April 2, 2003: Floyd and Cedeno Slug Mets Past Cubs

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Date: April 2, 2003
Mets starter: Al Leiter
Mets: 4
Cubs: 1
Winning pitcher: Al Leiter
Key player(s): Roger Cedeno, Cliff Floyd
Key play: Cedeno’s and Floyd’s home runs

The Mets faced the Cubs on a Wednesday night at Shea Stadium. The teams played the second game of the regular season in front of 20,594 fans on hand. Cliff Floyd and Roger Cedeno hit home runs to propel the Mets to a 4-1 win over Chicago.

With one out in the top of the first, Alex Gonzalez hit a double against Mets’ starter Al Leiter. Sammy Sosa drew a walk and Moises Alou singled to drive home Gonzalez. Leiter got Eric Karros to hit a ground ball to shortstop Rey Sanchez for a double play that ended the inning and Roberto Alomar doubled against the Cubs’ Matt Clement with one out in the bottom half. Floyd followed with a home run to give the Mets a 2-1 lead and Mo Vaughn flied out to right fielder Sosa. Ty Wigginton singled and advanced to third base on a pair of wild pitches. Jeromy Burnitz reached on a third strike error by catcher Damian Miller that allowed Wigginton to score the Mets’ third run. Burnitz went to second on Clement’s third wild pitch and a walk to Vance Wilson ensued. Clement then fanned Sanchez for the inning’s final out.

Leiter set down the side in order in the top of the second. With one out in the bottom of the inning, Cedeno homered for the Mets’ fourth run of the game. Alomar singled and went to second base on Floyd’s ground out to first baseman Karros. Vaughn was given an intentional walk and Wigginton flied out to Sosa to end the inning. Leiter pitched a perfect top of the third. Clement retired the Mets 1-2-3 in the bottom half and Leiter shut down the Cubs in the top of the fourth. Chicago reliever Mark Guthrie then struck out all three Mets batters in the bottom of the inning.

Leiter and the Cubs’ Joe Borowski each hurled scoreless fifth and sixth innings. Karros singled against Mets’ reliever David Weathers to begin the top of the seventh. Mark Bellhorn grounded out to second baseman Alomar and a fly ball by Ramon Martinez was caught by left fielder Floyd. Weathers struck out Miller to finish off the inning. Borowski pitched a perfect bottom half and the Mets’ Mike Stanton retired the Cubs in order in the top of the eighth. Chicago reliever Kyle Farnworth then shut down the Mets in the bottom of the inning.

Mets’ reliever Armando Benitez struck out Sosa to start the top of the ninth. Alou hit a double and Karros grounded out to third baseman Wigginton. Benitez then got Bellhorn to pop out to Wigginton and end the game. The Mets had their first victory of the year.