July 2, 1976: Koosman Three-Hits Cubs
|Date: July 2, 1976|
|Mets starter: Jerry Koosman|
|Winning pitcher: Jerry Koosman|
|Key player(s): Jerry Koosman, Ron Hodges|
|Key play: Hodges’ single|
The Mets faced the Cubs on a Friday night at Shea Stadium. The teams played the opener of a four-game holiday weekend series. After pitching one-hit ball for eight and two-thirds innings, Jerry Koosman ended up with a three-hit complete game in a 2-1 Mets win over Chicago.
Jose Cardenal drew a walk with one out in the top of the first. Bill Madlock flied out to right fielder Dave Kingman and a single by Jerry Morales advanced Cardenal to third base. Cardenal came home on catcher Ron Hodges’ passed ball and Koosman struck out Manny Trillo to end the inning. To begin the bottom half, Mike Phillips singled against Cubs’ starter Steve Stone. Felix Millan reached second base on right fielder Morales’s error that allowed Phillips to score and tie the game at 1-1. John Milner walked and Kingman went down on strikes. Ed Kranepool hit a single on which Millan was out at home via a throw by Morales to catcher Steve Swisher. Stone then retired Bruce Boisclair on a ground ball to second baseman Trillo for the inning’s third out.
Koosman set down all nine Chicago batters from the second inning to the fourth. Stone responded with a trio of scoreless bottom halves and Jerry retired the side in order once again in the top of the fifth. Koosman singled against Cubs’ reliever Oscar Zamora to lead off the bottom half. Phillips flied out to left fielder Cardenal and a single by Millan ensued. Milner got a single against Chicago’s Buddy Schultz to load the bases. Joe Coleman came in to pitch for the Cubs and fanned Kingman. Coleman then got Kranepool to hit a force play grounder to shortstop Mick Kelleher that closed out the inning.
Koosman hurled a perfect top of the sixth. To open the bottom half, Boisclair singled and stole second base. Wayne Garrett grounded out to first baseman Pete LaCock to send Boisclair to third. Hodges hit a single to drive home Boisclair and put the Mets ahead by a run. Koosman’s sacrifice bunt moved Hodges to second. Coleman then struck out Phillips to finish off the inning.
Madlock got hit by a pitch leading off the top of the seventh. Morales was retired on a foul pop-up to shortstop Phillips. Trillo flied out to Kingman and a strikeout of Swisher ended the inning. Coleman retired the side 1-2-3 in the bottom half and Koosman set down the Cubs in order in the top of the eighth. Chicago reliever Darlod Knowles then hurled a scoreless bottom half.
Koosman struck out Rick Monday to begin the top of the ninth. Cardenal was retired on a ground ball to Phillips. With Jerry only an out away from a one-hitter, Madlock singled to center field. Morales followed with a single for the third Chicago hit. Koosman then got Trillo on a foul pop-up to first baseman Kranepool for the game’s final out. The Mets had a victory to start the series.