On October 8, 1973, at Shea Stadium the New York Mets defeat the Cincinnati Reds, 9-2, behind 2 homeruns from Rusty Staub to give the Mets a 2-1 series advantage. The Mets scored early and often in Game 3, racing out to a 6–0 lead after just two innings. Rusty Staub hit his second homer of the series in the first inning, and the Mets erupted for five more runs in the second, highlighted by yet another homer from Staub, a three-run shot. The Reds scored their runs in the third on a Denis Menke homer and an RBI single by Joe Morgan off Mets starting pitcher Jerry Koosman.

During pregame warm-ups, Harrelson was confronted by Reds second baseman Joe Morgan, who told Harrelson that 1973 batting champion and eventual NL MVP, Pete Rose, didn’t appreciate Harrelson’s Game 2 post-game disparaging comments, saying Harrelson was finding more fault with the Reds rather than giving Matlack credit.

In the top of the fifth with Pete Rose on first, Morgan hit a double-play ball to Mets first baseman John Milner, Rose slid hard into Bud Harrelson as he tried unsuccessfully to break up the double play. Harrelson said something to Rose and they began to fight at second as both teams poured onto the field. The order was eventually restored and neither Rose nor Harrelson were ejected. But when Rose returned to his left-field position in the bottom of the fifth, fans at Shea Stadium began showering him with debris. Reds manager Sparky Anderson then pulled his team off the field.

When National League president Chub Feeney threatened the Mets with a forfeit. New York sends an emissary, consisting of Willie Mays, Yogi Berra, Cleon Jones, Tom Seaver, and Rusty Staub, out to left field to quell the crowd’s unrest. The game was completed without any more incidents from either team. 

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League Championship Series Game 3 Played on Monday, October 8, 1973 (D) at Shea Stadium

CIN N    0  0  2    0  0  0    0  0  0  -   2  8  1
NY  N    1  5  1    2  0  0    0  0  x  -   9 11  1
BOX+PBP
WP: Koosman (1-0)
LP: Grimsley (0-1)
HR: Menke (1), Staub 2 (3)

Play by Play

REDS 1ST: Rose flied out to center; Morgan popped to first in
foul territory; Perez struck out; 0 R, 0 H, 0 E, 0 LOB.  Reds 0,
Mets 0.

METS 1ST: Garrett was called out on strikes; Millan flied out to
right; Staub homered; Jones singled to right; Milner struck out;
1 R, 2 H, 0 E, 1 LOB.  Reds 0, Mets 1.

REDS 2ND: Bench was called out on strikes; Kosco flied out to
left; Armbrister struck out; 0 R, 0 H, 0 E, 0 LOB.  Reds 0, Mets
1.

METS 2ND: Grote walked; Hahn singled to right [Grote to second];
Harrelson lined to right; Koosman singled to center [Grote to
third, Hahn to second]; Garrett hit a sacrifice fly to center
[Grote scored, Hahn to third]; Millan singled to right [Hahn
scored, Koosman to second]; HALL REPLACED GRIMSLEY (PITCHING);
Staub homered [Koosman scored, Millan scored]; Jones walked;
Milner struck out; 5 R, 4 H, 0 E, 1 LOB.  Reds 0, Mets 6.

REDS 3RD: Menke homered; Chaney popped to second; STAHL BATTED
FOR HALL; Stahl singled to center; Rose singled to left [Stahl
to second]; Morgan singled to right [Stahl scored, Rose to
second]; Perez flied out to center [Rose to third]; Bench forced
Morgan (shortstop to second); 2 R, 4 H, 0 E, 2 LOB.  Reds 2,
Mets 6.

METS 3RD: TOMLIN REPLACED STAHL (PITCHING); Grote singled to
center; Hahn grounded out (shortstop to first) [Grote to
second]; Harrelson flied out to center; Koosman singled to right
[Grote scored]; Garrett struck out; 1 R, 2 H, 0 E, 1 LOB.  Reds
2, Mets 7.

REDS 4TH: Kosco struck out; Armbrister singled to left; Menke
struck out; Chaney popped to shortstop; 0 R, 1 H, 0 E, 1 LOB. 
Reds 2, Mets 7.

METS 4TH: Millan walked; Staub flied out to right; Jones doubled
to right [Millan scored (error by Kosco)]; Milner singled to
right [Jones scored]; Grote flied out to left; Hahn singled to
center [Milner to second]; NELSON REPLACED TOMLIN (PITCHING);
Harrelson flied out to left; 2 R, 3 H, 1 E, 2 LOB.  Reds 2, Mets
9.

REDS 5TH: Nelson struck out; Rose singled to center; Morgan
grounded into a double play (first to shortstop to first) [Rose
out at second]; Pete Rose slid hard into Bud Harrelson; fight
ensued but no ejections; 0 R, 1 H, 0 E, 0 LOB.  Reds 2, Mets
9.

METS 5TH: Koosman grounded out (second to first); Garrett flied
out to left; Millan walked; Staub grounded out (second to
first); 0 R, 0 H, 0 E, 1 LOB.  Reds 2, Mets 9.

REDS 6TH: Perez popped to first; Bench flied out to center;
Kosco reached on an error by Garrett; Armbrister was called out
on strikes; 0 R, 0 H, 1 E, 1 LOB.  Reds 2, Mets 9.

METS 6TH: Jones grounded out (second to first); Milner grounded
out (second to first); Grote flied out to center; 0 R, 0 H, 0 E,
0 LOB.  Reds 2, Mets 9.

REDS 7TH: Menke grounded out (shortstop to first); Chaney flied
out to center; KING BATTED FOR NELSON; King singled to left;
Rose flied out to center; 0 R, 1 H, 0 E, 1 LOB.  Reds 2, Mets 9.

METS 7TH: BORBON REPLACED KING (PITCHING); Hahn grounded out
(pitcher to first); Harrelson struck out; Koosman grounded out
(second to first); 0 R, 0 H, 0 E, 0 LOB.  Reds 2, Mets 9.

REDS 8TH: Morgan was called out on strikes; Perez flied out to
center; Bench doubled to left; Kosco lined to third; 0 R, 1 H, 0
E, 1 LOB.  Reds 2, Mets 9.

METS 8TH: Garrett struck out; Millan flied out to right; Staub
grounded out (third to first); 0 R, 0 H, 0 E, 0 LOB.  Reds 2,
Mets 9.

REDS 9TH: Armbrister struck out; Menke flied out to center;
GAGLIANO BATTED FOR CHANEY; Gagliano flied out to center; 0 R, 0
H, 0 E, 0 LOB.  Reds 2, Mets 9.

Final Totals      R   H   E  LOB
 Reds             2   8   1    6
 Mets             9  11   1    6