May 24, 2016

Remembering Mets History: (1984) Doc Gooden Strike Out 14 Dodgers

Friday Night May 25th 1984: Davey Johnson's third place Mets (21-18) hosted Tommy Lasorda's first place Los Angeles Dodgers (25-22). A good crowd of 27, 340 came out to Shea Stadium to watch the Mets new young, 19 year old pitcher; Dwight Gooden, whom everyone was starting to talk about.

This youngster not only had one of the games best blazing fastballs, but a curve so good, Mets Broadcaster; Ralph Kiner named it- "Lord Charles".

At this point Gooden had a 3-3 record with a 4.15 ERA in eight career starts. He had struck out 59 batters in 43 innings pitched & already had three games where he struck out ten or more batters.

Looking back you could say it was tonight that Gooden came into the spotlight for good, Doctor K established himself in the National League. He would allow just one run & three hits to the mighty Dodgers while striking out a career high up that point 14 batters. In September Gooden would have back to back 16 strike out games. The "K Korner" in the upper deck was now on the Shea Stadium map in history as well.

Gooden began the game striking out Pedro Guerrero & Franklin Stubbs to end the 1st inning. He struck out Terry Whitfield in the second, then struck out two more batters in both the 3rd & 4th innings. In the  6th he began the inning striking out Steve Sax & ended it with a another K on Franklin Stubbs.

In the 7th he got Mike Scioscia & Terry Whitfield to go down on strikes for the first two outs. He added another strike out in the 8th & began the 9th inning with a 2-0 lead.

The Mets offense was provided by George Foster who hit a solo HR & Keith Hernandez who drove in Mookie Wilson with a base hit. He surrendered a lead off HR to Guerrero & Davey Johnson rushed out to remove Gooden. He left the field with a standing ovation. Jesse Orosco came on for the save.

Trivia: Gooden would win the 1984 Rookie of the Year Award, leading the league in strikeouts (289) strike outs per nine innings (11.4) & WHIP (1.073). He would go 17-9 with a 2.60 ERA.

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