METS FANS SHARE THEIR MEMORIES OF THE APRIL 17, 1977 GAME:
September 11, 2000
I was ten-years old and it was my first game. My mother passed away the Christmas before. I supposed my father thought it was about time for me to be a serious fan. Or maybe losing his best friend, he needed to start a new one. My father and I really don't communicate much, we never really recovered from my mother's death. But, when one of us blinks and decides its been too long since we last spoke, in good or bad times, "How bout those METS!" is as good as it gets...
September 30, 2003
Of all the games I went to as a kid on our family's Sunday ticket plan, this one sticks out. And the one play that sticks out is not Seaver's mastery over the hapless Jose Cardenal-era Cubs, but the single hit: a soft liner by Steve Ontiveros that Ed Kranepool tried to make a shoestring catch of, but ended up one-hopping. I'd never seen a no-hitter at the time (this would later be rectified thanks to Jim Abbott and Doc Gooden), and it burned me that Tom and I both missed our one chance because of our rightfielder's aged knees.
Flash forward six years. I am in high school, when a classmate comes running up to me with the news: "Guess who's here? Ed Kranepool!" He had dropped by to give an anti-drug talk or somesuch, and was now hanging out in the physics lab, just chatting with students.
I rushed up to him, this hero of my youth who'd been a Met since before I was born, and immediately blurted out: "Hi! I would've seen Tom Seaver pitch a no-hitter if not for you!" And related the tale of Ontiveros' lone single, and his failure to dive for the ball.
Without missing a beat, he replied: "Oh, yeah. I remember that play. Even Swoboda couldn't have made that play."
You gotta love Ed Kranepool.
October 3, 2003
Neil, at least you didn't have to bite your nails through the whole game! The single by Ontiveros came with one out in the in the fifth inning.
With the Mets up 3-0 after six and a half innings, here's how the bottom of the seventh started:
Roy Staiger reached on an error by Ontiveros. Bud Harrelson reached on an error by Larry Biittner. Tom Seaver struck out. Lee Mazzilli reached on another error by Biittner, scoring Staiger. Felix Millan reached on an error by Ivan DeJesus to load the bases.
Bruce Boisclair then singled to drive in two and give the Mets a 6-0 lead. But how about those gloves on the Cubs? The Mets had the equivalent of seven outs in that inning!
March 24, 2006
I was at this game also. 13 years old, with my Dad. Even though Kranepool couldn't come up with the hit by Ontiveros, I remember he did make a leaping catch at the fence to rob a homer from one of the Cubs. (Don't remember which one). Also remember Kingman hitting a home run that was tremendously high in the air, took forever to come down and just cleared the fence in left- center.
August 7, 2007
I remember watching this on TV. I can't remember the Cubs getting good wood on the ball the entire game! I remember the lone hit that Kranepool let drop in. I wouldn't even categorize it as a line drive! It was more like a looping fly ball that just fell in the grass in right field and died. Without a doubt, Tom Seaver deserved a no-hitter for that game!
September 6, 2008
Remember being at this game with a buddy (we were about 14 years old) and cringing before the start when a older guy - a grandpa with his family - started saying over and over before the game that "Seaver's pitching a no-hitter today. Today is the day. He's pitching a no-hitter today."
September 6, 2008
I was going to type what John S. already did.
I was also at this game with my dad (photo album day, wasn't it?), but, as a 10 year old kid, I rationalized it by saying without Kranepool's catch, the Cubs would have had a HR, so somehow the two plays canceled each other out.
I guess I'm outnumbered on this page, but I always remembered that Kranepool did dive, but still short-hopped Ontiveres's ball.
I feel like this one-hitter is never talked about in Mets lore, but as one-hitters go, this was as close as the Mets have come--maybe 3-4 inches?? The other one that comes to mind is Gooden versus the Cubs in '84 where Knight should have been given an error on Moreland nubber and then the Mets actually DO have their first no-no.
May 27, 2011
I remember this game very well; it was Mets Photo Album day,and my two favorite Mets of all time were playing. Being a Met fan, we all loved Tom Seaver. Tom pitched a masterful game, keeping the Cub hitters off balance all game. I remember Ed Kranepool leaping up over the right field fence and robbing a Cub player of a home run. Kranepool also slightly misjudged the low liner in right, causing Tom to lose his no-hitter. I also remember Dave Kingman hitting a towering home run over the left centerfield wall off of Bill Bonham. Kingman's homer was a moon shot that took forever to fall to earth. The standing ovation the Shea stadium fans gave Seaver after the last out was beautiful.