September 20, 1981: Mets Win with 22 Hits

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Date: September 20, 1981
Mets starter: Pat Zachry
Mets: 7
Cardinals: 6
Winning pitcher: Neil Allen
Key player(s): Mookie Wilson, Frank Taveras
Key play: Wilson's home run in 9th

The Mets and Cardinals played on a Sunday afternoon at Shea Stadium. Each of the first eight Met players in the starting lineup had at least one hit as the team totaled 22 for the game. Still, it took a two-run homer by Mookie Wilson with two out in the ninth inning to give the Mets a 7-6 victory over St. Louis.

The Cards scored five runs off Pat Zachry in the first three innings. Dane Iorg got a two-run single with two out in the first and George Hendrick blasted a three-run homer with none out in the third. Zachry was then replaced by reliever Ray Searage, who recorded all three outs of the third inning.

St. Louis starter Lary Sorensen kept the Mets shut out through five innings, despite allowing nine singles. In the sixth, back-to-back doubles by Ron Hodges and Wilson brought home the first two Met runs. Sorensen was then taken out and replaced by Doug Bair.

In the seventh, the Mets sent nine batters to the plate and scored three times. John Stearns singled and Doug Flynn doubled to drive home a run each off Bair. Rusty Staub followed with a single off Jim Kaat to score Flynn and tie the game. Frank Taveras and Wilson added two more singles to load the bases, but the Mets did not take the lead.

Neil Allen retired the first two Cardinal batters in the ninth before Tito Landrum came to bat. Landrum hit a triple to center field and scored on an error by Wilson. Allen struck out Ken Oberkfell to end the inning, but St. Louis had a 6-5 lead.

Cards' reliever Bruce Sutter came on to pitch the bottom of the ninth. Sutter retired the first two Mets, but Taveras doubled to keep New York alive. Wilson then redeemed himself by slugging a home run over the right field fence to end the game. The Mets had a dramatic win that was nailed down with their 22nd hit.