April 6, 1999: Thirteen Hits Club Marlins

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Date: April 6, 1999
Mets starter: Rick Reed
Mets: 12
Marlins: 3
Winning pitcher: Rick Reed
Key player(s): Rickey Henderson, Rey Ordonez, Mike Piazza
Key play: Henderson’s double, Ordonez’s single, Piazza’s home run

The Mets faced the Marlins on a Tuesday night in Florida. The teams played the second of three games in a season-opening series. The Mets collected thirteen hits in a 12-3 win.

Edgardo Alfonzo doubled against Marlins’ starter Livan Hernandez with one out in the top of the first inning. John Olerud singled to score Alfonzo with the first run of the game. Mike Piazza grounded to third baseman Kevin Orie for an inning-ending double play and the Mets’ Rick Reed pitched a perfect bottom half. Bobby Bonilla drew a walk to open the top of the second. Robin Ventura flied out to left fielder Preston Wilson and a walk to Brian McRae ensued. Rey Ordonez hit a single to drive home Bonilla and advanced to second base on Reed’s sacrifice bunt. Rickey Henderson doubled to plate both McRae and Ordonez for a 4-0 Mets lead. Henderson stole third and came home with the fifth New York run on catcher Jorge Fabregas’s error. Alfonzo walked and Hernandez fanned Olerud to close out the inning. Reed then struck out the side in order in the bottom half.

After scoreless third and fourth innings, Alfonzo hit a one-out double against Hernandez in the top of the fifth. Olerud lined out to Wilson and a two-run homer by Piazza increased the Mets’ lead to 7-0. Florida reliever Dennis Springer threw a called third strike past Bonilla for the inning’s final out and Todd Dunwoody doubled to open the bottom half. Wilson drew a walk and Orie hit a double play ground ball to first baseman Olerud. Fabregas singled to bring home Dunwoody with the Marlins’ first run. Reed then got pinch-hitter Craig Counsell to ground out to second baseman Alfonzo and finish off the inning.

Ventura hit a double against Fish reliever Kirt Ojala to begin the top of the sixth. McRae tripled to score Ventura and came home on Ordonez’s sacrifice fly to extend the Mets’ lead to 9-1. Reed popped out to first baseman Derrek Lee and a walk to Henderson followed. Ojala struck out Alfonzo to end the inning and Luis Castillo got a bunt single to begin the bottom half. Alex Gonzalez hit a force play grounder to shortstop Ordonez and a pop-up by Mark Kotsay was caught by third baseman Ventura. Lee doubled to send Gonzalez to third. Reed then fanned Dunwoody for the third out of the inning.

Olerud drew a leadoff walk in the top of the seventh. Piazza singled and Bonilla hit a single to load the bases. Ventura singled to score Olerud and a sacrifice fly by pinch-hitter Jermaine Allensworth brought home Piazza for an 11-1 Mets lead. Ojala retired Ordonez on a fly ball to right fielder Kotsay and fanned pinch-hitter Todd Pratt to close out the inning. Mets’ reliever Allen Watson then hurled a scoreless bottom half.

Despite singles by Roger Cedeno and Watson, Florida reliever Braden Looper shut down the Mets in the top of the eighth. Watson pitched a perfect bottom of the inning and Allensworth drew a one-out walk in the top of the ninth. Luis Lopez walked and Pratt reached on shortstop Gonzalez’s error to load the bases. Cedeno grounded out to Gonzalez to drive home Allensworth and lengthen the Mets’ lead to 12-1. Looper then retired Alfonzo on a line drive to Gonzalez that ended the inning.

Pinch-hitter Dave Berg hit a double to lead off the bottom of the ninth. Wilson slugged a two-run homer and Orie flied out to right fielder Allensworth. Guillermo Garcia was retired on a line drive to left fielder Mike Kinkade. Pinch-hitter Tim Hyers doubled and Castillo drew a walk. Watson then got Gonzalez to hit a force play grounder to shortstop Lopez for the game’s final out. The Mets had a victory with a solid hitting attack.