April 30, 1985: Gooden Four-Hits Astros

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Date: April 30, 1985
Mets starter: Dwight Gooden
Mets: 4
Astros: 1
Winning pitcher: Dwight Gooden
Key player(s): Dwight Gooden, George Foster, Danny Heep
Key play: Mets’ singles in 7th and 8th

The Mets faced the Astros on a Tuesday night at Shea Stadium. The teams played the opener of a series in front of 31,558 fans on hand. Dwight Gooden pitched a four-hitter in a 4-1 Mets win over Houston.

With two outs in the top of the first inning, Denny Walling homered for a 1-0 Astros lead. Gooden retired Jose Cruz on a ground ball to shortstop Rafael Santana for the third out and Houston’s Joe Niekro hurled a scoreless bottom half. Jerry Mumphrey singled to lead off the top of the second. Gooden struck out Phil Garner and got Alan Ashby to hit a grounder to first baseman Keith Hernandez for an inning-ending double play. Niekro then shut down the Mets in the bottom half.

Craig Reynolds got a leadoff single in the top of the third inning. Niekro reached on an error by Gooden. With Bill Doran at bat, Reynolds was out at second base on catcher Gary Carter’s pickoff throw to Santana. Doran hit a force play grounder to Hernandez and was caught stealing on another Carter-to-Santana throw for the third out of the inning. Niekro then surrendered only a walk to Gooden in the bottom half.

Gooden and Niekro each pitched scoreless ball from the fourth inning to the sixth. Dwight set down all nine Astros batters while Niekro gave up a just a single to Danny Heep for the Mets’ first hit of the game. Kevin Bass singled for the fourth Houston hit to begin the top of the seventh. Gooden caught Bass with a pickoff throw to Hernandez and retired Walling on a fly ball to center fielder Darryl Strawberry. Dwight then struck out Cruz for the inning’s final out.

Hernandez singled against Niekro to open the bottom of the seventh. Clint Hurdle hit a single and Strawberry flied out to center fielder Mumphrey. George Foster singled to drive home Hernandez with the tying run. Heep followed with a single against Astros’ reliever Frank DiPino that scored Hurdle for a 2-1 Mets lead. DiPino then got Santana on a grounder to second baseman Doran for a double play to end the inning.

Gooden pitched a scoreless top of the eighth and drew a walk to lead off the bottom half. Wally Backman grounded out to third baseman Garner and a strikeout of pinch-hitter Ray Knight ensued. Hernandez was given an intentional walk and Hurdle singled to drive home Gooden. Strawberry was walked intentionally to load the bases and John Christensen singled to score Hernandez with the Mets’ fourth run. DiPino was then replaced on the mound by Houston reliever Jeff Calhoun, who retired Heep on a fly ball to left fielder Cruz to close out the inning.

Reynolds fouled out to catcher Hurdle to begin the top of the ninth. Pinch-hitter Ty Gainey was struck out and Doran drew a walk. Gooden then got Bass to fly out to Strawberry and end the game. The Mets had a victory on Dwight’s four-hitter.