Sunday, November 1, 2009
#125) GARY GENTRY
Gary Gentry was selected by the New York Mets in the third round of the free agent draft on June 6. 1967. He made his major league debut on April 10, 1969 with a victory against the Montreal Expos at Shea Stadium. Gentry continued to play a crucial part of that magical season. He threw a complete-game four-hit shutout against the St. Louis Cardinals on September 24th to clinch the division and put the Mets into the playoffs for the first time in franchise history. As the starting pitcher of Game 3 he had the honor of throwing the first World Series' pitch at Shea Stadium. Gary held the Baltimore Orioles scoreless for 6-2/3 innings before handing the ball over to a fellow rookie fireballer, Nolan Ryan. The club would win that game and the next two to make Gary Gentry a member of the 1969 World Champion Miracle Mets. "You looked around and you saw the team and there was never a thought that we couldn't win." Gentry recalled at a tribute to the team at Citi Field in 2009.
An elbow injury caused Gary to lose some of his effectiveness. He was traded by the Mets with Danny Frisella to the Atlanta Braves for Felix Millan and George Stone on November 1, 1972. Only to return to the organization when he was convinced to sign a minor league contract with the Mets on May 29, 1975. Gentry chose to retire about a month later on June 19th.
I purchased this signed index card from the legendary autograph guy, Jack Smalling and converted it into Gary Gentry's card in the set in January 2009. Jack's website is www.baseballaddresses.com