June 13, 1975: Stone Returns with Win Over Padres

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Date: June 13, 1975
Mets starter: George Stone
Mets: 7
Padres: 2
Winning pitcher: George Stone
Key player(s): George Stone, Del Unser, Mike Phillips, Rusty Staub
Key play: Unser’s double, Phillips’ triple, Staub’s single

The Mets faced the Padres on a Friday night in San Diego. Coming off of a shoulder injury, starting pitcher George Stone made his first appearance of the season. Stone recorded his first win in more than a year (and got two singles) in a 7-2 Mets victory.

Padres’ starter Joe McIntosh shut down the Mets in the top of the first inning. In the bottom half, Johnny Grubb led off with a double to left field. Enzo Hernandez grounded out to second baseman Felix Millan to advance Grubb to third base. Bobby Tolan was retired on a grounder to shortstop Mike Phillips and a single by Mike Ivie brought home Grubb for a 1-0 San Diego lead. Stone then got Fred Kendall to hit a ground ball to Phillips for an inning-ending force play.

John Milner opened the top of the second with a single to right field. Phillips flied out to center fielder Grubb and a single by Jerry Grote sent Milner to third. Stone hit a single that scored Milner and tied the game. Wayne Garrett singled to load the bases and Millan popped out to second baseman Tito Fuentes. Del Unser hit a double that plated Grote and Stone for a 3-1 Mets lead. Padres’ reliever Dave Tomlin came in to pitch and got Rusty Staub on an inning-ending ground ball to third baseman Ted Kubiak. Stone then pitched a perfect bottom half.

Stone and Tomlin each hurled scoreless ball in the third and fourth innings. Ed Kranepool singled with two outs in the top of the fifth. Milner hit a single and Phillips followed with a triple that drove home two runs. Grote grounded out to Fuentes to close out the inning and Stone shut down San Diego in the bottom half. Against Padres’ reliever Dan Spillner, the Mets loaded the bases with one out in the top of the sixth. Staub singled to right field to score Garrett and Millan, stretching the Mets’ lead to 7-1. Spillner then got Milner to ground out to first baseman Ivie and end the inning.

Stone set down all three San Diego batters in the bottom of the sixth. Spillner held the Mets to a single by Stone in the top of the seventh. George hurled a perfect bottom of the inning and Spillner shut down the Mets despite singles by Unser and Kranepool in the top of the eighth. Mets’ reliever Rick Baldwin retired the Padres 1-2-3 in the bottom half. Grote hit a one-out triple off San Diego’s Rich Folkers in the top of the ninth. Folkers then got Baldwin and Garrett on consecutive infield grounders for the final outs of the inning.

Grubb singled to begin the bottom of the ninth. Baldwin balked Grubb to second base and retired Hernandez on a fly ball to center fielder Unser. Tolan grounded out to Baldwin and a single by Ivie scored Grubb for the Padres’ second run. Baldwin then got Kendall to hit a grounder to first baseman Kranepool for the game’s final out. The Mets had a victory as Stone chalked up his first win since May 21 of the previous year.