Ranking the New York Mets' 8 Greatest World Series Moments
This year's World Series has already come and gone. Congratulations goes out to the San Francisco Giants for defeating the Detroit Tigers to win their second title in three seasons and seventh overall.
The Fall Classic is special not only because it showcases the best baseball has to offer, but it allows fans to take a look back and relive some of the best moments in the game's history.
The New York Mets have made four World Series appearances, and while the club only managed to win it twice (1969 and 1986), lots of great moments were made and forever cemented into baseball history.
Here is a look back at some of the best Mets World Series moments.
8. 2000 World Series: A Series to Forget
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The 2000 World Series featured the New York Yankees against the New York Mets in the "Subway Series" in a matchup that, quite frankly, was unfair for the Mets.
The battle in the Big Apple was completely one-sided, as the Bronx Bombers treated their New York counterpart like the little brother they are, teasing them with each game until ultimately winning in five games.
The lone Mets victory came in Game 3 in Shea Stadium. The Mets got off to a quick lead with a Robin Ventura home run to lead off the second inning.
The Yankees came right back to tie it in the third inning and took the lead in the fourth. Todd Zeile tied it back up at 2-2 in the sixth with a double off Orlando Hernandez, giving the Mets hope.
Benny Agbayani eventually became the hero, driving in the winning run in the eighth off "El Duque" and, more notably, gave Hernandez his first postseason loss after going 6-0 previously.
7. 1986 Game 3: Dykstra Provides the Spark
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The New York Mets found themselves in a hole after losing the first two games of the 1986 World Series against the Boston Red Sox.
Game 3 shifted the series to Fenway Park in Boston. The Mets needed a spark, and they found one with Lenny Dykstra.
"Nails" led off the game with a home run off a 1-1 pitch from Oil Can Boyd, and New York never looked back. The Mets put together four runs in the first and went on to win 7-1, finding themselves right back in the series.
Dykstra had a great game, going 4-for-5, and he really got the Mets believing again after his lead off shot.
6. 1973 Game 2: A "Say Hey" Farewell
Mays being introduced in Game 1 of the 1973 World Series
Game 2 of this series turned out to be one of the most memorable games in World Series history.
Legendary Willie Mays recorded the last hit and RBI of his major league career as he broke a 6-6 tie and drove in the eventual game-winning run in the top of the 12th inning off Rollie Fingers. The Mets went on to win 10-7 and tie the series at 1-1.
At the time, this game was the longest in postseason history, as it took four hours and 13 minutes to complete.
5. 1969 Game 2: Jerry Koosman in Shut-Down Mode
1969 World Series Highlights
The 1969 New York Mets were the proverbial underdog story as they squared off against the Baltimore Orioles in the World Series.
It was the first winning season in the Mets' brief history, so making the Fall Classic was quite an achievement.
After losing Game 1, Jerry Koosman took the mound for New York and shut down the vaunted Orioles offense. He threw six innings of no-hit baseball while holding onto a 1-0 lead.
The Orioles fought back in the seventh, scoring a run that tied the game, but the Mets were not to be outdone. Al Weis knocked in the winning run in the top of the ninth inning and won 2-1.
Koosman was on track to get the complete game, but a couple of two-out walks in the bottom of the ninth took him out.
Still, his performance helped the Mets get their first World Series game win, and they never looked back after that game.
4. 1969 Game 3: Tommie Agee Saves the Day
1969 Mets highlights
Tommie Agee put together the performance of a lifetime in Game 3 of the 1969 World Series. The Mets' center fielder hit a leadoff home run off Jim Palmer in the bottom of the first inning and never looked back as the Mets went on to win 5-0 while taking a 2-1 series lead.
Not only did Agee drive in the winning run of the game, but he saved about five runs with his play in center field.
