Carpenter’s Defensive Play Already Among Most Memorable

By Unknown author
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Tommie Agee and Ron Swoboda Rob Orioles Time and Time Again

What’s The Situation: The ’69 Mets climbed out of the perennial National League basement on the strength of pitching and defense and met the mighty Baltimore Orioles in what should have been a mismatch.

What Happened: The Orioles were built on pitching, defense and middle of the order power. The Mets countered with arms and gloves of their own and, more importantly, a couple of daring and well-placed- if not lucky- outfielders. The Mets were leading 4-0 in Game 3 but the bases loaded for the Baltimore  in the 7th inning.  If Agee doesn’t make the catch (left), the score probably would have been 4-3 and the whole momentum of the game and the series could have shifted to the Orioles.  What made this catch so phenomenal wasn’t just the distance Agee covered to make it, but the fact that this was Agee’s second circus catch of the game (above left). The Mets went on to win this game 5-0. The next day Ron Swoboda came out of nowhere for a diving catch of Brooks Robinson’s line drive in the ninth inning of Game 4. The tying run scored on the play, but Swoboda’s catch (above right) kept the Orioles from having a big inning and allowed the Mets to rally late and win the game.

What It Meant: Instead of being down three games to one or tied at two and two, the upstart Mets outfield play had them jumping out to a three games to one lead. More importantly, the plays seemed to demoralize the over-powering Orioles and the Amazin’s were able to wrap up the upset in five games.