August 6, 1986: Mets Defeat Cubs in 12 Innings

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Date: August 6, 1986
Mets starter: Dwight Gooden
Mets: 7
Cubs: 6
Winning pitcher: Roger McDowell
Key player(s): Lenny Dykstra, Keith Hernandez, Mookie Wilson
Key play: Hernandez’s home run, Dykstra’s and Wilson’s two-run singles

The Mets faced the Cubs in a doubleheader on a Wednesday afternoon. The teams went into extra innings in the opener of the twinbill at Wrigley Field. In the 12th, the Mets scored twice and held on for a 7-6 win over Chicago.

After a rain delay of forty-eight minutes, Lenny Dykstra singled against Cubs’ starter Ed Lynch to lead off the top of the first inning. Wally Backman hit a ground ball to second baseman Ryne Sandberg for a double play and Keith Hernandez homered to give the Mets a one-run lead. Gary Carter flied out to center fielder Bob Dernier to end the inning. For the Mets, Dwight Gooden retired the side in order in the bottom half.

Howard Johnson reached on an error by third baseman Ron Cey with two outs in the top of the second. Rafael Santana flied out to right fielder Keith Moreland to finish off the inning and Gooden pitched a scoreless bottom half. Lynch set down the Mets on three straight infield grounders in the top of the third and Dernier drew a two-out walk in the bottom of the inning. Dernier stole second base and advanced to third on an error by catcher Carter. Sandberg followed with a home run to put the Cubs ahead, 2-1. Gooden then struck out Gary Matthews to end the inning.

Lynch gave up only a single to Hernandez in the top of the fourth. To begin the bottom half, Moreland singled and moved to third base on an ensuing single by Leon Durham. A sacrifice fly by Jody Davis plated Moreland with the third Chicago run of the game. With Cey at bat, Gooden caught Davis with a pickoff throw to first baseman Hernandez. Dwight then fanned Cey for the inning’s final out.

Johnson singled with one out in the top of the fifth. Santana and Gooden followed with singles that loaded the bases. Dykstra singled to drive home Johnson and Santana with tie tying runs. On his own hit, Lenny moved to second base as Gooden went to third via a throw to the plate. Backman hit a sacrifice fly to bring home Gooden for a 4-3 Mets lead. Lynch got Hernandez on an inning-ending ground ball to first baseman Durham. Gooden then retired the Cubs in order in the bottom half.

Gooden and Lynch each pitched scoreless and hitless ball in the sixth and seventh innings. Dykstra hit a single to begin the top of the eighth. Backman’s sacrifice bunt moved Dykstra to second base. Hernandez was given an intentional walk and Carter singled to load the bases. Lynch was replaced on the mound by Chicago reliever Ray Fontenot, who got pinch-hitter Mookie Wilson to hit a force play grounder to shortstop Shawon Dunston that brought home Dykstra with the Mets’ fifth run. With Kevin Mitchell at the plate against the Cubs’ Dave Gumpert, Wilson stole second. Gumpert struck out Mitchell to end the inning and Terry Francona got a one-out single in the bottom half. Pinch-hitter Jerry Mumphrey singled and Sandberg flied out to center fielder Dykstra. Gooden then retired Matthews on a fly ball to Dykstra for the third out of the inning.

Gumpert and Chicago reliever Frank DiPino combined for a scoreless top of the ninth. Moreland flied out to Dykstra to lead off the bottom half. Thad Bosley hit a single and Davis homered to tie the game at 5-5. Cey was retired on a ground ball to third baseman Ray Knight. Gooden then fanned Dunston to close out the inning and send the game onward.

Hernandez and Carter drew back-to-back walks with one out in the top of the 10th. DiPino retired Wilson on a pop-up to Dunston and retired Mitchell on an inning-ending grounder back to the mound. Sandberg got a two-out single against Mets’ reliever Jesse Orosco in the bottom half. Pinch-hitter Chris Speier drew a walk and Orosco got Moreland on a ground ball to Knight that ended the inning. With one out in the top of the 11th, Knight singled against Cubs’ reliever George Frazier. Pinch-hitter George Foster went down on strikes and Dykstra singled to send Knight to third base. Frazier got Backman to line out to Dunston and finish off the inning. Mets’ reliever Roger McDowell then pitched a perfect bottom half.

Hernandez drew a leadoff walk against Frazier in the top of the 12th. Carter followed with a single on which he moved to second base (and Hernandez to third) via an error by Dunston. Wilson singled against Chicago reliever Lee Smith to drive home Hernandez and Carter, giving the Mets a 7-5 lead. Wilson stole second and Mitchell was struck out. Johnson was given an intentional walk. Smith then got Knight to hit a grounder to Dunston for a double play that closed out the inning.

Dunston grounded out to shortstop Johnson to open the bottom of the 12th. Francona hit a double and scored the Cubs’ sixth run on a single by Mumphrey. Sandberg followed with a force play ground ball to Johnson. McDowell then retired pinch-hitter Manny Trillo on a fly ball to Dykstra to end the game. The Mets had an extra-inning victory to start the doubleheader.


  • Foster’s strikeout in the 11th inning was his final appearance as a Met.