Sports Illustrated called it the greatest game played by a center fielder in World Series history:
The third game may well turn out to be the best that Tommie Agee will ever play; it probably is the most spectacular World Series game that any center fielder has ever enjoyed. Agee is easily the best example of Gil Hodges' patience. Twenty-seven different players had worked in center field for New York before Agee arrived in 1968 from the Chicago White Sox. On the first pitch of spring training that year he was hit in the head by Bob Gibson of the Cardinals, and early in the regular season he went through an 0-for-34 slump. He hit only .171 in Shea Stadium and seemed to take the Great Circle Route under fly balls. He was pressing. But, although he could not seem to do anything right, Hodges kept playing him, telling Agee not to quit on himself.
At first, 1969 was not an easy year for Agee, either. He encountered slumps and Hodges benched him but, as the Mets played good ball, Agee became a vital man in the attack. He started rallies on offense and stopped the opposition with fine catches in the outfield.But nothing he did in the regular season approached his third-game performance. Behind 3-0, Baltimore started what looked like a big rally in the fourth inning by putting two runners on with two out and Elrod Hendricks at bat. Normally a pull hitter, Hendricks hit a pitch to deep left center, and Agee, shaded toward right, went galloping after the ball. He caught it two steps from the wall with a spectacular backhand catch to end the inning. Three innings later, after an even longer run, he dove to rescue a potential triple with the bases loaded. Agee had made a difference of five runs on defense with his fielding and one on offense with his homer as New York won 5-0.
3. 1986 Game 7: The Comeback Is Complete
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Game 7 of the 1986 World Series capped off an amazing run by the New York Mets.
The Boston Red Sox started out with an early lead, tagging Ron Darling for three runs in the second inning.
It looked like Red Sox would salvage the series and "break the curse," but a rally sparked by Keith Hernandez in the sixth tied it up for the Mets.
A Ray Knight home run in the bottom of the seventh inning gave New York the lead and eventually scored two more in the frame to go up 6-3.
After Mets reliever Roger McDowell allowed Boston to get back in it with a couple of runs, Darryl Strawberry added some insurance with bomb to right, and the Mets never looked back.
Jesse Orosco slammed the door shut, striking out the side in the ninth to secure the second Mets World Series title in their history.
Ray Knight went on to be named the MVP of the 1986 World Series.
2. 1969 Game 5: The "Shoe Polish Play"
photo courtesy of nydailynews.com
The Baltimore Orioles were stunned heading into Game 5 of the 1969 World Series. The team had its back against the wall and jumped out early to grab a 3-0 lead against the Mets.
New York had its fortunes turned around, thanks to a little shoe polish.
The Mets went up to bat in the sixth, and Orioles pitcher Dave McNally hit Cleon Jones in the foot. The umpire ruled that Jones was not hit, but then Mets manger Gil Hodges got hold of the ball.
Hodges proved to the umpire that there was indeed shoe polish on the ball, and Jones was awarded first base.
The "Miracle" Mets rallied in the sixth with a couple of runs and eventually carried that momentum into the seventh and eighth innings, as they scored three more times, won the game 5-3 and the series in five games in one of the most improbable upsets in World Series history.
1. 1986 Game 6: Buckner's Blunder
It was Game 6 of the 1986 World Series, and the Boston Red Sox were on the verge of winning their first title in 68 years.
Winning 5-3, Boston got two outs in the bottom of the 10th inning, and pitcher Calvin Schiraldi unraveled.
He allowed base hits to Gary Carter and Kevin Mitchell, followed by Ray Knight, who got a base knock to drive in Carter and Mitchell to third.
Boston brought in Bob Stanley to face Mookie Wilson. Both battled in the 10-pitch at-bat. Stanley went wild with a pitch that allowed Mitchell to score and move Knight to second. It also set up the mistake everyone remembers most: Bill Buckner's error.
The ball Wilson tapped down the first-base line looked routine, but Buckner allowed the ball to slip under his glove, and the rest is history.
Knight came around to score, and the Mets took Game 6 and went on to take the series in seven games.
Buckner's blunder turned out to be one of the worst moments in Red Sox history but the best in Mets history.