May 26, 2016

Remembering Mets History: (1996) Todd Hundley Sets MLB Season Mark For Catchers With 41 HRs

Saturday September 14th 1996: Bobby Valentine's New York Mets (67-81) hosted Bobby Cox's first place Atlanta Braves (86-61) in front of 22,857 fans at Shea Stadium. 

Tonight the Mets fans witnessed Todd Hundley set a season for most HRs by a catcher, as well as setting an all time Mets single season HR record.

It was to be a long four hour, 12 inning affair that saw Bobby Valentine & Bobby Cox each use 23 players on the extended September rosters. Overall 14 different pitchers were used by both clubs in total.

 Starting Lineups

 The Braves jumped out first with two unearned runs in the 1st inning & two runs in the 3rd, on hits from Terry Pendleton, Chipper Jones, & Ryan Klesco. Fred McGriff added an RBI hit in the 5th making it 5-0 Braves.

In the home 7th inning, pinch hit base hits by Matt Franco & Carl Everett started up a Mets rally. Lance Johnson then singled to load the bases. Bernard Gilkey made it a 5-2 with a double to left field off Atlanta reliever; Greg McMichael. Next up was Todd Hundley. Hundley then hit his record setting HR, a three run blast over the left field fence, tying up the game at 5-5.
Hundley had just passed Daryl Strawberry, for the Mets single season mark a few days earlier. Straw had hit 39 HRs back in 1987, a decade prior. Carlos Beltran tied Hundley's Mets single season mark with 41 in 2006.

For Hundley, the 41st HR passed Hall of Famer; Roy Campanella's previous mark of 40 HRs set back in 1953 with the Brooklyn Dodgers. Javy Lopez has since broken the record with 43 HRs in 2003.

The Mets went on to win the game with a walk off base hit from Lance Johnson in the 12th inning.

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