But I’m a Mets fan, so I’m more concerned with three games at the end of the 1970 season. The Cleveland Indians sold Chance’s contract to the New York Mets on Sept. 18th. New York trailed Pittsburgh by 2.5 games on that date, so I imagine the move was intended to help the team make one last push.
Chance made his Mets’ debut two days later, closing out a 9-5 loss to the Pirates at Shea Stadium. After Tug McGraw gave up a 10th inning homer to Willie Stargell to break the 5-5 tie, he face two more batters before exiting. Chance came in with a runner on second and one out, and intentionally walked Dave Cash to get to Gene Alley. That move backfired when Alley tripled (and later scored) to put the game out of reach.
Chance pitched a scoreless inning to earn a save against the Phillies on Sept. 22nd, but earned the loss in his final Mets appearance on Sept. 25th because he allowed the eventual winning run to reach base in an appearance that lasted just 1/3 of an inning.
The next spring the Mets traded Chance to the Detroit Tigers with pitcher Bill Denehy for pitcher Jerry Robertson, who never appeared in a major league game for New York. Chance retired after the 1971 season.
Despite his brief time in New York, Chance does appear in the 1971 Topps set as a Met. I opted to get his 1991 Wiz Mets card signed instead because the 1971 Topps set already has a facsimile signature printed on the card. I was able to get Chance’s autograph through a private signing conducted by Chris Potter Sports recently.
Chris Potter Sports announced a new round of private signings, including a number of former Mets. Items are due by Aug. 15 and will be shipped back by Oct. 10.
Ralph Kiner, Rusty Staub, Mike Torrez, Mickey Lolich, Dean Chance, Bret Saberhagen, Kevin Collins, Jim Gosger, Frank Tanana, John Franco, Jay Hook and Joe Christopher are among the names that might be of interest to Mets fans. Prices range from $8-$50, depending on the player and the item to be signed.
I know I need Chance for my Mets all-time roster project, but I have to figure out if I need any of the others for side projects.