June 17, 1966: Hunt's Double Overtakes Reds

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Date: June 17, 1966
Mets starter: Bob Shaw
Mets: 6
Reds: 5
Winning pitcher: Bob Shaw
Key player(s): Ed Bressoud, Ken Boyer, Ron Hunt
Key play: Bressoud’s home run, Boyer’s home run, Hunt’s double

The Mets faced the Reds in a doubleheader on a Friday evening. The teams began the twinbill with a two-hour and 29-minute opener at Crosley Field. Ron Hunt hit a two-run double in the eighth inning to give the Mets a 6-5 win over Cincinnati.

Reds’ starter Joe Nuxhall pitched a perfect top of the first inning. Tommy Harper singled against the Mets’ Bob Shaw to lead off the bottom half. Pete Rose hit a single to send Harper to third base and moved to second on a throw. Vada Pinson flied out to left fielder Ron Swoboda and a single by Gordy Coleman drove home Harper and Rose. Trying to advance on his own hit, Coleman was caught by a relay throw from third baseman Ken Boyer to shortstop Ed Bressoud for the second out. Shaw then got Art Shamsky to ground out to first baseman Ed Kranepool and end the inning.

After scoreless second and third innings, Nuxhall held the Mets to a single by Swoboda in the top of the fourth. Pinson singled to begin the bottom half. With Coleman at the plate, Pinson stole second base and went to third on a wild pitch. Coleman followed with a single to score Pinson and extend the Cincinnati lead to 3-0. Shamsky and Leo Cardenas were retired on consecutive fly balls to Swoboda. Shaw then got Chico Ruiz on a grounder to Bressoud for the inning’s final out.

Jerry Grote hit a double to open the top of the fifth. Nuxhall set down the next two batters and issued a walk to Swoboda. Bressoud slugged a three-run homer to tie the game and Cleon Jones grounded out to third baseman Ruiz to finish off the inning. To begin the bottom half, Johnny Edwards singled to right field. Nuxhall was struck out and Harper hit a single on which Edwards went to third base. Rose singled to score Edwards and walk to Pinson loaded the bases. Coleman hit a force play ground ball to Boyer that drove home Harper for a 5-3 Reds lead. Shaw then threw a called third strike past Shamsky to close out the inning.

Boyer hit a home run to lead off the top of the sixth. Swoboda grounded out to shortstop Cardenas and a single by Billy Murphy ensued. Grote popped out to second baseman Rose and fly ball by Kranepool was caught by center fielder Pinson to end the inning. Shaw hurled a perfect bottom half and Cincinnati reliever Don Nottebart set down the first two batters in the top of the seventh. Bressoud drew a walk and Jones singled to center field. Boyer followed with an infield single to load the bases. Nottebart got Swoboda to hit an inning-ending force play grounder to Cardenas. Shaw then shut down the Reds in the bottom half.

Pinch-hitter Al Luplow singled to begin the top of the eighth inning. A pinch-hit single by Chuck Hiller advanced pinch-runner Johnny Lewis to second base and Nottebart was replaced on the mound by Cincinnati’s Bill McCool. Pinch-hitter Roy McMillan sacrificed the runners to second and third and McCool fanned pinch-hitter Hawk Taylor. Hunt came to bat and delivered a double that scored Lewis and Hiller, putting the Mets ahead by a run. McCool struck out Bressoud to bring the inning to an end. Mets’ reliever Jack Hamilton then retired the side in order in the bottom half.

McCool set down the Mets 1-2-3 in the top of the ninth. Edwards flied out to left fielder Lewis to start the bottom of the inning. Pinch-hitter Tony Perez flied out to right fielder Swoboda (who had shifted from left.) Hamilton then got Harper to ground out to Boyer and end the game. The Mets had begun the doubleheader with a comeback victory.