Famous World Series moment, 25 years later

Bill Buckner and Mookie Wilson on "The Early Show" Tuesday CBS

Bill Buckner and Mookie Wilson are forever linked in baseball history - due to one unforgettable moment.

On Oct. 25, 1986, the New York Mets had just tied game six of the World Series with an improbable tenth-inning comeback against the Boston Red Sox.

"There was seismic activity in Shea Stadium; the place was rocking and rolling," says Ed Randall, host of the radio show "Talking Baseball."

With two outs, the winning run was on second base. Wilson was at bat.

He hit a grounder down the first base line - that somehow eluded Buckner.

The Mets' Ray Knight scored the winning run, and the Mets took game seven to become champions.

For the Red Sox, the miscue was just another heartbreak in what at the time was a decades-old string of them.

And, Randall observes, "For Bill Buckner, this was really the scarlet "A." And it got so untenable for him, unfortunately, that he had to eventually move away from the Boston area." It doomed his legacy to the one errant play.

But Buckner, a star in his own right over a long career, has made a comeback of sorts, even poking fun at himself on an recent episode of "Curb Your Enthusiasm."

Still, notes Randall, the play is an indelible part of baseball history. "It was," he says, "just extraordinary circumstances in an extraordinary postseason. Possibly the best postseason ever."

Today, Buckner and Wilson are friends, and have teamed together to work for charity.

Buckner said on "The Early Show" Tuesday that, "It really wasn't so much the fans in Boston" who hounded him after THE play "as it was the media. And the media kind of egged them on a little bit. But they're a lot of good fans, they're a lot of good people.

"Unfortunately, it was the perfect storm, you know, with the Red Sox not having won in all those years and playing, you know, a New York team.

"It's crazy the way that, you know, 25 years later, people are still talking about it. And, you know, it was not the seventh game of the World Series. It was only the sixth. The game was tied. We might not have even won. But for some reason, it stuck. Hey, it is what it is."

"A lot of things have happened," Buckner continued, "but hey -- it was just a baseball game. I mean, the reality -- it wasn't life or death. You can choose to look at life whatever way you want. I had a very fortunate -- am still very fortunate, have a great family, God was very good to me, I had a great career, so hey, life's good."

Wilson told co-anchors Chris Wragge and Mookie Wilson, "It's been crazy answering the same questions, you know, (such as), 'Would you have beaten him to the bag if he had caught the ball?" Wilson was known for his tremendous running speed.

"I don't know. I really don't know," Wilson said. "We've talked about it a couple of times. You'd be surprised how often we do talk about that moment. And the same questions over and over again.

"And so, 25 years doesn't seem like 25 years for me. I guess it's a little different for Bill, but we have really come to accept our place in baseball history ... (even though) we've done a little bit more than that."

Wilson and Buckner were to appear at a charity event Tuesday night benefiting the Ronald McDonald House and put together by Grandstand Sports.

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