April 21, 1982: Five Runs in 8th Stun Cubs

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Date: April 21, 1982
Mets starter: Pat Zachry
Mets: 7
Cubs: 4
Winning pitcher: Craig Swan
Key player(s): Dave Kingman, Hubie Brooks, Ron Hodges
Key play: Kingman’s single, Moreland’s passed ball, Hodges’ single

The Mets faced the Cubs on a Wednesday night at Shea Stadium. The teams played a two-hour and fifty-nine-minute game. The Mets scored five runs in the eighth inning for a 7-4 win over Chicago.

With two outs in the top of the first, Bill Buckner hit a solo home run against Mets’ starter Pat Zachry. Leon Durham drew a walk and stole second base. Keith Moreland singled to score Durham with the Cubs’ second run and advanced to second on a throw to the plate. Zachry retired Dan Briggs on a pop-up to catcher Ron Hodges for the third out. Chicago’s Dan Larson then pitched a perfect bottom half.

After scoreless second and third innings, Zachry shut down the Cubs in the top of the fourth. George Foster got a one-out single in the bottom half. Dave Kingman hit a double on which left fielder Briggs made an error that allowed Foster to come home. Joel Youngblood flied out to center fielder Gary Woods and a single by Hubie Brooks plated Kingman to tie the game at 2-2. Brooks stole second base and Larson struck out Hodges to finish off the inning.

Larson and Bump Wills got back-to-back singles with one out in the top of the fifth. Ryne Sandberg was retired on a fly ball to center fielder Mookie Wilson, after which Larson advanced to third base. Buckner hit a single to score Larson and put the Cubs ahead, 3-2. Durham flied out to Wilson to end the inning and Larson surrendered only a walk to Ron Gardenhire in the bottom half. Zachry hurled a scoreless top of the sixth. Chicago reliever Lee Smith then set down the side in order in the bottom of the inning.

With one out in the top of the seventh, Wills drew a walk against Zachry. Wills stole second base and Sandberg grounded out to shortstop Gardenhire. Buckner hit a single to drive home Wills for a 4-2 Cubs lead. Mets’ reliever Jesse Orosco walked Durham and retired Moreland on an inning-ending pop-up to third baseman Brooks. Smith then gave up only a single to Brooks in the bottom half.

Mets’ reliever Craig Swan pitched a scoreless top of the eighth. Wilson singled against Smith to begin the bottom of the inning. Wally Backman hit a force play grounder to shortstop Larry Bowa and a walk to Foster ensued. Kingman hit a single against Chicago reliever Bill Campbell to drive home Backman. Youngblood singled to load the bases and Brooks reached on Bowa’s error to score Foster with the tying run. With Hodges at bat, a passed ball by catcher Moreland brought home Kingman and gave the Mets a 5-4 lead. Hodges followed with a single that plated Youngblood and Brooks with the sixth and seventh New York runs. Tom Veryzer was retired on a fly ball to center fielder Ty Waller. Campbell then got pinch-hitter Mike Jorgensen to ground out to first baseman Buckner and finish off the inning.

Mets’ reliever Neil Allen threw a called third strike past pinch-hitter Bob Molinaro to start the top of the ninth. Wills flied out to left fielder Ellis Valentine and consecutive singles by Sandberg and Buckner followed. Allen then retired Waller on a foul pop-up to first baseman Jorgensen to end the game. The Mets had a come-from-behind victory.