October 21, 1973: Game Seven of the World Series

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Date: October 21, 1973
Mets starter: Jon Matlack
Mets: 2
Athletics: 5
Winning pitcher: Ken Holtzman
Key player(s): Ken Holtzman, Reggie Jackson
Key play: Campaneris's & Jackson's home runs

The Mets and Athletics played the seventh game of the World Series on a Sunday afternoon in Oakland. The Series concluded with a two-hour and thirty-seven minute game. The Athletics defeated the Mets, 5-2, to claim their second consecutive World Championship.

Jon Matlack and Oakland’s Ken Holtzman each pitched scoreless and hitless ball in the first and second innings. Don Hahn singled to open the top of the third. Bud Harrelson flied out to left fielder Joe Rudi and a bunt by Matlack was fielded by third baseman Sal Bando for an inning-ending double play. Holtzman doubled with one out in the bottom half. Bert Campaneris followed with a home run to give the Athletics a two-run lead. Rudi hit a single and Bando popped out to second baseman Felix Millan. A home run by Reggie Jackson extended the Oakland lead to 4-0. Harry Parker replaced Matlack on the mound and issued a walk to Gene Tenace. Parker then got pinch-hitter Vic Davalillo on an inning-ending fly ball to center fielder Hahn.

Holtzman and Parker each hurled a scoreless fourth inning. In the top of the fifth, Holtzman shut down the Mets after a leadoff single by Jerry Grote. Campaneris singled off Mets’ reliever Ray Sadecki to begin the bottom half. An error by left fielder Cleon Jones allowed Campaneris to advance to second base on the hit. Rudi singled to score Campaneris with the Athletics’ fifth run of the game. Bando lined out to right fielder Rusty Staub and a foul pop-up by Jackson was caught by third baseman Wayne Garrett. Sadecki then retired Tenace on a pop-up to shortstop Harrelson to end the inning.

Millan got a one-out double in the top of the sixth. Staub doubled to score Millan with the first New York run. Oakland reliever Rollie Fingers got Jones to fly out to right fielder Jackson and retired John Milner on an inning-ending ground ball to first baseman Deron Johnson. Sadecki set down the Athletics 1-2-3 in the bottom half. Hahn got a one-out single in the top of the seventh. Harrelson flied out to center fielder Davalillo and a pinch-hit single by Ken Boswell ensued. Fingers threw a called third strike past Garrett for the third out. Mets’ reliever George Stone gave up singles to Fingers and Campaneris to start the bottom half. Stone then fanned the next three Oakland batters to close out the inning.

Fingers and Stone each pitched a scoreless eighth. Milner drew a walk to lead off the top of the ninth. Grote flied out to Rudi and a single by Hahn followed. Harrelson was retired on a ground ball back to Fingers for the second out of the inning. Pinch-hitter Ed Kranepool reached on an error by first baseman Tenace that allowed Milner to score. Athletics’ reliever Darold Knowles then retired Garrett on a game-ending pop-up to shortstop Campaneris. The Mets’ quest for a title had fallen one game short.

Notes

  • Despite the loss, the Mets outscored the Athletics, 24 to 21, in the Series. They also had 66 hits while Oakland had 51.