June 20, 1990: Four Runs in 1st Deck Cards

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Date: June 20, 1990
Mets starter: Sid Fernandez
Mets: 6
Cardinals: 3
Winning pitcher: Sid Fernandez
Key player(s): Darryl Strawberry, Kevin McReynolds
Key play: Strawberry's singles, McReynolds' home run

The Mets faced the Cardinals on a Wednesday afternoon at Shea Stadium. The teams played the latter half of a two-game series. The Mets scored four runs in the first inning and defeated St. Louis, 6-3.

Mets' starter Sid Fernandez shut down the Redbirds in the top of the first. Against the Cards' Bryn Smith, Dave Magadan reached second base on center fielder Willie McGee's error with one out in the bottom half. Gregg Jefferies got an infield single and Darryl Strawberry singled to drive home Magadan. Kevin McReynolds followed with a three-run homer for a 4-0 Mets lead. Smith then retired both Daryl Boston and Mackey Sasser on infield ground balls for the inning's final outs.

After scoreless second and third innings, Fernandez gave up only a single to Pedro Guerrero in the top of the fourth. Boston hit a one-out double in the bottom half. Sasser reached on shortstop Jose Oquendo's error to advance Boston to third base. Kevin Elster hit a force play grounder to Oquendo that scored Boston and increased the Mets' lead to 5-0. Smith then struck out Fernandez to finish off the inning.

The Cardinals failed to score after loading the bases in the top of the fifth. St. Louis reliever Ricky Horton yielded just a single to Jefferies in the bottom half and Milt Thompson tripled with two outs in the top of the sixth. Rex Hudler hit a double that plated Thompson with the Redbirds' first run of the game. Fernandez retired pinch-hitter Craig Wilson on an inning-ending grounder to shortstop Elster. The Cards' Ken Dayley then set down the side in order in the bottom half.

Vince Coleman singled against Mets' reliever Alejandro Pena to begin the top of the seventh. Coleman stole second base and Oquendo popped out to Elster. McGee hit a single on which Elster made an error that allowed Coleman to come home. With Guerrero at bat, McGee stole second and went to third on catcher Sasser's error. Guerrero followed with a sacrifice fly to score McGee and reduce the Mets' lead to 5-3. Pena threw a called third strike past Terry Pendleton to close out the inning. Dayley then retired all three batters in the bottom half.

Mets' reliever John Franco gave up only a single to Thompson in the top of the eighth. Magadan got a single against the Cardinals' Frank DiPino to lead off the bottom of the inning. Jefferies singled and Strawberry hit a single to bring home Magadan with the Mets' sixth run. St. Louis reliever Tom Niedenfuer retired McReynolds on a fly ball to McGee after which Jefferies went to third base. With Franco at the plate, Strawberry was caught stealing on catcher Todd Zeile's throw to second baseman Hudler. Niedenfuer then struck out Franco to end the inning.

A single by Coleman opened the top of the ninth. Coleman stole second base and Oquendo flied out to right fielder Strawberry. Franco recorded consecutive strikeouts of McGee and Guerrero to bring the game to an end. The Mets had a solid victory.