Jerry Koosman turned in his third consecutive complete game and first shutout of the season as the Mets took a nail-biter of a game, and the series, from the Atlanta Braves by the score of 1-0. Koosman picked up his fourth straight win, while Carl Morton took the hard-luck loss for the home team.
Koosman kept the Atlanta crowd of 12,152 quiet all afternoon, allowing just four hits and a walk while striking out four. Hammerin’ Hank Aaron stayed stuck on 678 home runs and the Braves couldn’t get a man into scoring position, grounding into a couple of double plays during the rare instances when they had any runners on.
Jerry Grote drove in the lone run of the game in the top of the second inning. Ed Kranepool hit a one-out single off Morton, and Wayne Garrett followed with one of his own to advance Kranepool to third. Grote then hit a long fly ball to center field that was deep enough to score Kranepool and put New York up. Kranepool and George Theodore each had two hits for the victorious Mets.
The starting lineups for today’s game looked like this:
New York Mets
|1||Ted Martinez||CF||1||Rod Gilbreath||3B|
|2||Felix Millan||2B||2||Oscar Brown||CF|
|3||George Theodore||LF||3||Hank Aaron||RF|
|4||Rusty Staub||RF||4||Davey Johnson||2B|
|5||Ed Kranepool||1B||5||Darrell Evans||1B|
|6||Wayne Garrett||3B||6||Ralph Garr||LF|
|7||Jerry Grote||C||7||Paul Casanova||C|
|8||Bud Harrelson||SS||8||Sonny Jackson||SS|
|9||Jerry Koosman||P||9||Carl Morton||P|
The Mets finished the first month of the 1973 campaign with a solid 12-8 record, good enough for a first-place tie with the Chicago Cubs atop the National League East.
After a couple of days off, the team will return home to Shea Stadium to host their Western rivals: the Big Red Machine of Cincinnati.