September 2, 1987: Hojo's Homer in 7th Beats Padres

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Date: September 2, 1987
Mets starter: Dwight Gooden
Mets: 4
Padres: 3
Winning pitcher: Dwight Gooden
Key player(s): Keith Hernandez, Howard Johnson
Key play: Hernandez's homer in 3rd, Johnson's homer in 7th

The Mets concluded a three-game series in San Diego on a Wednesday night. Dwight Gooden took the mound in an effort to give the Mets a sweep of the Padres. Gooden pitched a complete game, but it took a two-run homer by Howard Johnson in the seventh inning for the Mets to gain a 4-3 win.

The Padres got a run against Gooden in each of the first two innings. John Kruk's first-inning sacrifice fly scored Tony Gwynn and a double by Stan Jefferson brought home Tim Flannery in the second. Dwight got Carmelo Martinez to hit into a force play with the bases loaded to end the bottom of the second inning. Meanwhile, San Diego starter Ed Whitson allowed two hits in shutting down the Mets.

Dave Magadan singled with two outs in the top of the third inning. Keith Hernandez followed with a home run to tie the game at 2-2. Whitson got Kevin McReynolds on a ground ball back to the mound for the third out of the inning. Gooden then pitched a scoreless bottom half.

Gooden and Whitson each pitched perfect ball in the fourth and fifth innings. In the top of the sixth, Magadan struck out and Hernandez drew a walk. Whitson got McReynolds to hit into an inning-ending double play. The Padres then took a 3-2 lead on Garry Templeton's single that brought home Randy Ready in the bottom of the inning.

With one out in the top of the seventh, Gary Carter singled off Whitson. Keith Miller went in to run for Carter as Johnson came up to bat. Howard hit a home run to put the Mets ahead. Whitson retired the next two batters and Gooden pitched a 1-2-3 bottom of the inning.

Following a scoreless eighth, the Mets had two runners on base with one out in the top of the ninth. San Diego's Mark Davis relieved Whitson and retired Tim Teufel on a fly ball to left fielder Martinez. Davis then got Gooden to hit into a force play and end the inning with the Mets holding a one-run lead.

Gooden retired the Padres in order in the bottom of the ninth inning. The Mets had a victory as Dwight recorded his 13th win of the year. Hojo's homer had put the Mets over the top and completed a sweep of the series.