My First World Series Game
The 1973 World Series Met's vs. A's
The 1973 World Series between the World Champion Oakland A’s and the National League Champion New York Mets was a series, lasting 7 games. The reason I say great is, to me any post season affair that goes the duration of 7 games means that both teams have given an excellent account of their playing abilities.
It was an interesting summer. The Mets as late as mid August were completely out of the pennant race. When September got here they became the hottest team in the league. Although they finished with an overall regular season record of 82 Wins 79 Loses, this was still good enough to win the National League East by 1-1/2 games over the St. Louis Cardinals. It was an interesting NL playoff that year, the Cincinnati Reds took the Mets to 5 full games however lost that fifth game of the playoffs. This Met’s team had stars such as; Buddy Harrelson, Tom Seaver, Willie Mays, Jerry Koosman and Tug McGraw, to name just a few. The New York Mets were in the World Series for the first time since 1969 !
The Oakland A’s had continued their American League Western Division domination that year, winning the division for the third consecutive season. The Baltimore Orioles did give the A’s a tussle in the American League Playoffs that year, as it took Oakland the full 5 games to overcome the Orioles. The A’s had many superstars on that team including; Reggie Jackson, Jim Catfish Hunter, Rollie Fingers, Vida Blue and Kenny Holtzman, to name just a few. It was on to the World Series for the A’s for the second year in a row !
Games 1 & 2 were played in Oakland with each team winning a game, and then it was on to Shea Stadium for games 3,4 & 5. On October 16 1973 I went to my first World Series game seeing these 2 teams play at Shea. At over 3 hours long, the A’s prevailed by a score of 3-2 in 11 innings. Highlights included; Wayne Garretts first inning home run off Catfish Hunter and Tom Seaver striking out 12 in 8 innings of work. Rollie Fingers got the save in the 11th inning as the A’s took a 2 games to 1 series lead in front of a sold out crowd.
This was the first of many World Series games I’d ever go to. As a sports fan you always want to go to that "big game." Let me tell you-it was cold out that night-so cold that there was a heavy flurry of snow in the air prior to game time. Sometimes being there is great-but sometimes being at home in your easy chair isn’t that bad either. Note to self-next time bring winter gloves ! It was a great time !
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