August 16, 1981: Two-Out Hits in 3rd Bury Phils

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Date: August 16, 1981
Mets starter: Pat Zachry
Mets: 5
Phillies: 2
Winning pitcher: Pat Zachry
Key player(s): Pat Zachry, Dave Kingman, Ellis Valentine
Key play: Kingman’s single, Valentine’s double

The Mets faced the Phillies on a Sunday afternoon at Shea Stadium. The teams played the finale of a three-game series. In the third inning, the Mets got a trio of run-scoring hits with two outs for four runs en route to a 5-2 win over Philadelphia.

After scoreless first and second innings, Mets’ starter Pat Zachry pitched a perfect top of the third. Zachry hit a single against the Phils’ Dick Ruthven to lead off the bottom half. Mookie Wilson went down on strikes and Frank Taveras singled to advance Zachry to second base. Pat moved to third on Hubie Brooks’ force play ground ball to first baseman Pete Rose and scored the game’s first run on Dave Kingman’s ensuing single. Ellis Valentine doubled to drive home Brooks and Kingman. Lee Mazzilli followed with a single to plate Valentine for a 4-0 Mets lead. After Mazzilli stole second, Ruthven got John Stearns on a fly ball to left fielder Gary Matthews for the inning’s final out.

Mike Schmidt hit a home run to begin the top of the fourth. Bake McBride reached on Zachry’s error and Garry Maddox was struck out. Larry Bowa hit a double to send McBride to third base and Bob Boone popped out to second baseman Doug Flynn. Zachry fanned Ruthven to end the inning. The Mets were then retired in order by Ruthven in the bottom half.

Rose got a leadoff single in the top of the fifth inning. On Manny Trillo’s ensuing single, right fielder Valentine threw to third baseman Brooks for an out on Rose. Matthews drew a walk and Schmidt followed with a force play grounder to Flynn. Zachry got McBride on a foul fly ball to left fielder Mazzilli to close out the inning. With one out in the bottom half, Brooks homered to increase the Mets’ lead to 5-1. Kingman drew a walk and Philadelphia reliever Dickie Noles got Valentine to hit a force play ground ball to third baseman Schmidt. Noles then retired Mazzilli on a fly ball to center fielder Maddox that ended the inning.

Zachry and Noles each hurled a scoreless sixth. Mets’ reliever Dan Boitano and the Phillies’ Sparky Lyle each pitched scoreless ball in the seventh. Matthews began the top of the eighth with a single to right field. Schmidt grounded back to Boitano and a double by McBride brought home Matthews with the Phils’ second run. Boitano struck out Maddox and retired Bowa on an inning-ending fly ball to Valentine. Lyle then set down the Mets 1-2-3 in the bottom half.

Boone singled to lead off the top of the ninth inning. Neil Allen came in to pitch for the Mets and retired pinch-hitter Dick Davis on a fly ball to Valentine. Rose flied out to center fielder Wilson. Allen then got pinch-hitter Del Unser to hit as force play grounder to shortstop Taveras and end the game. The Mets had a victory to close out their first home series of the official second half of the season.