August 21, 1983: Mets Finish Off Sweep of Giants

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Date: August 21, 1983
Mets starter: Mike Torrez
Mets: 4
Giants: 3
Winning pitcher: Mike Torrez
Key player(s): George Foster, Jose Oquendo, Rusty Staub, Jesse Orosco
Key play: Foster’s and Oquendo’s homers, Staub’s double, Orosco’s strikeout of Rabb

The Mets faced the Giants on a Sunday afternoon in San Francisco. The teams played the finale of a three-game weekend series. The Mets survived a late Giants comeback attempt to complete a series sweep with a 4-3 win.

From the first inning to the fifth, Mike Torrez and San Francisco’s Atlee Hammaker allowed a combined total of three hits in pitching scoreless ball. Keith Hernandez flied out to center fielder Chili Davis to lead off the top of the sixth. George Foster followed with a homer for the first run of the game. Hammaker retired Darryl Strawberry and Brian Giles on infield ground balls to end the inning. Jack Clark got a one-out single in the bottom half. Clark stole second base and Darrell Evans flied out to center fielder Mark Bradley. Torrez then got Jeffrey Leonard on an inning-ending grounder to third baseman Hubie Brooks.

Giants’ reliever Gary Lavelle struck out Junior Ortiz to open the top of the seventh inning. Jose Oquendo hit his first major league home run for a 2-0 Mets lead. Lavelle got Torrez to ground out to first baseman Dave Bergman and threw a called third strike past Bradley for the third out. Bob Brenly and pinch-hitter Max Venable drew back-to-back walks with two outs in the bottom half. Torrez then got Johnnie LeMaster on a called third strike for the inning’s final out.

San Francisco’s Jim Barr got Brooks to fly out to right fielder Clark to begin the top of the eighth inning. Hernandez grounded out to third baseman Evans. Foster reached first base on an error by Evans and advanced to third on Strawberry’s single to center field. Pinch-hitter Rusty Staub doubled to drive home Foster and Strawberry, lengthening the Mets’ lead to four runs. Barr retired Ortiz on a ground ball to second baseman Joel Youngblood to end the inning. Torrez then set down the Giants in order in the bottom half.

Oquendo singled to open the top of the ninth. With Torrez at bat, Jose was caught stealing on a throw by catcher Brenly to shortstop LeMaster. Torrez went down on strikes and Bradley hit a single to right field. Bradley stole second base and Brooks drew a walk. Hernandez got an infield single to load the bases. Barr then retired Foster on a fly ball to left fielder Leonard for the third out of the inning.

Leonard led off the bottom of the ninth with a double to right field. Davis grounded out to shortstop Oquendo and a walk to Youngblood followed. Brenly singled to score Leonard for the Giants’ first run of the game. Pinch-hitter Steve Nicosia hit a single to drive home Youngblood and send Brenly to third base. Mets’ reliever Jesse Orosco came in to pitch and got Lemaster to hit a force play grounder to second baseman Bob Bailor. On the play, Brenly came home to cut the Mets’ lead to one run. Orosco then threw a called third strike past pinch-hitter John Rabb to end the game. The Mets had a sweep of the three-game series.

Notes

  • Staub’s two-run double gave him 18 pinch-hit RBIs on the season, breaking the Mets’ team record of 17 set by Ed Kranepool in 1978.