April 22, 1987: Mets Survive Pirates Rally

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Date: April 22, 1987
Mets starter: Ron Darling
Mets: 8
Pirates: 7
Winning pitcher: Ron Darling
Key player(s): Tim Teufel, Kevin McReynolds, Mookie Wilson
Key play: Teufel’s single and double, Wilson’s and McReynolds’ home runs

The Mets faced the Pirates on a Wednesday night in Pittsburgh. The teams played the finale of a three-game series. The Mets held off a Bucs comeback effort and came away with an 8-7 win.

After a scoreless first inning, Dave Magadan drew a one out walk against Pirates’ starter Bob Patterson in the top of the second. Rafael Santana walked and Ron Darling’s sacrifice bunt advanced the runners to second and third base. Mookie Wilson drew a walk to load the bases and moved to third on Tim Teufel’s single that brought home Magadan and Santana. Keith Hernandez walk to reload the bases and Patterson retired Gary Carter on an inning-ending fly ball to left fielder R. J. Reynolds. Mets’ starter Darling then gave up only a single to Mike LaValliere in the bottom half.

Patterson shut down the Mets in the top of the third. Darling retired the side in order in the bottom of the inning and Wilson singled to open the top of the fourth. Teufel hit a double to drive home Wilson and went to third base on Hernandez’s ground out to first baseman Sid Bream. Carter followed with a sacrifice fly to score Teufel and increase the Mets’ lead to 4-0. Patterson fanned Darryl Strawberry for the inning’s third out and Jim Morrison hit a solo home run with two outs in the bottom half. Darling then got Reynolds to ground out to first baseman Hernandez and finish off the inning.

Kevin McReynolds singled against Patterson to lead off the top of the fifth. Magadan went down on strikes and Santana grounded out to third baseman Morrison. Darling hit a double to drive home McReynolds. Against Pittsburgh reliever Barry Jones, Wilson connected for a two-run homer and a 7-1 Mets lead. Jones fanned Teufel to close out the inning. Darling then set down the side in order in the bottom half.

Bucs’ reliever John Smiley hurled a perfect top of the sixth. Darling yielded just a single to Barry Bonds in the bottom of the inning and Smiley gave up only a double to McReynolds in the top of the seventh. Morrison got a leadoff single against Darling in the bottom half. Reynolds hit a force play ground ball to second baseman Teufel and came around to score on a double by LaValliere. Pinch-hitter Bobby Bonilla doubled to drive home LaValliere and a strikeout of pinch-hitter John Cangelosi ensued. Bonds followed with a triple against Mets’ reliever Gene Walter that plated Bonilla and cut the New York lead to 7-4. Walter then struck out Andy Van Slyke to end the inning.

Pittsburgh reliever Logan Easley pitched a scoreless top of the eighth. With one out in the bottom half, Bream slugged a solo home run against Walter. Morrison hit a double against Mets’ reliever David Cone, who followed up by throwing a called third strike past Reynolds and retiring LaValliere on an inning-ending grounder to second baseman Wally Backman. To begin the top of the ninth, McReynolds homered for an 8-5 Mets lead. Easley then set down the next three batters to finish off the inning.

Pinch-hitter Bill Almon drew a one-out walk against Cone in the bottom of the ninth. Bonds followed with a homer to reduce the Mets’ lead to one run. Against New York reliever Jesse Orosco, pinch-hitter Mike Diaz hit a double. Johnny Ray went down on strikes and Orosco retired Bream on a ground ball to third baseman Magadan for the game’s final out. The Mets had held on for a victory.