July 28, 1999: Seven Runs in 8th Put Away Pirates
|Date: July 28, 1999|
|Mets starter: Kenny Rogers|
|Winning pitcher: Dennis Cook|
|Key player(s): Edgardo Alfonzo, Benny Agbayani, Rey Ordonez|
|Key play: Alfonzo’s homer and singles, Agbayani’s double, Ordonez’s two-run single|
The Mets faced the Pirates on a Wedenesday afternoon at Shea Stadium. The teams played the finale of a three-game series. The Mets scored seven runs in the eighth inning for a 9-2 win over Pittsburgh.
Mets’ starter Kenny Rogers pitched a scoreless top of the first inning. With one out in the bottom half, Edgardo Alfonzo homered off the Pirates’ Todd Ritchie for the first run of the game. Ritchie struck out John Olerud and gave up a home run to Robin Ventura for a 2-0 Mets lead. Benny Agbayani grounded out to shortstop Abraham Nunez to end the inning. Rogers and Ritchie then hurled scoreless ball from the second inning to the fifth.
Rogers walked Adrian Brown to open the top of the sixth inning. Nunez grounded out to second baseman Alfonzo and an errant pickoff throw by Rogers advanced Brown from second to third base. Brian Giles grounded out to Alfonzo to drive home Brown with the Bucs’ first run. Rogers retired Kevin Young on an inning-ending grounder to third baseman Ventura. Ritchie shut down the Mets in the bottom half and reliever Turk Wendell pitched a scoreless top of the seventh. Ritchie then held the Mets without a run in the bottom of the inning.
Mets’ reliever Dennis Cook threw a called third strike past pinch-hitter Brant Brown to open the top of the eighth. Adrian Brown popped out to first baseman Olerud and a pinch-hit homer by John Wehner tied the game at 2-2. Giles lined out to Olerud for the third out and Alfonzo singled off Pittsburgh’s Marc Wilkins to start the bottom half. Against reliever Jason Christiansen, Olerud singled to center field and Ventura popped out to first baseman Young. Agbayani doubled to score Alfonzo and put the Mets back in front. Pinch-hitter Rickey Henderson was walked intentionally to load the bases and Todd Pratt was hit by a pitch to force home Olerud. Christiansen was then replaced on the mound by Pirates’ reliever Greg Hansell.
Rey Ordonez greeted Hansell with a single that brought home Agbayani and Henderson for a 6-2 Mets lead. Melvin Mora walked to load the bases and a single by Roger Cedeno scored Pratt. On Cedeno’s hit, Ordonez was out at home on a throw by right fielder Adrian Brown to catcher Joe Oliver. Alfonzo singled to drive home Mora and Cedeno with the Mets’ sixth and seventh runs of the inning. Bucs’ reliever Scott Sauerbeck then retired Olerud on an inning-ending ground ball to second baseman Warren Morris.
Mets’ reliever Pat Mahomes got Young on a fly ball to right fielder Cedeno to start the top of the ninth. Ed Sprague hit a grounder to Olerud for the second out of the inning. Morris then flied out to Cedeno to end the game. The Mets had a victory to close out the series.