Mets Rewind Timeline

The 1964 baseball season was both celebratory — and disappointing — for the New York Mets. The season began with the excitement and hope of a new ballpark in Flushing Meadows, but the season ended much like the first two in franchise history (53-109).

January 3-4

Mets officially leave Polo Grounds
The Mets officially move their baseball and office equipment out of the Polo Grounds.

January 6

Mets sell first tickets to Shea Stadium opener
The New York Mets open ticket offices for advance ticket sale for the 1964 season at Shea Stadium. The New York Times reported, “Although it produced no overwhelming crush, the opening did result in an encouraging turnout. Surprisingly so considering that the Mets do not open their home season in the Stadium until April 17 when they play the Pittsburgh Pirates.

April 16

Shea Stadium christened
Holy Water from the Gowanus Canal, which passes near Ebbets Field, the Dodgers' old home, and Holy Water from the Harlem River where it flows past the Polo Grounds, the former longtime ballpark of the Giants and the Mets' home for the past two seasons is used to christened Shea Stadium. The ballpark's namesake, Bill Shea, credited with bringing the National League back to New York, pours the water from two bottles, blessing the Flushing Meadow structure on the eve of its debut.

April 17

Mets open Shea Stadium
After spending the first two years of their existence at the Polo Grounds, the Mets play their first game at Shea Stadium in front of 50,312 fans in Queens. The Amazins' drop the stadium opener to Pittsburgh, 4-3, with Willie Stargell hitting the first homer in the Flushing facility.

April 19

Mets win first game at Shea
The Mets record their first win at Shea Stadium as Al Jackson shuts out the Pittsburgh Pirates, 6-0.

May 6

Mets host first night game at Shea
The Mets host their first night game at Shea Stadium against the Cincinnati Reds. Larry MacPhail, Franklin D. Roosevelt Jr. and Mets Board Chairman M. Donald Grant flip the switch on the new lights. The Mets fall to the Reds, 12-4.

May 31

Mets play 32 innings in doubleheader
Doubleheader vs. Giants ends with 8-6 SF win in the nightcap, in 23 innings. A few thousand from packed house of 57,037 are left at the finish, eating giveaway hot dog rolls with the concession stands long since closed.

May 31

Mets record first triple play in franchise history
The Mets execute an unusual two-man 6-6-3 triple play in the top of the 14th frame of the team's 23-inning marathon 8-6 loss to the Giants when shortstop Roy McMillan snares Orlando Cepeda's line drive headed for center field for the first out, tags second base to double off Jesus Alou for the second out, and then throws to first baseman Ed Kranepool to catch Willie Mays off first base for the final out. The play is the team's second triple-killing in the franchise's brief history, having pulled one off against Los Angeles in 1962, the team's inaugural season.

June 21

Bunning no hits Mets on Father's Day
On Father's Day, Phillies pitcher Jim Bunning becomes the first modern pitcher to toss a no-hitter in both leagues when he throws a perfect game to beat the Mets, 6-0.

July 7

Shea Stadium hosts All-Star Game
Shea Stadium plays host to the 1964 All-Star Game. It was the first (and only) midsummer classic played at the ballpark. Mets second baseman Ron Hunt makes franchise history as the first Mets starter in an All-Stare Game. He goes 1-for-3. The National League wins 7-4 on Johnny Callison's dramatic three-run walk-off home run.

August 5

Stengel, Dark rumors fly
Wire service reports claim Casey Stengel will be fired and replaced by San Francisco Giants manager, Alvin Dark. The Mets denied the rumors.

November 17

Berra signs two-year deal with the Mets
Yogi Berra signs a two-year contract with the Mets as a player-coach, earning $35,000 per season. Berra collects two hits in nine at-bats before retiring as a player.

November 23

Mets purchase Spahn
The Mets purchase Warren Spahn from the Braves. Spahn pitches one-half season for the Mets, recording a 4-12 record in twenty appearances before he was traded to the San Francisco Giants.

Read about the Mets as we dig deeper into memorable moments in franchise history, including games, player profiles and the record books.