October 1, 1985: Strawberry's Blast Beats Cardinals

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Date: October 1, 1985
Mets starter: Ron Darling
Mets: 1
Cardinals: 0
Winning pitcher: Jesse Orosco
Key player(s): Ron Darling, Darryl Strawberry
Key play: Strawberry's home run in 11th

The Mets began a crucial three-game series in St. Louis on a Tuesday night. Trailing the Cardinals by three games in the National League East Division standings, the Mets had thoughts of a sweep and leaving the city in a tie for first place. They took the first step towards that goal with a 1-0 win over the Redbirds on Darryl Strawberry's mammoth home run in the 11th inning.

Ron Darling pitched masterfully for the Mets. He held the Cardinals to four hits over nine shutout innings. Darling recorded five strikeouts and retired the last seven St. Louis batters he faced. Meanwhile, the Mets were held without a run by Cards' starter John Tudor. The team compiled six hits, but did score against the lefthander. Tudor shut down the Mets again with a perfect top of the 10th inning. Reliever Jesse Orosco followed up by holding the Redbirds scoreless in the bottom half.

Cardinals' reliever Ken Dayley struck out Keith Hernandez and Gary Carter to begin the top of the 11th inning. Strawberry followed up by hitting a ball that made contact with the electronic message board beyond the right-center field wall. The monstrous homer put the Mets ahead by a run. George Foster added a single before Dayley retired Howard Johnson for the final out of the inning.

Orosco pitched a scoreless bottom of the 11th to end the game. The Mets had triumphed on Strawberry's tape-measure home run. The victory put the Mets two games back with two more left to play at Busch Stadium.