40th anniversary: 13th inning inside-the-park walk-off home run

40 years ago today, the Cardinals topped the Mets in a memorable matter – with an extra innings walk-off, inside-the-park home run. Yeah, you don’t see too many of those.

Tom Seaver for the visitors and Bob Gibson for the home team. Neither pitcher was having their best season in 1972, but both were still terrific talents.

Despite the impressive marquee value on the mound, the game began as anything but a pitcher’s duel, as both squads pushed a run across the plate in the first inning. Bob Gibson surrendered a home run to Wayne Garrett, and Lou Brock made Seaver pay for a leadoff walk by stealing second and scoring on a Joe Torre single.

After that, the game settled down as the pitchers took control. In the second through eighth innings, the squads combined for just one more run. That came in the fourth when Tom Seaver lost his control and walked in a run.

Heading into the ninth, it looked like another Bob Gibson victory would be grinded out. However, in the top of the ninth, Gibson lost his stuff, surrendering back-to-back doubles to tie the score.

Gibson recovered to get the next two guys out. Well, he got one out, and the second one sacrificed himself. In a sign of how the game has changed, with one out and the potential winning run on second base, the Mets let pitcher Tom Seaver bat for himself so he could sacrifice the runner. Mind you, the runner was already in scoring position and this left the Mets with just one out to play with. And it nearly worked for them. Gibson walked the next two batters to load the bases, but got a fly out to end the inning.

On to the bottom of the ninth. There’s only one thing worth noting in this frame. The Mets began the inning with relief pitcher Tug McGraw taking the place of Tom Seaver. This makes it that much odder that Mets manager Yogi Berra would let Seaver bat just a few minutes earlier. Well, McGraw shut down the Cardinals and extra innings beckoned.

Gibson stayed in and for the 24th time in his career recorded the 28th out in a game. But he only lasted one more inning before the bullpen took over in the 11th. And the game kept going on. The only rally came in the top of the 12th with St. Louis reliever Diego Segui walked the first two batters, but then he picked one off and struck the next two out.

Finally, the game reached the bottom of the 13th. Tug McGraw was still in, working his fifth frame in relief. Yeah, it was a different time back then. And leading off the inning, Ted Sizemore made him pay.

He hit one out to left field where Cleon Jones attempted to make a shoestring catch – and missed. Sizemore was off to the races. By the time Jones could run down the ball and get it back to the infield, Sizemore was on his way home – and he made it for a walk-off 3-2 win in 13 innings.

Oh, and one final way this game showed how times were different back then: the 13 inning contest finished in just under three hours.

Aside from that, many other events celebrate their anniversary or “day-versary” (which is something that occurred X-thousand days ago) today. Here they are, with the better ones in bold if you’d prefer to just skim through things.”>On Aug. 7, 1972, the Cardinals hosted the Mets for a Monday night game that looked like it would be a great pitchers’ duel. Both teams had their Cooperstown-bound ace taking the hill that day – Tom Seaver for the visitors and Bob Gibson for the home team. Neither pitcher was having their best season in 1972, but both were still terrific talents.

Despite the impressive marquee value on the mound, the game began as anything but a pitcher’s duel, as both squads pushed a run across the plate in the first inning. Bob Gibson surrendered a home run to Wayne Garrett, and Lou Brock made Seaver pay for a leadoff walk by stealing second and scoring on a Joe Torre single.

After that, the game settled down as the pitchers took control. In the second through eighth innings, the squads combined for just one more run. That came in the fourth when Tom Seaver lost his control and walked in a run.

Heading into the ninth, it looked like another Bob Gibson victory would be grinded out. However, in the top of the ninth, Gibson lost his stuff, surrendering back-to-back doubles to tie the score.

Gibson recovered to get the next two guys out. Well, he got one out, and the second one sacrificed himself. In a sign of how the game has changed, with one out and the potential winning run on second base, the Mets let pitcher Tom Seaver bat for himself so he could sacrifice the runner. Mind you, the runner was already in scoring position and this left the Mets with just one out to play with. And it nearly worked for them. Gibson walked the next two batters to load the bases, but got a fly out to end the inning.

On to the bottom of the ninth. There’s only one thing worth noting in this frame. The Mets began the inning with relief pitcher Tug McGraw taking the place of Tom Seaver. This makes it that much odder that Mets manager Yogi Berra would let Seaver bat just a few minutes earlier. Well, McGraw shut down the Cardinals and extra innings beckoned.

