May 3, 1986: Ojeda and Orosco Six-Hit Reds

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Date: May 3, 1986
Mets starter: Bob Ojeda
Mets: 4
Reds: 1
Winning pitcher: Bob Ojeda
Key player(s): Bob Ojeda, Jesse Orosco, Keith Hernandez
Key play: Hernandez’s two-run homer

The Mets faced the Reds on a Saturday afternoon in Cincinnati. The teams played the second of three games in a weekend series. Bob Ojeda and Jesse Orosco combined on a six-hitter in a 4-1 Mets win.

Reds’ starter John Denny yielded just a double to Keith Hernandez in the top of the first inning. Dave Concepcion got an infield single with one out in the bottom half. Concepcion stole second base and Dave Parker went down on strikes. Ojeda then issued a walk to Nick Esasky and got Tracy Jones on an inning-ending force play ground ball to shortstop Howard Johnson.

To begin the top of the second, Danny Heep singled and advanced to third base on a single by Ray Knight. Heep scored the game’s first run on Johnson’s ground out to first baseman Esasky. On the play, Esasky made an error that allowed Knight to advance to third. Ray came home on Barry Lyons’ ground out to third baseman Buddy Bell for a 2-0 Mets lead. Denny then struck out Ojeda to end the inning.

Bell led off the bottom of the second with an infield single. On his own hit, Bell moved to third base via an error by Ojeda. Sal Butera followed with a single to drive home Bell for the first Cincinnati run and Ron Oester hit a force play grounder to Johnson. Denny hit a ground ball to third baseman Knight for a double play that ended the inning. With two outs in the top of the third, Hernandez singled and Darryl Strawberry drew a walk. Denny retired Heep on a grounder to second baseman Oester for the third out and Parker got a two-out single in the bottom half. Esasky and Jones drew back-to-back walks to load the bases. Ojeda then got Bell to fly out to right fielder Strawberry and finish off the inning.

Denny shut down the Mets from the fourth inning to the sixth. Ojeda responded by limiting the Reds to a single by Concepcion in a trio of scoreless bottom halves. With one out in the top of the seventh inning, Lenny Dykstra tripled to right field. Wally Backman grounded out to Esasky and a two-run homer by Hernandez ensued. Denny retired Strawberry on a ground ball to Oester for the inning’s final out and pinch-hitter Kurt Stillwell drew a one-out in the bottom half. Eric Davis singled for the Reds’ sixth hit and Concepcion reached on second baseman Backman’s error to load the bases. Parker was retired on a pop-up to Knight. Ojeda then got Esasky on a fly ball to left fielder Heep that closed out the inning.

Cincinnati reliever John Franco hurled a scoreless top of the eighth. Orosco shut down the Reds in the bottom half and Franco retired the side in order in the top of the ninth. Oester and Stillwell were both struck out to open the bottom of the inning. Davis drew a walk and stole second base. Orosco then got Concepcion to fly out to center fielder Dykstra and end the game. The Mets had a victory with solid pitching.