September 13, 1998: Blair Leads Four-Hit Shutout

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Date: September 13, 1998
Mets starter: Willie Blair
Mets: 1
Expos: 0
Winning pitcher: Willie Blair
Key player(s): Willie Blair, Brian McRae
Key play: McRae's double in 8th and throw in 9th

The Mets faced the Expos on a Sunday afternoon in Montreal. The teams played the finale of a three-game series. Willie Blair and two relievers teamed up for a four-hitter in a 1-0 Mets win.

Expos' starter Miguel Batista pitched a scoreless top of the first inning. Blair surrendered only a walk to Shane Andrews in the bottom half and Batista set down the side in order in the top of the second. Fernando Seguignol singled to lead off the bottom of the inning. Brad Fullmer and Bob Henley were retired on fly balls to center fielder Brian McRae and a wild pitch moved Seguignol to second base. With Orlando Cabrera at bat, Seguinol was caught on a pickoff for the inning's third out.

Batista yielded just a single to Edgardo Alfonzo in the top of the third. Blair hurled a perfect bottom half and McRae got a one-out single in the top of the fourth. Lenny Harris hit a force play ground ball back to Batista and stole second base. Carlos Baerga was walked intentionally and Rey Ordonez grounded to second baseman Wilton Guerrero for a force play that ended the inning. Blair then held the Expos to a single by Andrews in the bottom half.

Blair drew a walk to open the top of the fifth. Batista retired the next three Mets batters and Willie set down the side 1-2-3 in the bottom of the inning. Todd Hundley walked to begin the top of the sixth. McRae grounded to third baseman Andrews for a double play and Harris was retired on an inning-ending ground ball to shortstop Cabrera. Blair gave up just a walk to Wilton Guerrero in the bottom half and Batista retired the side in order in the top of the seventh. Willie then set down all three Montreal hitters in the bottom of the inning.

Alfonzo drew a walk against Expos' reliever Anthony Telford with one out in the top of the eighth. John Olerud flied out to center fielder Terry Jones and a walk to Hundley ensued. McRae hit a double against Montreal's Rick DeHart to drive home Alfonzo with the first run of the game. DeHart retired pinch-hitter Todd Pratt on a grounder to Andrews that closed out the inning and Fullmer doubled against Blair to lead off the bottom half. Henley's sacrifice bunt sent pinch-runner Mike Mordecai to third base and the Mets' Dennis Cook struck out pinch-hitter Robert Perez. Cook then got F. P. Santangelo on a pop-up to catcher Hundley to finish off the inning.

DeHart hurled a perfect top of the ninth. Andrews drew a two-out walk against Mets' reliever John Franco in the bottom half. A wild pitch advanced Andrews to second base and Vladimir Guerrero was walked intentionally. Pinch-hitter Mike Hubbard singled for the Expos' fourth hit. Trying to score on the play, Andrews was out at home via a throw by McRae to Hundley to bring the game to an end. The Mets had a shutout victory.

Notes

  • The win for Blair was his only one as a Mets pitcher