Tonight at Shea Stadium, in front of 51,381 fans, the Mets clobbered the Pirates 10-3 to take over first place in the N.L. East. With the win, the Mets reached the .500 mark with a record of 77-77 and took a half game lead in the division with a little over a week remaining in the season.
After Tom Seaver shut the Pirates down in the top of the first, the Mets erupted for four runs in the bottom half. The damage was done by Cleon Jones and Jerry Grote, who both cracked two run doubles to give the Mets a 4-0 advantage.
With Seaver cruising, the Mets were in complete control, but they added a run in the sixth and three more in the eighth to take a 10-2 lead.
Seaver shut down the Pirates in the ninth to secure the victory and vault the Mets into first place.
Here’s the box score and starting lineups from the game:
New York Mets
|1. Wayne Garrett, 3B||1. Dave Cash, 2B|
|2. Felix Millan, 2B||2. Dave Parker, CF|
|3. Rusty Staub, RF||3. Al Oliver, 1B|
|4. John Milner, 1B||4. Willie Stargell, LF|
|5. Cleon Jones, LF||5. Richie Hebner, 3B|
|6. Dave Schneck, CF||6. Richie Zisk, RF|
|7. Jerry Grote, C||7. Milt May, C|
|8. Bud Harrelson, SS||8. Dal Maxvill, SS|
|9. Tom Seaver, P||9. Steve Blass, P|
The Mets open a two game set with the Cardinals tomorrow at Shea.