September 9, 1973: The 13-Hit Shutout

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Date: September 9, 1973
Mets starter: George Stone
Mets: 3
Expos: 0
Winning pitcher: George Stone
Key player(s): Tim Foli, Felix Millan, Tug McGraw
Key play: Foli’s error in 5th, Millan’s double in 7th

The Mets faced the Expos on a Sunday afternoon in Montreal. The teams concluded a four-game series at Jarry Park. Despite allowing hits in every inning for a game total of thirteen, George Stone and Tug McGraw combined to pitch a shutout in a 3-0 Mets win.

Stone and Montreal starter Balor Moore each hurled four scoreless innings to begin the game. The Expos had failed to plate a run on six singles while Felix Millan’s first-inning single was the Mets’ only hit against Moore. Leading off the top of the fifth, Jerry Grote reached on an error by second baseman Ron Hunt. Back-to-back singles by Don Hahn and Ted Martinez loaded the bases with none out. Stone followed with a ground ball on which shortstop Tim Foli threw to catcher Terry Humphrey for a force out at home on Grote. Bud Harrelson got to second base on Foli’s error that brought home Hahn and Martinez for a 2-0 Mets lead. Millan lined out to Foli and a walk to Willie Mays reloaded the bases. Moore retired Cleon Jones on an inning-ending fly ball to right fielder Ken Singleton. To start the bottom half, Hunt singled and moved to second on an error by shortstop Harrelson. Felipe Alou grounded out to Harrelson and a walk to Bob Bailey ensued. Stone then recorded outs on the next two Montreal batters to end the inning.

Moore shut down the Mets without a hit in the top of the sixth. Ron Woods opened the bottom of the inning with a bunt single. Foli hit a grounder to second baseman Millan for a double play and Humphrey grounded out to Harrelson. With one out in the top of the seventh, Bud singled to left field against Moore. Millan followed with a double to plate Harrelson for the Mets’ third run. Expos’ reliever Chuck Taylor struck out Mays and got Jones on a fly ball to left fielder Alou to close out the inning. Pepe Frias singled with one out in the bottom half. Alou flied out to left fielder Jones. Bailey popped out to Harrelson to end the inning. Montreal’s John Montague then made his major league debut by pitching a perfect top of the eighth.

Woods reached first on Harrelson’s error with two outs in the bottom of the eighth inning. Foli and Humphrey followed with the Expos’ tenth and eleventh singles off Stone to load the bases. McGraw came in to pitch for New York and retired pinch-hitter Mike Jorgensen on a ground ball to Millan for the third out of the inning. The Mets were then shut down by Expos’ reliever Mike Marshall in the top of the ninth.

Frias began the bottom of the ninth inning with the twelfth Montreal single of the game. Alou hit a double play grounder to third baseman Martinez. Bailey doubled for the Expos’ thirteenth hit (and first for extra bases) to keep the game alive. McGraw then struck out Hal Breeden to end it. The Mets had a strange series-closing shutout victory.

Notes

  • This was Mays’ final regular season game of his Hall of Fame career.