July 19, 1997: Reed and Gilkey Slug Reds

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Date: July 19, 1997
Mets starter: Rick Reed
Mets: 5
Reds: 3
Winning pitcher: Rick Reed
Key player(s): Rick Reed, Bernard Gilkey
Key play: Reed’s home run in 5th, Gilkey’s home run in 8th

The Mets faced the Reds on a Saturday afternoon at Shea Stadium. The teams played the second part of a four-game series. Home runs by Rick Reed and Bernard Gilkey led to a 5-3 Mets win over Cincinnati.

Mets’ starting pitcher Reed set down the Reds in order in the top of the first inning. Cincinnati’s Pete Schourek shut down the Mets in the bottom half. In the top of the second, Willie Greene and Hal Morris led off with back-to-back singles. Joe Oliver hit into a force play and Eric Owens singled to drive home Greene. Pokey Reese flied out to center fielder Carl Everett and a single by Schourek scored Oliver with Owens advancing to third base. Owens was caught stealing home for the third out. The Mets were then held without a run by Schourek in the bottom of the inning.

After a scoreless third, Reed shut down Cincinnati on two hits in the top of the fourth inning. Schourek fanned all three Mets batters in the bottom half. Rick retired the side in order in the top of the fifth and Rey Ordonez singled for the Mets’ first hit with two outs in the bottom of the inning. Reed hit a home run to tie the game at 2-2. Schourek then got Everett on a fly ball to left fielder Deion Sanders for the third out.

Reed and Reds’ reliever Brett Tomko each pitched scoreless ball in the sixth and seventh innings. Rick set down all three Cincinnati hitters in the top of the eighth. Ordonez singled to lead off the bottom of the inning. With two outs, Edgardo Alfonzo hit a single on which Ordonez went to third. Gilkey followed with a three-run homer that gave the Mets a 5-2 lead. Tomko then retired Butch Huskey on an infield ground ball to end the inning.

To begin the top of the ninth, Mets’ reliever Greg McMichael got Jon Nunnally to fly out to right fielder Everett (who had shifted from center the previous inning.) Greene homered for the third Cincinnati run. Morris hit a line drive that was caught by left fielder Gilkey. McMichael then retired pinch-hitter Ed Taubensee on a grounder to second baseman Carlos Baerga for the final out of the game. The Mets had their second straight victory of the weekend series.