May 29, 1981: Bailor and Kingman Put Away Cubs

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Date: May 29, 1981
Mets starter: Mike Scott
Mets: 6
Cubs: 1
Winning pitcher: Mike Scott
Key player(s): Bob Bailor, Dave Kingman, Mike Scott
Key play: Bailor’s single, Kingman’s home run

The Mets faced the Cubs on a Friday night at Shea Stadium. The teams played the opener of a three-game series. Bob Bailor and Dave Kingman combined to drive in five runs as the Mets defeated Chicago, 6-1.

After two scoreless innings, Mets’ starter Mike Scott pitched a perfect top of the third. Scott drew a walk against the Cubs’ Randy Martz to open the bottom half. Mookie Wilson followed with a double to advance Scott to third base. Bailor singled to plate Scott and Wilson for a 2-0 Mets lead. Mike Jorgensen went down on strikes and Kingman flied out to right fielder Leon Durham. Martz then issued an intentional walk to Lee Mazzilli and retired John Stearns on a line drive to Durham that ended the inning.

With one out in the top of the fourth, Durham singled and stole second base. Jerry Morales hit a single that scored Durham with the first Chicago run of the game. Mike Lum flied out to center fielder Wilson and a single by Ken Reitz ensued. Scott retired Tim Blackwell on an inning-ending pop-up to shortstop Bailor. Martz then held the Mets to a single by Hubie Brooks in the bottom half.

Scott gave up just a single to Martz in the top of the fifth inning. Wilson tripled to begin the bottom half. Bailor grounded out to third baseman Reitz and a walk to Jorgensen followed. Kingman slugged a three-run homer to increase the Mets’ lead to 5-1. Mazzilli hit a single and Martz was replaced on the mound by Cubs’ reliever Rawly Eastwick. Lee stole second base and went to third on Stearns’ single to left field. John stole second and Brooks was struck out. Doug Flynn was walked intentionally to load the bases. Eastwick then fanned Scott for the inning’s final out.

Scott hurled a scoreless top of the sixth. To begin the bottom of the inning, Wilson walked and stole second base. Eastwick issued a walk to Bailor and Chicago reliever Doug Capilla retired Jorgensen on a line drive to left fielder Lum. Kingman drew a walk that loaded the bases and Mazzilli walked to force home Wilson with the Mets’ sixth run. Capilla then struck out both Stearns and Brooks to finish off the inning.

Scott yielded only a single to Ivan DeJesus in the top of the seventh. Capilla gave up just a single to Wilson in the bottom half and Scott set down all three Cubs batters in the top of the eighth. Chicago reliever Ken Kravec hurled a scoreless bottom of the inning and pinch-hitter Jim Tracy hit a one-out double in the top of the ninth. Blackwell drew a walk and Scott got Hector Cruz to hit a ground ball to Bailor for a game-ending double play. The Mets had a victory to start the weekend series.