April 16, 2001: Mets Stifle Expos Rally

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Date: April 16, 2001
Mets starter: Rick Reed
Mets: 4
Expos: 3
Winning pitcher: Rick Reed
Key player(s): Mike Piazza, Todd Zeile, Rey Ordonez
Key play: Piazza’s double, Zeile’s and Ordonez’s singles

The Mets faced the Expos on a Monday night at Shea Stadium. The teams played the opener of a three-game series. The Mets held off a Montreal comeback effort and came away with a 4-3 win.

Mets’ starter Rick Reed pitched a perfect top of the first inning. Darryl Hamilton doubled against the Expos’ Mike Thurman to open the bottom half. Edgardo Alfonzo was retired on a line drive to second baseman Jose Vidro. Mike Piazza followed with a double to score Hamilton for a 1-0 Mets lead. Robin Ventura drew a walk and Todd Zeile grounded out to shortstop Orlando Cabrera. Thurman then struck out Jay Payton to end the inning.

Reed hurled a scoreless top of the second. Thurman gave up only a double to Rey Ordonez in the bottom half and Reed set down the side in order in the top of the third. Piazza got a one-out single in the bottom of the inning. Ventura drew a walk and Zeile singled to drive home Piazza. Payton was hit by a pitch to load the bases and Tsuyoshi Shinjo was struck out. Ordonez hit a single to bring home Ventura and Zeile, increasing the Mets’ lead to 4-0. Thurman then fanned Reed for the inning’s third out.

Fernando Tatis doubled to lead off the top of the fourth. Vladimir Guerrero hit a single to send Tatis to third base, but was out via a relay throw by first baseman Zeile to second baseman Alfonzo. Lee Stevens grounded out to Alfonzo to score Tatis and cut the Mets’ lead to 4-1. Milton Bradley was called out on strikes to finish off the inning and was ejected from the game by umpire Terry Craft. Thurman and Montreal reliever Mike Johnson then combined for a scoreless bottom half.

Peter Bergeron got a leadoff single in the top of the fifth. Michael Barrett singled and pinch-hitter Fernando Seguignol took a called third strike. Cabrera doubled to drive home Bergeron and advance Barrett to third base. Vidro grounded out to Alfonzo to score Barrett and reduce the Mets’ lead to one run. Reed threw a called third strike past Tatis to close out the inning. Expos’ reliever Masato Yoshii then hurled a perfect bottom half.

Reed yielded just a single to Geoff Blum in the top of the sixth. Yoshii and Montreal reliever Scott Stewart combined for a scoreless bottom of the inning and Reed retired the side 1-2-3 in the top of the seventh. The Expos’ Guillermo Mota set down the Mets on three consecutive infield ground balls in the bottom half and New York’s John Franco hurled a perfect top of the eighth. Mota then retired all three batters on infield grounders once again in the bottom of the inning.

Mets’ reliever Armando Benitez retired Stevens on a fly ball to right fielder Shinjo to start the top of the ninth. Blum went down on strikes and Bergeron drew a walk. Benitez then got Barrett to fly out to left fielder Hamilton and bring the game to an end. The Mets had stopped an Expos rally attempt and emerged with a victory.