May 1, 1992: Boston's Homer Negates Braves Rally

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Date: May 1, 1992
Mets starter: Anthony Young
Mets: 8
Braves: 7
Winning pitcher: Tim Burke
Key player(s): Charlie O'Brien, Daryl Boston
Key play: O’Brien’s and Boston’s home runs

The Mets faced the Braves on a Friday night in Atlanta. The teams played the opener of a three-game series. After a Braves comeback that cancelled out a seven-run Mets lead, Daryl Boston hit a home run for an 8-7 New York win.

Anthony Young and the Braves’ Steve Avery each started the game with three scoreless innings pitched. Eddie Murray and Dave Magadan got back-to-back singles with one out in the top of the fourth. Charlie O'Brien singled to load the bases and Dick Schofield reached on a fielder’s choice ground ball to drive home Murray. On the play, Magadan scored and O’Brien went to third base via an error by second baseman Mark Lemke. Young got a bunt single and moved to second as Avery made an error that allowed both O’Brien and Schofield to come home. Boston singled to send Young to third and was caught in a rundown on Avery’s pickoff throw and tagged out by first baseman Sid Bream. Willie Randolph hit a single to score Young and increase the Mets’ lead to 5-0. Atlanta reliever Kent Mercker retired Bobby Bonilla on a fly ball to center fielder Deion Sanders to end the inning. Young then pitched a scoreless bottom half.

Howard Johnson hit a leadoff double in the top of the fifth. Johnson advanced to third base on a wild pitch and Murray grounded out to Lemke. Magadan was called out on strikes and O’Brien hit a two-run homer for a 7-0 Mets lead. Mercker retired Schofield on an inning-ending grounder to shortstop Rafael Belliard. Young then set down the side in order in the bottom half.

Braves’ reliever Ben Rivera hurled a perfect top of the sixth. With one out in the bottom of the inning, Terry Pendleton homered for the first Atlanta run of the game. Ron Gant grounded out to shortstop Schofield and a single by David Justice ensued. Bream flied out to center fielder Johnson to end the inning and Bonilla got an infield single to open the top of the seventh. Johnson went down on strikes and Murray hit a force play grounder to Lemke. Magadan singled and Rivera threw a called third strike past O’Brien to finish off the inning.

To begin the bottom of the seventh, Damon Berryhill singled and Lemke reached on an error by Young. Pinch-hitter Jeff Blauser followed with a double to drive home both Berryhill and Lemke. Against Mets’ reliever Paul Gibson, pinch-hitter Brian Hunter doubled to score Blauser. Sanders drew a walk and New York’s Jeff Innis got Pendleton on a ground ball to second baseman Randolph for a double play. Gant hit a double to plate Hunter and reduce the Mets’ lead to 7-5. Justice followed with a home run that tied the game at seven apiece. Bream walked and was replaced on the bases by pinch-runner Otis Nixon. With Berryhill at bat, Nixon got caught by catcher O’Brien’s throw and was tagged by first baseman Murray for the inning’s final out.

With two outs in the top of the eighth, Boston homered against Braves’ reliever Juan Berenguer to put the Mets back in front by a run. Randolph flied out to right fielder Justice to end the inning and New York’s Tim Burke retired the side in order in the bottom half. Berenguer hurled a scoreless top of the ninth and Mets’ reliever John Franco struck out Hunter to start the bottom of the inning. Sanders was retired on a grounder back to Franco. John then got Pendleton to fly out to Johnson and bring the game to an end. The Mets had emerged with a victory after seeing a big lead evaporate.