July 5, 1965: Swoboda Slugs Cubs in DH Opener

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Date: July 5, 1965
Mets starter: Warren Spahn
Mets: 3
Cubs: 2
Winning pitcher: Larry Bearnarth
Key player(s): Ron Swoboda, Larry Bearnarth
Key play: Swoboda’s home run

The Mets faced the Cubs in a doubleheader on a Monday afternoon at Shea Stadium. The teams played the first game of the twinbill in front of 35,900 fans on hand. Ron Swoboda homered for all the Mets’ runs in a 3-2 win over Chicago.

Mets’ starter Warren Spahn pitched a scoreless top of the first inning. Leading off the bottom half, Billy Cowan singled against the Cubs’ Dick Ellsworth. Roy McMillan hit a single and Joe Christopher followed with a force play ground ball to third baseman Ron Santo. Swoboda slugged a home run for a 3-0 Mets lead. Jim Hickman hit a single and advanced to second base on Ed Kranepool’s ground out to shortstop Don Kessinger. Ellsworth then retired Bobby Klaus on a line drive to Kessinger that ended the inning.

With one out in the top of the second, Jimmy Stewart drew a walk and moved to second base on Chris Krug’s single to center field. Kessinger followed with a single on which Stewart was out at home via a throw by left fielder Swoboda to catcher Chris Cannizzaro. Ellsworth grounded to second baseman Klaus to close out the inning and set down the Mets 1-2-3 in the bottom half. Spahn shut down the Cubs despite singles by Don Landrum and Santo in the top of the third. Ellsworth then hurled a perfect bottom of the inning.

Krug hit a solo home run with one out in the top of the fourth. Kessinger got an infield single and Ellsworth went down on strikes. Glenn Beckert drew a walk and Landrum singled to drive home Kessinger. A walk to Billy Williams loaded the bases and Spahn retired Santo on an inning-ending ground ball to shortstop McMillan. Ellsworth set down all three New York batters in the bottom half and Mets’ reliever Larry Bearnarth pitched a perfect top of the fifth. Ellsworth then retired the side in order for the fourth straight time in the bottom of the inning.

Bearnarth set down the Cubs 1-2-3 in the top of the sixth. Chicago reliever Lindy McDaniel pitched a perfect bottom half and Bearnarth retired the side in order once again in the top of the seventh. McDaniel set down all three Mets hitters in the bottom of the inning and Stewart got a one-out single in the top of the eighth. Pinch-hitter Ed Bailey followed with a line drive to second baseman Chuck Hiller for a double play to end the inning. McDaniel then chalked up the Cubs’ seventh consecutive perfect inning in the bottom half.

Pinch-hitter Doug Clemens grounded out to Hiller to lead off the top of the ninth. Bearnarth retired pinch-hitter Joey Amalfitano on a grounder to McMillan. Larry then got Beckert to fly out to right fielder Johnny Lewis and end the game. Despite failing to reach base in their last twenty-three plate appearances, the Mets had a victory to begin the doubleheader.