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The Day in Sports | COUNTDOWN TO 2000 / A day-by-day
recap of some of the most important sports moments
of the 20th Century: APRIL 22, 1970

Finish to This Game Terrific for Seaver

April 22, 1999|EARL GUSTKEY | TIMES STAFF WRITER

How's this for finishing a game?

Twenty-nine years ago today, the New York Mets' Tom Seaver struck out the last 10 San Diego Padre batters he faced and finished with a record-tying 19 strikeouts in a 2-1 win at Shea Stadium.

Ten is still the major league record for consecutive strikeouts in a game.

Seaver, then 25 and coming off a 25-7 season in 1969--the year the Mets won the World Series--told writers afterward he didn't consider himself a strikeout pitcher.

"I made a liar out of myself today, but I've said before I'm not a strikeout pitcher and I still don't think I am," he said.

Seaver said he was going for strikeouts only on Nos. 16 and 19. The 16th broke the Met record, held by Jerry Koosman and Nolan Ryan.

The 19th tied the then-major league record for a nine-inning game set by Steve Carlton in 1969.

A crowd of 21,694 stood and cheered on every pitch as Seaver faced Al Ferrara with two out in the ninth. Seaver went to a 1-and-2 count on Ferrara, who had homered off him in the second inning and was the first strikeout victim of the final 10.

Seaver then blew a fastball past Ferrara for his 10th consecutive strikeout and his 19th for the game.

In his two-hitter, Seaver retired the last 16 hitters. He threw 83 fastballs, 34 sliders, 19 curves and two changeups.

Also on this date: In 1967, two collegians set eye-popping track and field marks. Texas A&M's Randy Matson broke his world record in the shotput with a 71-5 1/2 heave, and Kansas' Jim Ryun ran an NCAA record 3:54.7 for the mile. . . . In 1976, Darryl Sittler scored five goals to lead Toronto to an 8-5 NHL playoff win over Philadelphia. . . . In 1958, the Minneapolis Lakers made Elgin Baylor their first draft pick. . . . In 1952, heavyweight Rocky Marciano moved his record to 40-0 with a knockout of Gino Buonvino at Providence, R.I.

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