September 16, 1988: Jefferies' Single in 9th Beats Expos
|Date: September 16, 1988|
|Mets starter: Bob Ojeda|
|Winning pitcher: Randy Myers|
|Key player(s): Darryl Strawberry, Gregg Jefferies|
|Key play: Strawberry’s single in 1st, Jefferies’ single in 9th|
The Mets faced the Expos on a Friday night at Shea Stadium. The teams played the opener of a three-game series. Gregg Jefferies singled home the winning run in the ninth inning for a 4-3 Mets victory over Montreal.
Mets’ starter Bob Ojeda pitched a scoreless top of the first. Mookie Wilson hit a single against the Expos’ John Dopson to open the bottom half. Wally Backman drew a walk and Jefferies lined out to left fielder Tracy Jones. Darryl Strawberry singled to drive home Wilson with the first run of the game. Strawberry stole second base and Kevin McReynolds reached on a two-base error by third baseman Tim Wallach to score Backman. On the play, Strawberry also came home to extend the Mets’ lead to 3-0. Gary Carter flied out to center fielder Otis Nixon and a walk to Dave Magadan ensued. Dopson then struck out Kevin Elster to end the inning.
Wallach drew a leadoff walk in the top of the second. Nelson Santovenia singled and Rex Hudler followed with a force play ground ball to third baseman Jefferies. On the play, second baseman Backman made an error that allowed Wallach to score the Expos’ first run. Ojeda retired Luis Rivera on a grounder to shortstop Elster and fanned Dopson to close out the inning. Dopson then held the Mets to a single by Wilson in the bottom half.
Nixon got a bunt single to begin the top of the third. Jones singled and Andres Galarraga hit a force play grounder to Jefferies. On the play, Gregg made a throwing error that brought home Jones and sent Galarraga to second base. Hubie Brooks followed with a single to plate Galarraga and tie the game at 3-3. Ojeda struck out both Wallach and Santovenia to finish off the inning. Dopson then hurled a perfect bottom half.
Ojeda and Dopson each pitched scoreless ball from the fourth inning to the sixth. With one out in the top of the seventh, pinch-hitter Johnny Paredes got a bunt single against Ojeda. Paredes stole second base and Mets’ reliever Terry Leach struck out pinch-hitter Dave Martinez. Jones drew a walk and Galarraga was retired on an inning-ending line drive to center fielder Wilson. Backman got a bunt single off Montreal’s Tim Burke with one out in the bottom half. Jefferies singled to advance Backman to third and Strawberry was called out on strikes. McReynolds then grounded back to Burke for the inning’s final out.
Wallach and Santovenia got back-to-back singles against Leach with one out in the top of the eighth. Mets’ reliever Randy Myers struck out both pinch-hitter Mike Fitzgerald and Rivera to end the inning. Burke set down the Mets in order in the bottom half and Martinez drew a one-out walk in the top of the ninth. Jones walked and Galarraga went down on strikes. Myers then retired Brooks on a fly ball to right fielder Strawberry to close out the inning.
Against Expos’ reliever Joe Hesketh, pinch-hitter Keith Miller reached on an error by shortstop Rivera to lead off the bottom of the ninth. Wilson’s sacrifice bunt moved Miller to second base and pinch-hitter Tim Teufel grounded out to third baseman Tom O'Malley. Jefferies came to bat and delivered a single to drive home Miller with the game-ending run. The Mets had a win to start the weekend series.