Pitcher Steve Dillon‘s major league career included just three appearances – one in 1963 and two in 1964.
His final appearance was Dillon’s most memorable – on May 6, 1964, he pitched the final two innings of the first night game at Shea Stadium.
After pitching a perfect eighth inning in which Dillon got future Hall-of-Famer Pete Rose to ground out to shortstop, the Mets’ hurler surrendered a home run to Vada Pinson to start the ninth.
When Dillon returned to the dugout at the end of the inning, Mets manager Casey Stengel told him, “‘Listen, if another player hits a home run off that scoreboard and breaks it, you’re paying for it!'” Dillon recalled to Daily News writer Nicholas Hirshon in 2009.
The Mets invited Dillon and Bill Wakefield (who started the first night game at Shea) to throw out a ceremonial first pitch during Citi Field’s inaugural season. Wakefield’s daughter filmed the occasion and posted the video to YouTube.
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I obtained Steve Dillon’s autograph by writing to him earlier this month. I got my card back in a few days.
Despite Dillon’s brief major league career, he does appear on several baseball cards. He shares a high-number series rookie card with Ron Locke in the 1964 Topps set, and he has three post-career issues: the 1991 Wiz Mets set, the 1976 SSPC 1963 Mets set, and the 1975 1963 Mets Morey photos set.