Gibson stayed in and for the 24th time in his career recorded the 28th out in a game. But he only lasted one more inning before the bullpen took over in the 11th. And the game kept going on. The only rally came in the top of the 12th with St. Louis reliever Diego Segui walked the first two batters, but then he picked one off and struck the next two out.

Finally, the game reached the bottom of the 13th. Tug McGraw was still in, working his fifth frame in relief. Yeah, it was a different time back then. And leading off the inning Ted Sizemore made him pay.

He hit one out to left field where Cleon Jones attempted to make a shoestring catch – and missed. Sizemore was off to the races. By the time Jones could run down the ball and get it back to the infield, Sizemore was on his way home – and he made it for a walk-off 3-2 win in 13 innings.

Oh, and one final way this game showed how times were different back then: the 13 inning contest finished in just under three hours.

Aside from that, many other events celebrate their anniversary or “day-versary” (which is something that occurred X-thousand days ago) today. Here they are, with the better ones in bold if you’d prefer to just skim through things.

Day-versaries

4,000 days since Bengie Molina gets a hit in his ninth consecutive at bat, an Angels franchise record.

8,000 days since a 37-year-old George Brett triples twice in one game. He’s 4-for-4 with a foiled stolen base attempt as well.

20,000 days since MLB makes a change to the balk rule. The batter has the option of accepting the outcome of the pitch or taking the balk if he prefers. This only can apply if the balk is called after the pitch, obviously.

Anniversaries

1864 Adonis Terry, effective pitcher from 1890s, is born.

1886 Hall of Fame manager Bill McKechnie is born.

1894 Bill Dahlen’s 42 game hitting streak ends as he goes 0-for-6.

1894 Boston’s Jimmy Bannon belts a grand slam in the second consecutive game. He’s the first player to ever do that.

1899 Hall of Famer Vic Willis no-hits Washington.

1901 Milwaukee manager Hugh Duffy punches umpire Al Mannassau over a call in the ninth inning. The AL will give Duffy a four game suspension for this.

1906 Giants manager John McGraw orders the Polo Grounds to refuse to admit umpire Jimmy Johnstone due to McGraw’s anger at a recent Johnstone call. However, Johnstone’s partner refuses the work the game without him, and the Giants forfeit the game.

1907 Walter Johnson wins his first game as Washington tops Cleveland, 7-2.

1911 Joe Tinker doesn’t hit for the cycle against Christy Mathewson, but he comes close. He singles, doubles, triples – and steals home.

1915 Sam Rice, Hall of Famer with 2,987 career hits, makes his big league debut. It’s as a relief pitcher.

1919 The New York Yankees all-time cumulative franchise record bottoms out at 134 games under .500 (1,247-1,381). They’ll tie this low point three more times in 1919, but never go lower.

1920 Authorities charge Giants manager John McGraw with assault and with violating the Volstead Act. He’ll be acquitted.

1923 Cleveland’s Frank Brower gets six hits in one game.

1925 Hall of Fame pitcher Herb Pennock records his 100th loss. His record is 128-100.

1926 After throwing well over 1,000 innings, Hall of Fame Dazzy Vance has his first balk. He’ll have just one more in his career.

1929 For the second straight game, Babe Ruth hits a grand slam. Due to doubleheaders, it’s not the second consecutive game, though.

1929 Don Larsen, the man who threw a perfect game in the World Series, is born.

1930 There’s a classic Negro Leagues pitchers duel today between Smokey Joe Williams and Chet Brewer. In 12 innings, Williams fans 25 and allows one hit in a 1-0 win while Brewer strikes out 19 while surrendering just four hits.

1935 Joe Cronin hits the only walk-off home run of his career.

1936 Chicago White Sox player Tony Piet hits into a walk-off triple play.

1940 Lou Boudreau has a career high six RBIs in one game. He’s 3-for-5 with a pair of home runs.

1941 I wonder what his pitch count was: Bob Feller has a long, long day for Cleveland. He throws 13 innings, allows 13 hits, walks 11, and fans 13 in a 4-3 loss. None of the 13 hits he allowed went for extra bases, which is how he could allow just four runs off 24 base runners. It’s the longest outing of his career. Cleveland scored three times in the bottom of the ninth to tie it.

