Weekend Rewind: Opening Day 1982
Mets freeze Phillies, 7-2, for eighth straight Opening Day win.
The first bid at Opening Day in Philadelphia was scraped after a snowstorm blasted the Northeast the first week of April.
With the Mets snowbound in New York, a dozen members of the Phillies grounds crew, a Jeep and a Zamboni shoveled and plowed away snow to minimize the turf from freezing.
John Stearns told the media he was ''shocked” to see heavy snowfall when I woke up on the morning of the scheduled opener. “After 80 degrees in Florida, it's a shock to play baseball in freezing weather,'' he said.
New Mets manager George Bamberger said:
''I telephoned my wife in Florida, and she laughed like crazy. No sympathy. She told me it was my idea to come back, and I was stuck with it.''
The next morning the Mets boarded two buses and headed down the New Jersey Turnpike to Veterans Stadium.
The two-day setback, 41 degree temperatures and 21 mph winds didn’t seem to stop the Mets bats as they recorded their eighth straight Opening Day win, beating Steve Carlton and the Phillies, 7-2.
Bob Bailor led the offense with three hits including a pair of doubles and three RBI.
''Why do I hit Carlton? I don't know. I faced him once last year, and got two hits. I used to hit Ron Guidry, too, when other guys couldn't touch him.” - Bob Bailor
The Phillies had sold 41,000 seats for the scheduled Tuesday night opener, but after a heavy snowfall and two postponements, only 15,345 showed up, leaving 50,000 empty seats.
Opening Day Lineup
Mookie Wilson - CF
Bob Bailor - SS
George Foster - LF
Dave Kingman - 1B
Joel Youngblood - RF
John Stearns - C
Hubie Brooks - 3B
Ron Gardenhire - 2B
Randy Jones - P
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