June 17, 1976: Kingman's Homer in 14th Beats Dodgers

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Date: June 17, 1976
Mets starter: Craig Swan
Mets: 1
Dodgers: 0
Winning pitcher: Skip Lockwood
Key player(s): Dave Kingman, Craig Swan, Skip Lockwood
Key play: Kingman’s home run

The Mets faced the Dodgers on a Thursday night at Shea Stadium. The teams went into extra innings in the finale of a three-game series. In the 14th, Dave Kingman hit a home run to give the Mets a 1-0 win over Los Angeles.

Craig Swan and Dodgers’ starter Don Sutton each pitched shutout ball through nine full innings. Swan recorded eight strikeouts and walked none while yielding only three singles. The Mets collected six hits in being shut down by Sutton. In the fifth inning, the Mets had an opportunity to score with two runners on base and two outs. Swan singled, but left fielder Bill Buckner’s throw to catcher Steve Yeager got Del Unser at home for the inning’s final out. In the seventh, Leon Brown was at third with two outs when Sutton threw a called third strike past Jerry Grote to end the inning. At no other time did either team have a runner beyond second base.

Swan and Los Angeles reliever Mike Marshall each pitched a scoreless 10th inning. In the 11th, Skip Lockwood retired the Dodgers in order and Marshall shut down the Mets in the bottom half. Lockwood and the Dodgers’ Charlie Hough hurled scoreless and hitless 12th and 13th innings. Skip then recorded two strikeouts to finish a perfect top of the 14th.

Hough retired John Milner on a line drive to right fielder Joe Simpson to begin the bottom of the 14th inning. Kingman came to bat and homered to end the game. The Mets had an extra-inning victory to close out the series.