October 4, 1999: NL Wild Card Playoff
|Date: October 4, 1999|
|Mets starter: Al Leiter|
|Winning pitcher: Al Leiter|
|Key player(s): Al Leiter, Edgardo Alfonzo|
|Key play: Alfonzo's two-run home run|
On the 30th anniversary of their first post-season game, the Mets played in their first ever tie-breaker playoff. The National League Wild Card spot was on the line as they faced the Reds in Cincinnati. Al Leiter pitched a shutout as the Mets won, 5-0, earning a trip to the Division Series.
Leiter never let the Reds get started. He allowed only two hits and retired 16 consecutive batters in his complete game win. Al recorded seven strikeouts in silencing the Cincinnati lineup.
The Mets wasted no time against Reds' starter Steve Parris. Rickey Henderson led off the game with a single and Edgardo Alfonzo followed with a home run for a 2-0 lead. The tone of the game was set quickly.
The lead was extended to 3-0 in the third inning. Robin Ventura walked with the bases loaded, forcing home a run. Henderson then homered leading off the fifth and Alfonzo doubled to score Rey Ordonez in the sixth to give the Mets a five-run advantage.
In the ninth, Leiter retired Dmitri Young on a line drive to second baseman Alfonzo for the final out. The Mets were headed for the post-season for the first time in 11 years.