May 31, 1964: The 23-inning Nightcap
|Date: May 31, 1964|
|Mets starter: Bill Wakefield|
|Winning pitcher: Gaylord Perry|
|Key player(s): Del Crandall, Roy McMillan|
|Key play: Mets' triple play in 14th, Crandall's double in 23rd|
After losing the first game of a doubleheader, the Mets were hoping for a split with the Giants. The second game went into extra innings and wasn't decided until 7 hours and 23 minutes after it began. Finally, a pair of runs in the 23rd inning gave San Francisco an 8-6 win.
The Giants scored twice in the first inning against Bill Wakefield. Harvey Kuenn opened with a walk and came around to score on Jesus Alou's double. Willie Mays followed with a single to bring home Jesus. The Mets got a run in the bottom of the second on Chris Cannizzaro's two-out single off Bobby Bolin that scored Jim Hickman.
In the third, Tom Haller and Chuck Hiller got run-scoring singles off reliever Craig Anderson. Jim Ray Hart then singled off Tom Sturdivant to score Haller. A single by Bolin then brought in Hiller to increase San Francisco's lead to 6-1.
The Mets got two runs back against Bolin in the bottom of the sixth. Ed Kranepool got a triple to score Joe Christopher and a single by Charley Smith brought home Kranepool. Roy McMillan and Frank Thomas then got two-out singles in the seventh before Christopher blasted a three-run homer to tie the game, 6-6. Bolin was then removed from the game.
Larry Bearnarth took the mound for the Mets in the eighth inning. Pitching into the extra innings, Bearnarth gave up a tenth inning triple to Haller and a double to Orlando Cepeda in the twelfth, but no runs. Meanwhile, San Francisco's Bob Shaw and Ron Herbel combined for five full innings of shutout ball before Gaylord Perry came in to pitch a scoreless thirteenth.
In the top of the fourteenth, Bearnarth started off by walking Jesus Alou. A single by Mays followed and Cepeda came up to the plate. With the runners moving on the pitch, Cepeda lined out to shortstop McMillan. Roy then stepped on second base for the second out and threw to Kranepool at first for a triple play. The inning was over and Bearnarth's stint was finished with seven shutout innings of relief.
Galen Cisco entered in the fifteenth and got into a relief pitcher's duel with Perry. Cisco allowed only two singles (both to Haller) over eight shutout innings, during which he retired 14 straight hitters and recorded five strikeouts. Perry matched scoreless innings with Cisco, bringing his total for the game to 10 while striking out nine batters. Cisco's and Perry's outstanding performances kept the game tied after 22 innings.
Jim Davenport came to bat against Cisco with two out in the top of the 23rd. Davenport hit a triple to right field and Cap Peterson was intentionally walked. Pinch-hitter Del Crandall then doubled to score Davenport, putting the Giants ahead, 7-6. Peterson then scored on Jesus Alou's single for another Giant run. San Francisco reliever Bob Hendley retired the Mets in order in the bottom of the 23rd, ending the game and bringing closure to nearly ten hours of baseball for the day.