August 19, 1978: Four-Run 6th Overtakes Dodgers
|Date: August 19, 1978|
|Mets starter: Mike Bruhert|
|Winning pitcher: Dale Murray|
|Key player(s): John Stearns, Steve Henderson, Bruce Boisclair|
|Key play: Garvey’s and Russell’s errors, Henderson’s single|
The Mets faced the Dodgers on a Saturday afternoon at Shea Stadium. The teams played the second of three games in a weekend series. The Mets broke a tie with four runs in the sixth inning and defeated Los Angeles, 8-4.
Dave Lopes drew a walk against Mets’ starter Mike Bruhert to lead off the top of the first. Lopes stole second base and Bill North went down on strikes. Reggie Smith drew a walk and Steve Garvey hit a force play ground ball to second baseman Doug Flynn that advanced Lopes to third. With Rick Monday at bat, Lopes scored on a wild pitch for the first run of the game. Bruhert struck out Monday to end the inning. Dodgers’ starter Don Sutton then pitched a perfect bottom half.
Bruhert held the Dodgers to a double by Joe Ferguson in the top of the second. With one out in the bottom of the inning, John Stearns drew a walk and moved to third base on Bruce Boisclair’s single to right field. Lenny Randle grounded out to second baseman Lopes to drive home Stearns and send Boisclair to second. An ensuing single by Flynn scored Boisclair and gave the Mets a 2-1 lead. Sutton then fanned Bruhert to close out the inning.
Smith drew a two-out walk in the top of the third. A wild pitch moved Smith to second base and Garvey followed with a single. On the hit, Smith was out at home via a throw by right fielder Boisclair to catcher Stearns to end the inning and Sutton set down the Mets in order in the bottom half. Leading off the top of the fourth, Monday singled to right field. Lee Lacy flied out to Boisclair and a homer by Ferguson put Los Angeles ahead by a run. Bruhert then retired Enzo Hernandez on a fly ball to Boisclair and struck out Sutton to end the inning.
Willie Montanez singled to open the bottom of the fourth. Stearns was hit by a pitch and Boisclair flied out to center fielder North to advance Montanez to third base. Randle hit a ground ball to first baseman Garvey for the inning’s second out. On the play, Garvey made an errant throw that allowed Montanez to score the tying run. Flynn was walked intentionally and pinch-hitter Ed Kranepool was struck out to finish off the inning. Mets’ reliever Dale Murray retired all three Los Angeles batters on infield grounders in the top of the fifth. Sutton then hurled a scoreless bottom half.
The Dodgers failed to score after loading the bases against Murray in the top of the sixth inning. To begin the bottom half, Stearns hit a double and Boisclair drew a walk. Randle flied out to North to send Stearns to third and Flynn walked to load the bases. Pinch-hitter Ron Hodges reached on shortstop Bill Russell’s error that allowed Stearns to come home and put the Mets ahead. Sutton issued a walk to Lee Mazzilli that forced home Boisclair with another run and Los Angeles reliever Charlie Hough struck out Tim Foli. Steve Henderson followed with a single to drive home Flynn and pinch-runner Sergio Ferrer, extending the Mets’ lead to 7-3. Montanez grounded back to Hough to end the inning. Mets’ reliever Skip Lockwood then pitched a scoreless top of the seventh.
Stearns drew a walk to lead off the bottom of the seventh inning. John stole second base and moved to third on Boisclair’s fly out to North. Randle hit a single to bring home Stearns with the Mets’ eighth run and advanced to second on North’s error. Hough caught Randle with a pickoff throw to Lopes and fanned Flynn for the third out. Lockwood shut down the Dodgers in the top of the eighth. Los Angeles reliever Rick Rhoden then retired the side in order in the bottom half.
Lockwood struck out pinch-hitter Vic Davalillo to start the top of the ninth inning. Lopes hit a single and stole second base. North drew a walk and an ensuing wild pitch advanced the runners to second and third. Smith followed with a sacrifice fly to drive home Lopes and send North to third. Lockwood then retired Garvey on a fly ball to left fielder Henderson to end the game. The Mets had a victory that stopped a three-game losing streak.