April 24, 1998: Two Runs in 8th Jolt Reds

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Date: April 24, 1998
Mets starter: Bobby Jones
Mets: 3
Reds: 2
Winning pitcher: Bobby Jones
Key player(s): Bobby Jones, Jim Tatum, Edgardo Alfonzo, Butch Huskey
Key play: Tatum’s sacrifice fly, Alfonzo’s run-scoring double, Huskey’s RBI

The Mets faced the Reds on a Friday night at Shea Stadium. The teams played a two-hour and fifty-minute game. The Mets scored twice in the eighth inning for a 3-2 win over Cincinnati.

Bobby Jones and the Reds’ Mike Remlinger each started the game with three scoreless innings pitched. Jones recorded a strikeout and two ground outs in each inning while Remlinger gave up a single to Bernard Gilkey and retired all other Mets batters. Bobby set down the side on three consecutive infield grounders in the top of the fourth. Edgardo Alfonzo got a one-out double in the bottom half. Gilkey drew a walk and Butch Huskey singled to load the bases. Jim Tatum followed with a sacrifice fly to bring home Alfonzo for a 1-0 Mets lead. Remlinger then threw a called third strike past Brian McRae to close out the inning.

Ed Taubensee doubled to begin the top of the fifth. Taubensee advanced to third base on Dmitri Young’s ground out to first baseman Tatum and scored on a single by Bret Boone. Reggie Sanders singled to send Boone to third base and went to second on a throw. With Jon Nunnally at bat, Sanders came home on a wild pitch for a 2-1 Cincinnati lead. Nunnally fouled out to third baseman Alfonzo and a line drive by Remlinger was caught by Edgardo to end the inning. Remlinger then hurled a perfect bottom half.

With one out in the top of the sixth, Willie Greene singled and stole second base. Barry Larkin hit a ground ball on which Jones threw to Alfonzo for an out at third on pinch-runner Pokey Reese. Taubensee drew a walk and Young walked to load the bases. Jones retired Boone on a fly ball to right fielder Huskey to finish off the inning and Remlinger surrendered just a walk to Alfonzo in the bottom half. Remlinger hit a single with two outs in the top of the seventh. With Chris Stynes at the plate, Remlinger was caught stealing for the inning’s third out. Remlinger then set down the Mets in order in the bottom half.

Jones retired the Reds 1-2-3 in the top of the eighth. Tim Spehr drew a walk against Remlinger to begin the bottom of the inning. Pinch-hitter John Olerud was retired on a fly ball to left fielder Stynes. Pinch-hitter Rich Becker singled against Cincinnati reliever Jeff Shaw to advance Spehr to third base. Alfonzo hit a double to bring home Spehr with the tying run and send Becker to third. Gilkey was given an intentional walk and Huskey hit a force play grounder to shortstop Larkin that drove home Becker for a one-run Mets lead. Shaw then got pinch-hitter Matt Franco to ground out to second baseman Boone and end the inning.

Mets’ reliever John Franco retired Taubensee on a pop-up to shortstop Luis Lopez to start the top of the ninth. Young lined out to center fielder McRae. John Franco then threw a called third strike past Boone for the final out of the game. The Mets had a victory with a late comeback.