From the perspective of the history of baseball in the 20th century the storyline in the bottom of the ninth inning of Game 6 of the 1986 World Series was that the Boston Red Sox were a strike away from winning their first World Championship since 1918. However, in terms of the 1986 baseball season the story was that the New York Mets, having won 108 games during the regular season, were one strike away from blowing the series having been big favorites. But the Mets started this one behind, when Bruce Hurst pitched eight scoreless innings in the opener and Boston won 1-0. Then there was the anticlimactic meeting in Game 2 between 1985 National League Cy Young winner Dwight Gooden and 1986 American League Cy Young winner Roger Clemens, where neither starter lasted five innings and it was Boston's bullpen that game out ahead 9-3. So New York dropped the first two games at home and would never have the series lead until Game 7.
The Mets returned the favor in Boston by winning the first two games behind Bob Ojeda and Ron Darling before Hurst won his second game and gave Gooden his second loss to return to Queens up 3 games to 2. Clemens and Ojeda both pitched well in Game 6, which was deadlocked 3-3 after nine innings. Then came what is probably the most famous inning in World Series history. The Red Sox scored two runs in the top of the 10th on a Dave Henderson homerun and a Marty Barrett double. Calvin Schiraldi came out of the bullpen and retired the first two Mets in the bottom of the 9th. Then came three singles, a wild pitch, and the most famous error in World Series history to set up Game 7 (Hack Wilson losing the ball in the sun in 1929 was not an error and when Fred Snodgrass dropped the ball in Game 8 in 1912 was not recorded for posterity on videotape).
Two points to be made regarding this particular moment of baseball immortality. First, even if Bill Buckner (or Dave Stapleton) had fielded the ball cleanly the game was still tied and Boston was in a complete state of shock. You would have to like the momentum the Mets have going at that point (although I believe that Buckner was the next batter due up for the Sox). Second, just as was the case the last time the Red Sox were involved in Game 6 heroics with Carlton Fisk's celebrated home run in 1975, a lot of people forget that Game 7 was pretty good too. The Red Sox recovered well enough to take a 3-0 lead after homer by Dwight Evans and Rich Gedman, the Mets came back--on Schiraldi no less--to win the game.
In 1986 we saw a World Series where the home team dropped the first four games and then did a complete reversal with last bats getting the final three games. True, the Red Sox always seem to manage to lose Game 7 of the World Series, but that simply makes it smart to just sweep their opponents like they did last year when they finally won it all in our lifetime (all of the mysteries of life should be that easy to solve). Yes, this 1986 World Series video is a joy for Mets fans, but the fact that at the time it was yet another painful reminder of that Curse thing is now starting to recede into the dim past along with people hitting .400 and the like. But for those of us who are neither Mets nor Red Sox fans (in the long run), this was a memorable Fall Classic and the second of three in a row in which the home team came back from down 3-2 to win.
"New York Mets: 1986 World Series Collector's Edition" is not a highlight video. It gives you the broadcasts of all seven games of the World Series, which is enough to get most Mets fans on board right there. But in addition to the entire series and a bunch of post-series extras there is also the sixth and final game of the 1986 National League Championship series where the Mets took 16 innings to beat the Houston Astros. Houston scored three runs off of Ojeda in the bottom of the 1st and the Mets waited until the top of the 9th to tie the score with three runs off of Bob Knepper. The Mets scored in the top of the 14th and the Astros answered in the bottom of the inning. Even when the Mets scored three runs in the 16th, the Astros scored twice to make it a one run differential. After the came Len Dykstra told reporters, "It's going to be very tough for the World Series to match this playoff." Boy, was he wrong.