October 12, 1986: Game Four of the NLCS
|Date: October 12, 1986|
|Mets starter: Sid Fernandez|
|Winning pitcher: Mike Scott|
|Key player(s): Mike Scott, Alan Ashby|
|Key play: Ashby's home run|
The Mets played the Astros in the fourth game of the National League Championship Series on a Sunday night at Shea Stadium. The home team aimed for a two-game Series lead. However, Mike Scott pitched his second complete game of the Series in a 3-1 Houston win.
Making his first post-season appearance on his 24th birthday, Mets’ starter Sid Fernandez chalked up a perfect top of the first inning. Scott responded by retiring the Mets in order in the bottom half. A single by Glenn Davis opened the top of the second. Fernandez followed up with strikeouts of Kevin Bass and Jose Cruz. An ensuing home run by Alan Ashby gave the Astros a 2-0 lead. Dickie Thon flied out to center fielder Lenny Dykstra to end the inning. Scott then set down the Mets 1-2-3 in the bottom half.
Fernandez and Scott each hurled scoreless and hitless ball in the third and fourth innings. Ashby flied out to Dykstra to lead off the top of the fifth. Thon homered for the third Houston run of the game. Scott took a called third strike and Bill Doran hit a fly ball to left fielder Mookie Wilson for the third out of the inning. Ray Knight singled for the Mets’ first hit with two outs in the bottom half. Scott then got Rafael Santana on an inning-ending pop-up to first baseman Davis.
In the sixth inning, Fernandez and Scott each retired the side in order. Mets’ reliever Roger McDowell pitched a perfect top of the seventh. Scott retired all three New York batters in the bottom half and McDowell set down the Astros in order in the top of the eighth. A single by Wilson began the bottom of the inning. Mookie advanced all the way to third base on Knight’s ground out to third baseman Phil Garner. Pinch-hitter Danny Heep followed with a sacrifice fly to drive home Wilson. Scott retired pinch-hitter Howard Johnson on a fly ball to right fielder Bass for the third out. The Astros put runners at first and second base against Mets’ reliever Doug Sisk in the top of the ninth. Sisk then got Cruz for a force play ground ball to third baseman Knight that ended the inning.
Dykstra led off the bottom of the ninth with a single to left field. A sacrifice bunt by Wally Backman advanced Dykstra to second base. Keith Hernandez grounded out to second baseman Doran to move Dykstra to third. Scott then retired Gary Carter on a fly ball to center fielder Billy Hatcher to end the game. The Series was even at two games apiece.
- Ashby's homer came after he hit a foul ball that landed into a field-level seating area that was temporarily installed for the post-season. This area eliminated any chance of the ball being caught by a Mets' fielder.