April 14, 1996: Mets Pound Rockies With Sixteen Hits

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Date: April 14, 1996
Mets starter: Pete Harnisch
Mets: 10
Rockies: 4
Winning pitcher: Pete Harnisch
Key player(s): Todd Hundley, Rey Ordonez, Jeff Kent
Key play: Hundley’s double in 1st, Ordonez’s triple in 2nd, Kent’s home run in 5th

The Mets faced the Rockies on a Sunday at Denver’s Coors Field. The teams concluded a series with a nationally televised night game. The Mets collected a total of sixteen hits in a 10-4 win over Colorado.

Lance Johnson singled against Rockies starter Kevin Ritz to begin the top of the first inning. With Bernard Gilkey at bat, Johnson was caught on Ritz’s pickoff throw to first baseman Andres Galarraga. Gilkey popped out to second baseman Jason Bates and a walk to Rico Brogna ensued. Butch Huskey doubled to advance Brogna to third base. Todd Hundley followed with a double that scored Brogna and Huskey for a two-run Mets lead. Ritz retired Jeff Kent on a line drive to Bates to close out the inning. Mets’ starter Pete Harnisch then set down all three Colorado batters in the bottom half.

Edgardo Alfonzo reached on an error by third baseman Vinny Castilla to open the top of the second. An ensuing triple by Rey Ordonez brought home Alfonzo with the third New York run. Ritz struck out Harnisch and set down Johnson and Gilkey on ground balls back to the mound for the inning’s final outs. Leading off the bottom half, Larry Walker hit a home run to cut the Mets’ lead to 3-1. Galarraga was called out on strikes and Castilla grounded out to third baseman Kent. Jeff Reed followed with a double to right field. Harnisch then got Bates on an inning-ending fly ball to center fielder Johnson.

Brogna got a leadoff single in the top of the third inning. Huskey flied out to right fielder Dante Bichette and a double by Hundley moved Brogna to third base. Kent hit a sacrifice fly to drive home Brogna. Ritz retired Alfonzo on a fly ball to center fielder Walker for the third out of the inning and took a called third strike to open the bottom half. Walt Weiss and Ellis Burks followed with back-to-back singles and a balk advanced the runners to second and third. Bichette grounded out to Kent to drive home Weiss and make the score 4-2. Harnisch then got Walker to pop out to second baseman Alfonzo and end the inning.

Ordonez singled to begin the top of the fourth. A sacrifice bunt by Harnisch advanced Ordonez to second base and Johnson drew a walk. Ritz threw a wild pitch to move the runners to second and third before getting Gilkey and Brogna on called third strikes to finish off the inning. Harnisch pitched a perfect bottom half and Huskey hit a single to open the top of the fifth. Hundley went down on strikes and Kent hit a two-run homer to extend the Mets’ lead to 6-2. Alfonzo grounded out to Bates and a single by Ordonez ensued. Ritz retired Harnisch on an inning-ending grounder back to the mound. Pete then shut down the Rockies in the bottom half.

Colorado reliever Lance Painter got Johnson to ground out to Bates to begin the top of the sixth inning. Gilkey homered for the Mets’ seventh run of the game. Brogna hit a double and Huskey went down on strikes. Painter threw a called third strike past Hundley to close out the inning. Walker was hit by a pitch leading off the bottom half. After moving to second base on a wild pitch, Walker advanced to third on Galarraga’s fly out to Johnson. Castilla was retired on a pop-up to Alfonzo. Harnisch then fanned Reed for the inning’s final out.

Kent hit a double to lead off the top of the seventh. Jeff advanced to third base on Alfonzo’s fly out to Bichette and scored on an ensuing infield single by Ordonez. Pinch-hitter Kevin Roberson doubled to drive home Ordonez. Roberson went to third on Johnson’s single (the Mets’ sixteenth hit) and scored the Mets’ tenth run on a sacrifice fly by Gilkey. Painter then got Brogna on an inning-ending ground ball to Galarraga.

Pinch-hitter John Vander Wal singled against Mets’ reliever Doug Henry with one out in the bottom of the seventh inning. Weiss hit a single to right field to send Vander Wal to third base. Burks and Bichette got consecutive singles to drive home Vander Wal and Weiss, respectively, for a pair of Rockie runs. Walker popped out to shortstop Ordonez. Henry then got Galarraga on a pop-up to Alfonzo to end the inning.

Colorado’s Mark Thompson shut down the Mets in the top of the eighth. Henry held the Mountain Men to a single by Bates in a scoreless bottom half. Thompson hurled a perfect top of the ninth and Weiss led off the bottom of the inning with a single to left field. Burks followed with a ground ball to Ordonez for a double play. Henry then retired Bichette on a fly ball to left fielder Gilkey to end the game. The Mets had a victory in the series finale.