July 23, 1998: Franco's Single in 9th Gives Mets Sweep
|Date: July 23, 1998|
|Mets starter: Al Leiter|
|Winning pitcher: Greg McMichael|
|Key player(s): Matt Franco, Butch Huskey|
|Key play: Franco's run-scoring single|
The Mets played the Brewers on a Thursday afternoon at County Stadium. After winning the first two games of the series, the Mets looked for a three-game sweep. Matt Franco's single in the ninth inning brought home the run that gave the Mets a 6-5 victory over Milwaukee.
In the top of the second inning, the Mets got two runs against Brewers' starter Steve Woodard. Carlos Baerga got a one-out single to bring home Butch Huskey and came around to score on a double by Rey Ordonez. The Mets added another run in the third when Edgardo Alfonzo crossed the plate on Todd Hundley's ground out. Meanwhile, Al Leiter held Milwaukee to one hit while pitching shutout ball through the end of the third inning.
In the bottom of the fourth, Jeromy Burnitz and Marc Newfield hit back-to-back doubles off Leiter for the Brewers' first run of the game. Woodard and Leiter each pitched a perfect fifth inning and Brian McRae doubled to score Ordonez for a 4-1 Met lead in the top of the sixth. Leiter then shut down Milwaukee with one hit in the bottom of the sixth inning, striking out Newfield to end it.
In the top of the seventh, John Olerud singled off Brewers' reliever Alberto Reyes. Mike Piazza followed with another single and Hundley flied out. Huskey delivered a single to bring home Olerud with the Mets' fifth run of the game. Reyes then got Baerga to hit into an inning-ending double play.
Jose Valentin got a one-out double off Leiter in the bottom of the seventh inning. Following a ground out, Marquis Grissom singled to score Valentin and went to third base on Mark Loretta's single that followed. Grissom came home on a wild pitch by Mets' reliever Greg McMichael to cut the New York lead to 5-3. A single by Jeff Cirillo brought home Loretta from second for another Milwaukee run. After John Jaha's single, Burnitz delivered yet another single to score Cirillo from third and tie the game. McMichael then got Newfield for a force play grounder to end the inning.
Brewers' reliever Mike Myers held the Mets scoreless on one hit in the top of the eighth inning. In the bottom half, McMichael retired Milwaukee in order. The Mets then put runners on first and second base with one out in the ninth as Myers was replaced on the mound by reliever Chad Fox.
Pinch-hitter Matt Franco came up to bat against Fox. Matt hit a single to bring home Piazza from second and put the Mets ahead by a run. Fox then retired the next two batters to end the inning.
In the bottom of the ninth inning, John Franco set down the Brewers 1-2-3 to end the game. The Mets had come up with a victory after letting an earlier lead get away. The win gave them a sweep of the three games in Milwaukee.