May 25, 1994: Late Scoring Puts Away Pirates

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Date: May 25, 1994
Mets starter: Bret Saberhagen
Mets: 6
Pirates: 3
Winning pitcher: Bret Saberhagen
Key player(s): Kelly Stinnett, Jose Vizcaino, John Cangelosi
Key play: Stinnett’s double, Vizcaino’s single, Cangelosi’s throw

The Mets faced the Pirates on a Wednesday night in Pittsburgh. The teams played the second of three games in a series. The Mets scored five runs in the last three innings for a 6-3 win over the Bucs.

Joe Orsulak singled against Pirates’ starter Paul Wagner with two outs in the top of the first. Orsulak moved to second base on catcher Don Slaught’s passed ball and came around to score on a single by Bobby Bonilla. Jeff Kent grounded out to shortstop Jay Bell to end the inning and the Mets’ Bret Saberhagen pitched a perfect bottom half. Wagner gave up only a single to Kelly Stinnett in the top of the second and Dave Clark singled to open the bottom of the inning. On his own hit, Clark advanced to second via an error by second baseman Kent. Clark went to third on Orlando Merced’s single and scored the tying run as Slaught grounded to Kent for a double play. Tom Foley hit a single and Saberhagen retired Carlos Garcia on a fly ball to right fielder Orsulak that ended the inning.

Saberhagen and Wagner each pitched scoreless ball from the third inning to the sixth. Jim Lindeman hit a double against Wagner to lead off the top of the seventh. Ryan Thompson singled and went to third base on Stinnett’s double that scored Lindeman. Saberhagen was retired on a ground ball to Bell. Jose Vizcaino followed with a single to drive home Thompson and Stinnett, extending the Mets’ lead to 4-1. Vizcaino stole second and John Cangelosi drew a walk. Pittsburgh reliever Ravelo Manzanillo retired Orsulak on a fly ball to right fielder Clark. Ravelo Manzanillo then threw a called third strike past Bonilla to close out the inning.

Clark singled against Mets’ reliever Roger Mason to begin the bottom of the seventh. Merced drew a walk and Josias Manzanillo came in to pitch for the Mets. Slaught greeted Josias with a double that brought home Clark. Foley followed with a single to plate Merced and reduce the Mets’ lead to 4-3. Trying to score on the play, Slaught was out at home via a throw by left fielder Cangelosi to catcher Stinnett. Josias Manzanillo then retired Garcia on a grounder to third baseman Bonilla and fanned pinch-hitter Gary Varsho for the inning’s final out.

Lindeman got a one-out double against Bucs’ reliever Alejandro Pena in the top of the eighth. Thompson was given an intentional walk and Stinnett hit a force play ground ball to third baseman Foley. On the play, second baseman Garcia made an error that allowed pinch-runner Rick Parker to score for a 5-3 Mets lead. With pinch-hitter Jeff McKnight at bat, a wild pitch moved Stinnett to second base. Pena retired McKnight on an inning-ending pop-up to Foley. Mets’ relievers Mike Maddux and John Franco then combined for a scoreless bottom half.

Cangelosi drew a one-out walk against Pena in the top of the ninth. Pirates’ reliever Jeff Ballard got Orsulak to fly out to right fielder Merced and issued an intentional walk to Bonilla. Kent hit a single against Pittsburgh’s Mark Dewey to bring home Cangelosi with the Mets’ sixth run. Dewey struck out Franco to finish off the inning and Slaught grounded out to Bonilla to lead off the bottom half. Pinch-hitter Kevin Young popped out to Kent and an error by Bonilla allowed Garcia to reach base. Franco then retired pinch-hitter Lloyd McClendon on a fly ball to Orsulak for the final out of the game. The Mets had a victory with some late-inning offense.