1943 The Giants leave 18 runners on base, two in each inning, as they lose 9-6 to the Phillies.

1945 Bobby Veach, the only man to ever pinch hit for Babe Ruth, dies.

1946 Bill Benswanger, son-in-law of late Pirates owner Barney Dreyfuss, sells the team to John Galbreath and Frank McKinney for $2.5 million.

1948 Washington’s Sid Hudson has the worst BB:K ratio of any pitcher since at least 1920, walking a dozen and fanning none. He wins anyway, 3-2 over Detroit.

1950 Birmingham police ban three white players from today’s Negro League game between the hometown Black Barons and the Chicago American Giants.

1951 Billy Pierce has his longest complete game win: 13 IP, 9 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 4 BB, and 3 K. He also has a 16 inning no-decision, and a 14 inning loss in his career.

1952 The American League suspends Hall of Fame umpire Bill McGowan indefinitely for giving a St. Louis writer the finger.

1955 Willie Mays hits his 100th career home run.

1956 A record setting minor league crowd of 57,000 sees Satchel Paige pitch for Miami in the Orange Bowl versus Columbus.

1956 Ted Williams has a wild game. He spits at fans who jeer at him for misplaying a ball in the top of the 11th at Fenway, and then draws a walk-off walk in the bottom of the 11th. The club fines Williams $5,000 for spitting.

1956 Moe Drabowsky makes his big league debut.

1958 The Pirates sign amateur free agent Willie Stargell.

1961 Detroit signs amateur free agent Willie Horton.

1962 Don Drysdale wins his 100th game. His record is 100-62 It’s his 11th consecutive win. His line in this streak; 13 G, 12 GS, 103.1 IP, 87 H, 30 R, 27 ER, 16 BB, 81 K, and a 2.35 ERA.

1963 Detroit plays their 12th consecutive game without an error, a new major league record.

1963 Jim Hickman hits for the cycle.

1964 The Mets trade Frank Thomas to the Phillies.

1965 Orioles infielder Mark Belanger makes his major league debut.

1965 For the second time in three days, Willie Mays hits two homers in one contest.

1966 Carl Yastrzemski hits his only career pinch-hit home run.

1967 The Cubs sell veteran pitcher Curt Simmons to the Angels.

1968 Gates Brown is called on to pinch-hit in the sixth inning when he isn’t expecting it. He puts two hot dogs in his back pocket and then has to slide into second for a double.

1968 Joe Keough in Oakland hits a home run in his first at bat.

1969 Cub outfielder Billy Williams is supposed to end his consecutive games streak today, but is called into service in the ninth inning as a pinch-hitter. It’s game No. 1,093 in a row.

1971 Bill Mazeroski plays his only game at third base. He’s at second base for the rest of his career.

1972 A Texas League game in Midland is postponed due to an invasion by a horde of grasshoppers.

1973 Atlanta selects Joe Niekro off of waivers from Detroit.

1973 Danny Graves is born.

1973 Wilbur Cooper, the winningest pitcher in Pirates history, dies.

1973 Graig Nettles has the worst game of his career according to WPA: -0.619 WPA. He’s 0-for-4 with a bases loaded line drive double play with no outs in the ninth. The Yankees lose, 2-1 to Texas.

1974 It’s one of five times Nolan Ryan loses a no-hitter in the ninth. Dick Allen gets the hit. Ryan loses the game ultimately, 2-1 White Sox over the Angels.

1974 Detroit releases longtime veterans Norm Cash and Jim Northrup.

1976 Edgar Renteria is born.

1977 Rod Carew gets three doubles in one game, the only time he ever does that in his career.

1977 Bobby Bonds homers for the fifth consecutive game.

1978 John Sutton becomes the last reliever in Twins history to throw nine innings in one relief outing.

1979 Alan Trammell steals three bases in one game, his best.

1980 The Cubs give out 15,000 Dave Kingman T-shirts at Wrigley Field today – but Kingman doesn’t show up. He stiffs the team to attend a Jet Ski promotion – for which he receives a fee.

1980 Jim Rice lays down a sacrifice bunt for the fifth and final time in his career. He has 5,272 more plate appearances, but will have no more sacrifice hits.

