Apr 27, 2020

Remembering Mets History (1984): Kooz Returns To Shea On Strawberry Sundae

Sunday, April 29th 1984: On this Sunday afternoon, the Mets presented Darryl Strawberry with his 1983 Rookie of the Year Award. 

In his honor, Carvel & the Mets offered free Strawberry Sundae's to the fans. Good times were back again at Shea Stadium, as the Mets were a much improved team & ready to contend.

Also on this day, a familiar & popular face from the past was returning to Shea Stadium. Mets legend, Jerry Koosman, now a member of the Phillies was making a triumphant return to Shea. 

Kooz had spent 12 years with the Mets, pitching in two World Series & winning a Championship. 

He was the Mets best post season pitcher ever, going 4-0 with a 2.66 ERA with 31 Ks in 40 innings of work. As a Met he was second all time in wins (140). Koosman left the Mets after the 1978 season, since then he had been in the AL with his home state's team, the Minnesota Twins (1979-1981) & the Chicago White Sox (1981-1983). The Shea fans gave him a nice ovation in thanks for all his great Mets achievements.

A crowd of 28,562 enjoyed their ice cream & watched Davey Johnson's Mets (12-8) host Paul Owen's Philadelphia Phillies (11-8). The Mets Walt Terrell (2-1) took on the Phils' Jerry Koosman (1-3).

The Phils got on the board first, as Juan Samuel singled & scored on Len Matuszek's double in the 1st inning.

But the Mets got right back, Ron Gardenhire led off with a base hit & advanced to second on Keith Hernandez's ground out. George Foster singled off Koosman to tie the game at one.

In the 3rd, Jose Oquendo reached on an error & advanced on a force play. He then stole third & scored when Koosman balked. It was 2-1 Mets. In the 4th, the honored Met of the day, Darryl Strawberry doubled & went to third on an error. 

Mookie Wilson quickly brought him in with a base hit to make it 3-1. The Phils hot within a run, as Len Matuszek collected another RBI with a single.

Terrell & Koosman would battle it out until the 6th inning. Koosman walked Strawberry to start the 6th, then with two outs, catcher Mike Fitzgerald singled. The Phils went to the pen, as Koosman exited to another ovation. Kevin Gross came in to pitch & Davey Johnson sent Rusty Staub in to pinch hitter.

Staub, one of the best pinch hitters of the day, delivered with a base hit scoring Strawberry with his second run of the day.  In the 7th, Keith Hernandez hit a solo HR, his first HR of the year making it 5-2 Mets.

Jesse Orosco relieved Doug Sisk to pitch the 8th inning, in the bottom frame, Hubie Brooks reached on a Mike Schmidt error. He then stole second. Orosco came to the plate & singled to left field scoring the Mets sixth run. It was one of four career RBIs for Orosco in 59 at bats over a 24 year career.

The Mets won the game 6-2 with Terrell getting the win & Orosco the save. The Mets would win 90 games in 1984 (90-72) finishing in second place. Jerry Koosman would take the loss, he would win 14 games on the year, best on the Phillies staff as they finished .500 at 81-81. Koosman in his 18th season would retire after the next season.

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