May 13, 2021

Remembering Mets History (1970) Gary Gentry Tosses A One Hitter

 Wednesday May 13th 1970: A small crowd of just over 9000 came out to a Wrigley Field day game, where Leo Durocher's first place Cubs (16-13), hosted Gil Hodges reigning World Champion New York Mets (16-16).

The starting pitchers were, New Jersey's Bill Hands (5-1) facing off against Mets youngster, Gary Gentry (3-1). In the 1969 Championship season, the rookie Gentry had been overlooked on a staff that featured Tom Seaver, Jerry Koosman & Nolan Ryan. 

But Gentry had a fine year & a fine post season as well. Gentry had some fine outings as a New York Met afterward as well, this being one of his better days.

Bill hands took the mound & struck out the Mets in order in the 1st inning. In the 4th inning, with one out Art Shamsky homered over the right field wall, his 4th HR of the season. In the tip of the 5th, Wayne Garrett led off with a double to left field. Jerry Grote then flew out to center, advancing Garrett to third.

Next the pitcher, Gentry helped his own cause by delivering a base hit to leftfield, scoring Garrett with the Mets second run. 

In the 7th, Mike Jorgensen led off with a walk. Garrett then tripled to centerfield, scoring Jorgensen with the third run. Jerry Grote then singled to make it 4-0 Mets. 

As for Gentry he retired the Cubs in order in the first two innings. In the 3rd, he struck out the side, fanning Jimmie Hall, Jack Hiatt & Bill Hands. In the 4th he struck out the lead off man, Don Kessinger, then got Glen Beckert to fly out, then ended the inning by striking out Billy Williams.

In the 5th, Gentry issued his only walk, a lead off base on balls to Ron Santo. He quickly got Johnny Callison to ground into a double play, then retired Ernie Banks on a ground out.

Gentry retired the sides in order in the 6th & 7th innings as well, as a no-hitter loomed in the air. 

In the 8th inning, Gentry got Santo to fly out for the first out. Next, Callison flew out to right for the second out. Ernie Banks stepped in & looped a fly ball to left field. Mets outfielder, Dave Marshall could not catch up to it, the ball dropped for a base hit. 

Gentry had lost his no hitter. He moved on & got Jimmie Hall to fly out for the third out. In the 9th, after hitting Jack Hiatt to fly out, he hit Willie Smith with a pitch. 

He got the next two outs, ending the game getting Glen Beckert to fly out.

Gentry pitched a one hit complete game shut out, striking out seven while walking one for his fourth win of the year. Gentry would pitch another one hitter for the Mets next year, in 1971.

This was the fifth one hitter in Mets history. Nolan Ryan had tossed a one hitter a month earlier. In just two days, Tom Seaver would throw his second career one hitter.

In 1970 Gary Gentry went 9-9 with a 3.68 ERA. He struck out 134 batters & walked 86 in 188 innings pitched. In 35 appearances he had five complete games & threw two shut outs.

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