1980 Rod Carew, of all people, hits a walk-off home run. It’s the second of two walk-off homers in a career.

1983 The Yankees host Bobby Murcer Day.

1984 In the ninth inning, Yankees stud Ron Guidry strikes out the side against the White Sox on nine pitches.

1985 After just two games and 25 cancelled games, the players end their strike.

1986 Don Sutton becomes the sixth pitcher to beat all teams. Before him are Rick Wise, Mike Torrez, Gaylord Perry, Doyle Alexander, and Tommy John (with John’s only win against the Dodgers occurring in the World Series).

1986 The Mets release George Foster.

1986 Just five walks after signing him, the Giants release Steve Carlton.

1987 Ryne Sandberg gets his 1,000th hit.

1987 Bill Mazeroski’s No. 9 retired in Pittsburgh.

1988 Donnie Moore plays his last game.

1988 Tom Glavine suffers his seventh straight loss, his worst such streak.

1989 It’s the only time in his streak that Cal Ripken has zero PA in a game. He plays the top of the first at shortstop and then is immediately pulled for a pinch hitter in the bottom of the first. I wonder what the story was that day.

1990 Brian McRae makes his big league debut.

1991 Reds mascot dog Scottzie is put to sleep. He’ll be buried at the home of team owner Marge Schott.

1992 One time slugging great Jack Clark files for bankruptcy. He lists over $11 million in debts and under $5 million in assets. He owns 18 automobiles, one reason why he’s in debt.

1992 The Giants announce the team has been sold to Tampa investors for $110 million and will move to St. Petersburg in 1993. This won’t happen, obviously.

1993 Bob Ojeda returns to action following a preseason boating accident that kills his two teammates.

1993 Bret Saberhagen injures his left knee and will miss the rest of the season.

1994 With baseball heading toward a strike, several players appear in their final game today, most notably Jack Morris, Harold Reynolds, and Bill Gullickson.

1995 Four pitchers for the Fayetteville team in the South Atlantic League combine to fan 19 batters, but lose 6-1 anyway to Savannah.

1996 Chipper Jones receives the first of two career walk-off walks.

1996 Ken Griffey Jr. has his first sacrifice bunt in almost five years. He won’t have another one for another five years.

1997 Former 20-game winner Danny Jackson pitches in his last game.

1999 Wade Boggs joins the 3,000 hit club with a home run – it’s his final home run. When he finishes rounding the bases, he kisses home plate.

1999 Frank Thomas smashes his 300th home run.

2000 Juan Pierre makes his big league debut.

2001 The 10,000 home run in the history of the Philadelphia Phillies franchise is hit by Bobby Abreu.

2001 Bret Saberhagan appears in his last game.

2001 Ex-Bears defensive star Steve “Mongo” McMichael is ejected at Wrigley Field by the umpire Angel Hernandez for criticizing his calls while leading the crowd in the seventh inning stretch singing of “Take Me Out to the Ball Game.”

2002 Toronto’s Chris Woodward this three home runs in one game.

2002 Major league players end their opposition to mandatory drug testing.

2003 Former big leaguer Mickey McDermott dies.

2004 Greg Maddux makes history by winning No. 300. His career record is 300-170. He’ll go 55-57 for the rest of his career.

2005 David Eckstein hits a walk-off grand slam. Rather surprisingly, it’s his second career walk-off grand slam.

2007 There’s a new home run king of all-time, and his name is Barry Bonds. He connects for No. 756 to surpass Hank Aaron today.

2008 Tampa Bay purchases Chad Bradford from the Orioles.

2009 Alex Rodriguez hits a walk-off home run in the bottom of the 15th inning for a 2-0 Yankee win over the Red Sox.

2009 Oakland releases Jason Giambi.

2009 Cleveland trades Carl Pavano to the Twins.

2009 San Diego’s Everth Cabrera hits a walk-off grand slam for a 6-2 win over the Mets.

2009 Cleveland ties an AL record by hitting into six GIDP in one game against Mark Buehrle and the White Sox. I attend that game with White Sox Fan Brother.

2010 The Red Sox sign free agent Carlos Delgado to a minor league contract.

2010 Arizona retires No. 20 for Luis Gonzalez. It’s the first retired number in team history.

2010 J.P. Arencibia makes a great big league debut, going 4-for-5 with two homers, including one in his first at bat.

2010 Toronto hits eight homers in a 17-11 win over Tampa.

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