August 25, 1985: Gooden's 20th Win of Season

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Date: August 25, 1985
Mets starter: Dwight Gooden
Mets: 9
Padres: 3
Winning pitcher: Dwight Gooden
Key player(s): Dwight Gooden, Darryl Strawberry, Roger McDowell
Key play: Strawberry's double, McReynolds' double play, Strawberry's homer

The Mets and Padres played the finale of a four-game series on a damp Sunday afternoon at Shea Stadium. Dwight Gooden took the mound in quest of his twentieth win of the season. On the strength of Darryl Strawberry's four RBIs and quality relief from Roger McDowell, the Mets came out with a 9-3 win and No. 20 for "Doctor K".

The Mets got off to a three-run lead in the first inning. Strawberry delivered a two-out double off San Diego starter Eric Show to score Len Dykstra and Keith Hernandez. Darryl then scored on Howard Johnson's single.

The Padres scored twice in the third to cut the Met lead to one run. In the fourth, Gooden faced Kevin McReynolds after a leadoff walk to Carmelo Martinez. Doc got McReynolds to hit into a double play, ending a San Diego scoring chance.

Strawberry hit a solo home run off Show in the bottom of the fifth inning. The Padres got the run back when Steve Garvey doubled and later scored in the sixth. It was a 4-3 Met lead as Gooden's day ended.

McDowell took over for Doc to start the top of the seventh. Roger stopped the Padres cold with three innings of one-hit relief. McDowell retired the last eight San Diego hitters of the game (seven of them on ground balls) for his twelfth save of the year.

Meanwhile, the Mets kept hitting. Facing Padre reliever Tim Stoddard, George Foster hit a bases loaded single for two runs and Rusty Staub added a run-scoring single of his own. McDowell himself joined the hit parade with a double to score pinch runner Larry Bowa from first base, capping a four-run seventh. The Mets led, 8-3.

Strawberry singled home Hernandez in the eighth to conclude the scoring. When McReynolds grounded out in the ninth, the game was over. Gooden, still 83 days away from his 21st birthday, became Major League Baseball's youngest 20-game winner ever.