METS FANS SHARE THEIR MEMORIES OF THE APRIL 22, 1970 GAME:
April 22, 2002
I was lucky enough to be home, sick from school on this day, and watched on channel 9 as Tom pitched an absolute gem.
He struck out 19 Padres, which was the all-time MLB record, and most notably, he struck out the last ten in a row!!! You had the feeling that if the game had kept going he would've struck out even more.
It shocks me to see that San Diego scored a run that day. Possibly the most dominant, overpowering performance by the greatest Met of all.
July 22, 2002
This game was played during a week I had off from college; in a few weeks the entire term would be truncated because of the rippling effects of the Kent State incident. But on this day, I recall doing homework in my room and listening to the game on the radio. It was amazing- Tom had so many strikeouts in this game, and then to have fanned the 10 guys in a row to end it. What a performance!!!! The fact that it was San Diego, an expansion team in their 2nd year out of the gate, didn't seem to matter. They had guys like Ferrara and Gaston, and Tom struck them out along with all the others. A real gem. At this point, I felt sure we were going to win another pennant. So much for feelings.
September 25, 2002
I can still clearly remember listening to this game on my transistor radio and rooting Seaver on as he piled on the strikeouts. 10 in a row! Seaver was even exciting over the radio.
September 30, 2002
The only historical game I have witnessed in person. Took a school trip from Wade J.H.S 117 (Bx.) which turned out to be the first Earth Day of all things. Seaver was simply dominant that day. I believe a SD player hit a homer that day. From the 6th inning on probably the most dominant pitching performance I have seen! A MLB record of 10 consecutive K's.
November 10, 2002
My friend Howard L. and I went to the game and sat in box seats on the loge deck. Contrary to what the other comment said, the game was not televised.
Seaver gave up 2 hits, one was a homer to Al Ferrara.. I beleive the other hit was by Mike Corkins, the S.D. pitcher.
It was during passover, and being a good Jewish boy, we threw the buns away and just ate the hot dogs with our hands.
Tom's strikeouts by inning:
2 1 2 2 1 2 3 3 3=19
January 23, 2003
April 22, 1970 was the first Earth Day, and, surprisingly, the school district in which I was a 4th grader gave us the day off. I prevailed on my father to take me to this weekday afternoon game, despite my mother's protests about burning gasoline on Earth Day. The crowd was only 7,000, so we got Field Box seats on the first base side. The drama of what Seaver did not develop until very late, because it was the last 10 that he struck out (a record that still stands?). At the end of eight, they announced on the scoreboard that he had set a team record with 16 strikeouts. In the 9th, you just knew no one was going to touch him. I don't remember whether they announced anything about the 10 straight. They might well have. In any event, we knew he had to get the last guy for a record, whether it was 19 or the 10. My best friend was so excited he was waiting for me in my driveway when we got home.
August 8, 2003
My friend's Dad took us to the game because we had Easter Vacation and no school. We walked up and like the previous poster bought field boxes on the first base side for $4.00! I remember Al Ferrara hitting the HR. My most vivid memory was the 9th inning with everyone in the stadium standing on their seats as Tom struck out the side for the 3rd inning in a row.
March 10, 2004
My college pal Paul and I ditched school (CCNY) for this classic. As games went, this one was rather lackluster with not much offense to speak of. Of course this game was not about offensive sparks, but pitching superlatives. Of couse we're talking about Seaver's 19 punch outs against the Padres. What I remember most was that while Tom had a lot of early stikeouts, it became clear that to reach 19 he would have to strike out the side for not only the 7th inning, but the 8th and 9th as well. And he did. Unreal. To be sure, this was for the ages.
September 15, 2004
As a kid, I went to so many day games at Shea that I lost count, but this one was AMAZIN! It was Easter vacation, so my dad got my sis and I box seats for the game from a work contact. Tom Terrific was my favorite player, of course, and I was keeping score. In the late innings, everyone started noticing that our scorecards were reading K,K,K,K,K,...In the end, Seaver struck out 19, including the last 10 in a row. The perspective of time makes the latter feat stand out as one of the wonders of baseball history. In an age in which starters are on pitch counts, and rarely pitch past the 6th or 7th inning, I can't imagine any pitcher today being able to get more and more untouchable deep into the late innings, like Tom Seaver was on this April afternoon. The most amazing pitching performance I've ever seen, period! And I was blessed to be there at Shea that day!
Tom "Tommie" Clark
December 14, 2004
Contrary to what Mr. Cohen wrote, the game was indeed televised that day. And Seaver defined the term "rising fastball" with his thrilling performance.
William M. Franz
April 2, 2007
I was 8 years old, and Tom Seaver was already my one-and-only hero. My dad knew it and found me when the game was in the 5th inning. Seaver was so unique! As I came in the room first thing you look for is the marks on his right leg and the "hop." He already had a double mark and it may be my imagination but I recall just the beginning of a third. Immediately you knew he was strong and it was Seaver vs Seaver, there was really nobody else on the field that mattered.
The "hop" that day was unique. On days he was average Seaver you got a baby hop. On the days he was strong you got a hop as he came into his fielding stance and a second one forward toward the batter from the momentum of his leg drive. That second hop took him to the perimeter of the dirt on the mound.
In the last three innings of this game, his momentum carried him to the grass in front of the mound a good yard. It was beautiful to watch as even Seaver himself could not repeat such mechanics but a few times in 20 years. We watched and commented on the distance he went after each pitch, how his release point was as far from 60 feet 6 inches as you will ever see and the movement on his rising fastball that was on the black and unhittable. In the 9th, we witnessed perfection.
God I wish they sold games like that; it is a shame you cannot share it with today's kids
November 4, 2007
Note also that Jerry Grote set a Mets record with 20 putouts in this game. I do not recall what the putout other than the Seaver strikeouts was.
July 16, 2008
At the recent All-Star Fan Fest, my wife bought for me a painting of Tom Seaver pitching in the ninth inning of this game with the scoreboard in the background showing the score, lineups (with Joe Foy at 3rd) the Rheingold sign and the message board announcing the Wunderkind's accomplishment. Though the missus does not want to put it up this is priceless.
August 18, 2011
I was lucky enough to attend this game. It was a class trip with Mr. Schuler from JHS#7 on Staten Island. What a great class trip, to watch Seaver strike out 19.