June 22, 1999: Late Hitting Fillets the Fish
|Date: June 22, 1999|
|Mets starter: Masato Yoshii|
|Winning pitcher: Greg McMichael|
|Key player(s): Robin Ventura, Roger Cedeno, Rey Ordonez|
|Key play: Ventura’s three hits, Cedeno’s triple, Ordonez’s RBI singles|
The Mets faced the Marlins on a Tuesday night at Shea Stadium. The teams played the opener of a three-game series in front of 30,713 fans on hand. The Mets erupted for seven runs and nine hits in the seventh and eighth innings for an 8-2 win over Florida.
Masato Yoshii and the Marlins’ Dennis Springer each pitched a scoreless first inning. Preston Wilson opened the top of the second with a single to center field. Mark Kotsay popped out to third baseman Robin Ventura and a home run by Kevin Orie gave the Fish a 2-0 lead. Yoshii threw a called third strike past Jorge Fabregas and fanned Springer for the inning’s third out. Ventura homered with one out in the bottom half for the Mets’ first run of the game. Brian McRae drew a walk and Roger Cedeno hit a force play ground ball to second baseman Luis Castillo. A single by Rey Ordonez moved Cedeno to third base. Springer then retired Yoshii on a fly ball to center fielder Wilson to close out the inning.
Both Yoshii and Springer hurled scoreless ball from the third inning to the sixth. Masato surrendered three walks a single by Danny Bautista while the Mets were limited to a trio of singles against Springer. Kotsay popped out to Ventura to begin the top of the seventh. Orie hit a double and a walk to Fabregas followed. With Greg McMichael on the mound for the Mets, the runners advanced to second and third base on a sacrifice bunt by Springer. McMichael then retired Castillo on a fly ball to center fielder McRae to end the inning.
Ventura led off the bottom of the seventh with a double to left field. McRae popped out to shortstop Alex Gonzalez and a triple by Cedeno drove home Ventura to tie the game. Antonio Alfonseca came in to pitch for Florida and gave up a single to Ordonez that plated Cedeno for a 3-2 Mets lead. Ordonez moved to third base on pinch-hitter Matt Franco’s single and a pop-up by Rickey Henderson was caught by first baseman Tim Hyers. Edgardo Alfonzo singled to score Ordonez with the fourth New York run. Marlins’ reliever Vic Darensbourg then got John Olerud to fly out to left fielder Bautista and finish off the inning.
Mets’ reliever Armando Benitez hurled a perfect top of the eighth. Mike Piazza hit a home run to begin the bottom half. Ventura singled and went to third base on a double by McRae. Cedeno was walked intentionally to load the bases and Darensbourg was replaced on the mound by Florida’s Braden Looper. Ordonez greeted Looper with a single that scored Ventura and McRae, increasing the Mets’ lead to 7-2. Cedeno, who advanced to third on Rey’s hit, came home with the eighth New York run on Benitez’s ground out to third baseman Orie. Henderson was retired on a pop-up to Hyers. Looper then got Alfonzo to hit a ground ball to Gonzalez for the inning’s final out.
Wilson went down on strikes to lead off the top of the ninth. Benitez followed up by throwing a called third strike past Kotsay. Armando then fanned Orie to bring the game to an end. The Mets had a victory with a burst of late-inning offense.