October 14, 1973: Game Two of the World Series

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Date: October 14, 1973
Mets starter: Jerry Koosman
Mets: 10
Athletics: 7
Winning pitcher: Tug McGraw
Key player(s): Willie Mays, Mike Andrews
Key play: Mays's single, Athletics errors

The Mets and Athletics played the second game of the World Series on a Sunday afternoon in Oakland. The teams set a Series record with a game that lasted four hours and thirteen minutes. The Mets emerged with a 10-7 win in 12 innings to tie the Series at one game apiece.

Athletics’ starter Vida Blue retired the Mets in order in the top of the first inning. With one out in the bottom half, Joe Rudi doubled off the Mets’ Jerry Koosman. An ensuing triple by Sal Bando scored Rudi with the first run of the game. Koosman struck out Reggie Jackson and issued a walk to Gene Tenace. Jesus Alou hit a double to drive home Bando for a 2-0 Oakland lead. Koosman then walked Ray Fosse intentionally to load the bases and fanned Dick Green for the third out.

Cleon Jones hit a home run to lead off the top of the second inning. Blue set down the next three New York batters and went down on strike to lead off the bottom half. Bert Campaneris followed with a triple and scored the Athletics’ third run on an ensuing single by Rudi. With Bando at bat, Rudi was caught stealing on a throw by catcher Jerry Grote to second baseman Felix Millan. Koosman struck out Bando to end the inning. With two outs in the top of the third, Wayne Garrett homered to cut the Oakland lead to 3-2. Blue then got Millan on an inning-ending ground ball to third baseman Bando.

Tenace drew a walk with one out in the bottom of the third inning. Alou singled to right field and Fosse reached on an error by Koosman to load the bases. With Ray Sadecki on the mound for the Mets, Tenace was caught in a rundown on a failed squeeze attempt and tagged out. Green took a called third strike for the third out of the inning and Blue shut down the Mets in the top of the fourth. Sadecki then set down the Athletics 1-2-3 in the bottom half.

Blue and Mets’ reliever Harry Parker each hurled a scoreless fifth inning. With one out in the top of the sixth, Jones drew a walk and advanced to third base on a single by John Milner. Oakland reliever Horacio Pina hit Grote with a pitch to load the bases. Don Hahn and Bud Harrelson followed with back-to-back singles to score Jones and Milner, respectively, and give the Mets a 4-3 lead. Pinch-hitter Jim Beauchamp hit a grounder on which Athletics’ reliever Darold Knowles threw past catcher Fosse, allowing Grote and Hahn to score. Garrett was called out on strikes and Millan drew an intentional walk to reload the bases. Knowles retired Rusty Staub on a fly ball to Jackson to end the inning. Mets’ reliever Tug McGraw then pitched a perfect bottom half.

Knowles shut down the Mets in the top of the seventh. With one out in the bottom of the inning, Campaneris was hit by a pitch and Rudi drew a walk. Campaneris stole third base on a third strike to Bando and came home on an ensuing double by Jackson to reduce the Mets’ lead to 6-4. McGraw struck out Tenace to end the inning and Oakland’s John Odom pitched a perfect top of the eighth. Tug then set down all three Athletics batters on infield ground balls in the bottom half.

Odom held the Mets scoreless despite singles by Staub and Milner in the top of the ninth inning. Leading off the bottom half, pinch hitter Deron Johnson doubled to center field. McGraw struck out Campaneris and retired Rudi on a ground ball to third baseman Garrett. Bando drew a walk and a single by Jackson scored pinch-runner Allan Lewis. Tenace followed with a single to bring home Bando and tie the game. McGraw then retired Alou on a ground ball back to the mound to close out the inning and send the game onward.

Harrelson singled off Oakland reliever Rollie Fingers to begin the top of the 10th. Bud moved to second base on McGraw’s sacrifice bunt and advanced to third when Garrett reached on an error by first baseman Tenace. Millan flied out to left fielder Rudi after which Harrelson tried to score. Following Rudi’s throw to Fosse, Bud was called out by umpire Augie Donatelli to end the inning. The Mets argued intensely over the call, but to no avail. McGraw then retired the Athletics in order in the bottom half.

After a scoreless 11th inning, Harrelson doubled to open the top of the 12th. McGraw got a bunt single to send Harrelson to third base and Garrett went down on strikes. Fingers retired Millan on a pop-up to Tenace for the second out of the inning. Willie Mays followed with a single to score Harrelson and put the Mets ahead, 7-6. Jones singled to load the bases and Paul Lindblad came in to pitch for Oakland. Milner reached on an error by second baseman Mike Andrews that allowed McGraw and Mays to score. Grote followed with a grounder on which Andrews made an error that plated Jones with the Mets’ tenth run of the game. Lindblad then got Hahn on an inning-ending ground ball to Bando.

Jackson hit a triple to start the bottom of the 12th. McGraw issued a walk to Tenace and a single by Alou off Mets’ reliever George Stone brought home Jackson. Fosse hit into a force play grounder to shortstop Harrelson and a walk to Andrews loaded the bases. Pinch-hitter Vic Davalillo popped out to Millan. Stone then retired Campaneris on a ground ball to Harrelson to end the game. The Mets had a long-awaited victory to even the Series.

Notes

  • Following the game, Athletics' owner Charley Finley tried to replace Andrews on the team roster. Commissioner Bowie Kuhn disallowed the move and fined Finley.