June 10, 1972: Four-Run 4th Lifts Mets Over Astros

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Date: June 10, 1972
Mets starter: Jerry Koosman
Mets: 5
Astros: 3
Winning pitcher: Jerry Koosman
Key player(s): Jerry Koosman, Duffy Dyer, Wayne Garrett
Key play: Dyer’s double, Koosman’s single, Garrett’s single

The Mets faced the Astros on a Saturday afternoon at Shea Stadium. The teams played in front of 54,198 fans on hand. Four runs in the fourth inning propelled the Mets to a 5-3 win over Houston.

Mets’ starter Jerry Koosman pitched a perfect top of the first. For the Astros, Don Wilson hurled a scoreless bottom half and Koosman retired the side in order again in the top of the second. John Milner drew a walk with one out in the bottom of the inning. Cleon Jones went down on strikes and a walk to Wayne Garrett followed. Duffy Dyer hit a double to drive home Milner for a 1-0 Mets lead. Wilson then got Koosman on a ground ball to third baseman Doug Rader for the inning’s final out.

Larry Howard hit a leadoff single in the top of the third. Bobby Fenwick was struck out and a sacrifice bunt by Wilson advanced Howard to second base. Roger Metzger drew a walk and Cesar Cedeno grounded out to shortstop Bud Harrelson to end the inning. Wilson set down the Mets in order in the bottom half. Koosman then retired all three Houston batters in the top of the fourth.

Rusty Staub singled to begin the bottom of the fourth inning. Milner hit a single to send Staub to third base and Jones popped out to Rader. Garrett singled to score Staub and a walk to Dyer loaded the bases. Koosman hit a single to plate Milner and a sacrifice fly by Harrelson brought home Garrett as Dyer moved to third. With Ken Boswell at bat, Duffy scored the Mets’ fourth run of the inning on Wilson’s errant pickoff throw for a 5-0 New York lead. Wilson issued a walk to Boswell and was removed from the game. Astros’ reliever Tom Griffin then struck out Tommie Agee to finish off the inning.

Rader hit a home run to lead off the top of the fifth. Koosman retired the next three Houston hitters and Griffin hurled a perfect bottom half. With one out in the top of the sixth, Cedeno homered to cut the Mets’ lead to 5-2. Jimmy Wynn hit a single and Lee May flied out to right fielder Staub. Bob Watson was retired on a fly ball to center fielder Agee that ended the inning and Griffin struck out the side in order in the bottom half. Mets’ reliever Buzz Capra set down the Astros 1-2-3 in the top of the seventh and Harrelson opened the bottom half with a triple to left field. Griffin then fanned the next three Mets batters to close out the inning.

Pinch-hitter Norm Miller drew a walk to begin the top of the eighth. Metzger flied out to left fielder Milner and a strikeout of Cedeno ensued. Wynn and May drew back-to-back walks to load the bases and Watson walked to force home Miller with the third Houston run. Danny Frisella came in to pitch for the Mets and got Rader on an inning-ending line drive to Milner. Astros’ reliever Joe Gibbon then pitched a perfect bottom half.

Johnny Edwards went down on strikes to begin the top of the ninth inning. Jimmy Stewart was retired on a ground ball back to Frisella. Danny then got pinch-hitter Bob Stinson to ground out to second baseman Boswell and end the game. The Mets had a victory to stop a three-game losing streak.