June 25, 1976: Phillips Hits for the Cycle

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Date: June 25, 1976
Mets starter: Jon Matlack
Mets: 7
Cubs: 4
Winning pitcher: Jon Matlack
Key player(s): Mike Phillips, Dave Kingman
Key play: Kingman’s homer in 3rd, Phillips’ homer in 7th, Phillips’ single in 8th

The Mets played the Cubs on a Friday afternoon at Wrigley Field. The game was highlighted by Mike Phillips’ hitting for the cycle to lead the Mets to a 7-4 win. Jon Matlack pitched a complete game for his ninth win of the season.

Things started out poorly for the Mets. Rick Monday hit a home run off Matlack to start the first inning, giving Chicago a 1-0 lead. Jon avoided further damage by getting a double play out of Jerry Morales to end the inning. He then retired the side in order in the second.

Phillips got a one-out double in the top of the third against Cubs’ starter Ray Burris. Mike was thrown out at third on Felix Millan’s grounder before John Milner singled. Dave Kingman then hit a three-run homer off Burris to put the Mets into the lead.

The Cubs tied the game with runs in the third and fourth innings. Bill Madlock singled to score Dave Rosello in the third and Ed Kranepool’s error of a ball hit by Burris allowed George Mitterwald to score in the fourth. Each run came with two outs in the inning.

The Mets went ahead, 4-3, in the top of the fifth. Phillips led off with a triple and scored when Milner’s ground ball was misplayed by second baseman Manny Trillo. The lead was extended another three runs in the seventh on Phillips’ two-run homer off Burris and Kingman’s RBI single off reliever Bruce Sutter.

The Cubs got a run in the bottom of the seventh on a two-out double by Jose Cardenal that scored Monday from first base. The Mets had two out in the eighth when Phillips singled off Chicago reliever Mike Garman for a completion of the cycle. He became the third Mets’ player ever to achieve such a feat.

Matlack retired the Cubs in order in both the eighth and ninth innings to end the game. The Mets had a victory with Jon’s solid pitching and a 14-hit attack. The day was further enhanced by Phillips’ special achievement.