By: Stache Staff

28 Years Ago Today: Ray Knight Punches Eric Davis; Mets & Reds Brawl


In a year full of brawls and wins, one of the most famous that included both for the 1986 Mets happened 28 years ago today in Cincinnati.

With the game in extra innings, Eric Davis’ slide into third base and pop up off the bag way a little too close to Ray Knight and Knight, the former boxer, let Davis know he wasn’t too happy about it.

It led to this….


A great description of what happened in this game comes from our friends over at Amazin Avenue

In Mets Fast Forward style, let’s move ahead to the top of the ninth, since the first eight frames of this affair were really just a prologue for the incredibly weird baseball to follow. The Reds led 3-1 with two outs, but Lenny Dykstra coaxed a walk to keep Amazin’ hopes alive. Tim Teufel followed with a double to that put the tying runs into scoring position for Keith Hernandez. Playing the percentages, Reds’ player-manager Pete Rose brought on lefty John Franco, who made his skipper look like a genius by getting Mex to loft a lazy fly that right fielder Dave Parker, a three-time Gold Glove winner, let clank off his mitt. Dykstra and Teufel came around to score and the Mets were up off the canvas.

Now let’s jump ahead again. With one out in the bottom of the tenth, Pete Rose pinch hit himself for Franco and made himself look like a genius by singling off Jesse Orosco. Rose also opted to focus on managerial duties for the rest of the night, bringing in Eric Davis to run. Davis stole second, then third with a slide that was bit too hard for Ray Knight’s liking. An amateur boxer, Knight made his displeasure known by punching Davis in the face. Benches emptied and, when peace was finally restored, Knight and Kevin Mitchell were heading for the showers at the umps’ discretion. Davey Johnson, already shorthanded thanks to Straw’s ejection and his other substitutions, emptied his bench and bullpen, bringing Ed Hearn into catch, which pushed Gary Carter to third, and, in most unorthodox move of all, sent Jesse Orosco to right field so Roger McDowell could take his place on the mound.

For the next three innings, Johnson switched back and forth between his lefty and righty closers, depending on the matchup. In the 14th, Howard Johnson finally broke the stalemate with a three-run homer and the Mets had a hard-fought 6-3 win.

The Mets of 1986 would also fight the Dodgers, Braves and Pirates that season as well, hammering home the point that not only did other teams hate them, the Mets didn’t mind it one bit.

We should also remind you that a potential movie/documentary about the 1986 Mets is being made and needs your help raising money, which you can do by going to the 1986 Mets Kickstarter and donating to help out the cause.

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