September 14, 1996: Hundley Sets Home Run Record
|Date: September 14, 1996|
|Mets starter: Mark Clark|
|Winning pitcher: Derek Wallace|
|Key player(s): Todd Hundley, Lance Johnson|
|Key play: Hundley's 3-run homer, Johnson's single in 12th|
The Mets faced the Braves on a Saturday afternoon at Shea Stadium. After falling behind, the Mets came back to tie the game on the strength of a record-setting home run by Todd Hundley. The end result was a 6-5 win for New York in 12 innings.
The Braves got two runs in the first inning against Mets' starter Mark Clark. With two out, center fielder Lance Johnson made an error on a ball hit by Ryan Klesko that allowed Terry Pendleton and Fred McGriff to score. Atlanta scored twice more in the third when Pendleton came home on McGriff's ground out and Klesko's single brought home Chipper Jones.
In the fourth, McGriff singled off Mets' reliever Mike Fyhrie to score Pendleton with the Braves' fifth run. Fyhrie then got Klesko on a ground out to end the inning. In the fifth, Mike pitched a perfect inning to finish off his stint in his major league debut.
Matt Franco singled for the Mets' fourth hit of the game to start the seventh inning. Carl Everett and Johnson added singles to load the bases with one out. Greg McMichael came in to pitch for Atlanta and struck out Edgardo Alfonzo before giving up a two-run double to Bernard Gilkey. Hundley then hit a three-run homer to tie the game, 5-5. Todd's clout gave him 41 for the season, breaking Roy Campanella's 1953 record for home runs in a season by a catcher.
Rick Trlicek pitched one-hit shutout relief for the Mets in the eighth and ninth innings. Jerry DiPoto shut down the Braves in the 10th and 11th. Meanwhile, the Mets were held scoreless by Atlanta relievers.
In the top of the 12th, Derek Wallace retired the Braves' batters in order. Franco led off the bottom half with a walk. Matt moved to second base on a ground out before Tim Bogar was hit by a pitch. Johnson followed with a single to score Franco to end the game. The Mets had an exciting comeback win that featured Hundley's historical feat.