The San Diego Padres’ Leron Lee killed Tom Seaver’s chance of throwing the first New York Mets’ no-hitter in the ninth inning, 44 years ago today.
Seaver took a no-hitter into the ninth inning at Shea Stadium on July 4, 1972, although he walked two batters in the fourth and two batters in the eighth, so the perfect game was off the board.
Seaver took the mound in the ninth and got Dave Roberts to ground out before Leron Lee lined a ball up the middle to end the no-no bid. He then got Nate Colbert to ground into a 6-4-3 double play to end the game for a 2-0 complete-game shutout, Seaver’s fourth career one-hitter.
Seaver struck out 11 batters, and the Mets scored their only runs with two outs in the third when Jim Fregosi and Ed Kranepool drew bases-loaded walks from the Padres’ Clay Kirby.
It was the Mets’ ninth one-hitter and it marked the team’s 1,692nd game without a no-hitter. On the other side, Kirby lost his no-hitter on Wayne Garrett’s first-inning single to move the Padres’ count to 556 games.
The Mets count ended at 8,019; the Padres count is at 7,572 games and still growing.