 5
Winning pitcher: Bob Friend
Key player(s): Ed Kranepool, Bob Friend, Ron Swoboda
Key play: Kranepool’s home run, Friend’s RBI ground out, Swoboda’s double

The Mets faced the Astros in a doubleheader on a Sunday afternoon. After winning the opener of the twinbill at Shea Stadium, the Mets aimed for a sweep in the nightcap. Bob Friend pitched a complete game in a 7-5 Mets victory over Houston.

Friend and the Astros’ Dave Giusti each pitched a perfect first inning. With one out in the top of the second, Lee Maye doubled and advanced to third base on a single by Bill Heath. Chuck Harrison drew a walk to load the bases and Bob Aspromonte fouled out to first baseman Ed Kranepool. Friend struck out Giusti to end the inning and Larry Elliot walked to lead off the bottom half. Ron Swoboda lined out to center fielder Jim Wynn and a single by Ed Bressoud moved Elliot to third. Jerry Grote singled to score Elliot for a 1-0 Mets lead. Bressoud went to third on Roy McMillan’s fly out to right fielder Rusty Staub. Giusti then fanned Friend for the inning’s final out.

Sonny Jackson got a bunt single with one out in the top of the third. Jackson stole second base and scored the tying run on a double by Staub. Felix Mantilla followed with a home run for a 3-1 Houston lead. Maye singled and Heath hit a ground ball to Kranepool for an inning-ending double play. Al Luplow hit a one-out double in the bottom half. Kranepool homered to retie the game and Elliot flied out to Staub. Giusti then retired Swoboda on a line drive to Wynn that closed out the inning.

Friend shut down the Astros in the top of the fourth. Bressoud drew a walk to open the bottom half. Grote went down on strikes and McMillan singled to advance Bressoud to third base. Houston reliever Barry Latman got Friend on a grounder to shortstop Jackson that plated Bressoud for a 4-3 Mets lead. Chuck Hiller was hit by a pitch and Luplow flied out to Wynn to finish off the inning. Friend then retired the side in order in the top of the fifth.

Kranepool doubled to begin the bottom of the fifth inning. Elliot reached second base on Latman’s error that allowed Kranepool to come home. Swoboda’s sacrifice bunt moved Elliot to third and Bressoud drew a walk. Latman fanned both Grote and McMillan for the inning’s final outs and Friend set down all three Astros batters in the top of the sixth. Latman then held the Mets to a single by Hiller in the bottom half.

Latman singled with one out in the top of the seventh. Wynn hit a single and Jackson flied out to center fielder Luplow. Staub reached on an error by Kranepool that allowed Latman to score and Wynn to go to third base. Mantilla grounded out to Kranepool to end the inning and a single by Elliot began the bottom half. Swoboda doubled to drive home Elliot with the Mets’ sixth run of the game. Trying to advance on his own hit, Swoboda was out via a relay throw from Jackson to third baseman Aspromonte. Bressoud fouled out to catcher Heath and a bunt single by Grote ensued. With McMillan at bat, Grote was caught stealing on Heath’s throw to second baseman Mantilla for the third out of the inning.

Friend retired the Astros 1-2-3 in the top of the eighth. To open the bottom half, McMillan singled and moved to second base on Friend’s sacrifice bunt. Hiller hit a double to score McMillan and increase the Mets’ lead to 7-4. Luplow was struck out and Kranepool was given an intentional walk. Billy Murphy followed with a single on which Hiller tried to score. Chuck was out at home on Latman’s throw to Heath to end the inning.

Wynn got a two-out single in the top of the ninth. Jackson reached on Kranepool’s second error of the game. On the play, third baseman Bressoud made an error that allowed Wynn to score the fifth Houston run. Friend then retired Staub on a pop-up to shortstop McMillan for the game’s final out. The Mets had a sweep of the doubleheader.