September 28, 1979: Berenguer's First Win, Reardon's First Save

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Date: September 28, 1979
Mets starter: Juan Berenguer
Mets: 6
Cardinals: 2
Winning pitcher: Juan Berenguer
Key player(s): Juan Berenguer, Richie Hebner, Doug Flynn, Jeff Reardon
Key play: Hebner’s double Flynn’s three run-scoring singles

The Mets faced the Cardinals in a doubleheader on a Friday evening. The teams played the opener to begin a four-game series at Busch Memorial Stadium that closed out the season. Juan Berenguer recorded his first major league win and Jeff Reardon chalked up his first save in a 6-2 Mets victory over St. Louis.

Following a scoreless first inning, Joel Youngblood led off the top of the second with a single against Redbirds’ starter Tom Bruno. Youngblood advanced to third base on a double by John Stearns and scored on Bruce Boisclair’s sacrifice fly. Doug Flynn hit a single that brought home Stearns for a 2-0 Mets lead. A sacrifice bunt by Berenguer moved Flynn to second. Bruno then retired Frank Taveras on a ground ball to shortstop Garry Templeton to end the inning.

Terry Kennedy singled with one out in the bottom of the second. Jerry Mumphrey followed with a force play grounder to second baseman Flynn. Ken Reitz hit a two-run homer to tie the game and Keith Smith singled to right field. Bruno flied out to right fielder Boisclair to finish off the inning and Elliott Maddox hit a double to begin the top of the third. Lee Mazzilli flied out to left fielder Smith and a double by Richie Hebner scored Maddox. Youngblood doubled to drive home Hebner and went to third base on Stearns’ ground out to first baseman Dane Iorg. Boisclair drew a walk and Flynn singled to plate Youngblood for a 5-2 Mets lead. Bruno got Berenguer on an inning-ending grounder to third baseman Reitz. Juan then shut down the Cards in the bottom half.

St. Louis reliever George Frazier pitched a perfect top of the fourth inning. Berenguer shut down the Cardinals in the bottom half and Hebner went down on strikes to open the top of the fifth. Youngblood drew a walk and Stearns flied out to right fielder Jim Lentine. Boisclair singled to send Youngblood to third base and Joel scored the Mets’ sixth run on a single by Flynn. Frazier retired Berenguer on a ground ball to Templeton for the inning’s third out. Juan then set down the Redbirds 1-2-3 in the bottom half.

For the Cardinals, reliever Buddy Schultz held the Mets to a single by Maddox in the top of the sixth inning. Berenguer hurled a scoreless bottom half and Schultz retired all three Mets batters in the top of the seventh. Kennedy singled to lead off the bottom of the inning. Mumphrey followed with a single and Reitz flied out to center fielder Maddox to advance Kennedy from second to third base. Berenguer retired Smith on a line drive to second baseman Flynn. Doug then threw to first baseman Mazzilli for an out on Mumphrey and an inning-ending double play.

Redbirds’ reliever Kim Seaman (in his major league debut) retired Flynn on a ground ball to third baseman Ken Oberkfell to open the top of the eighth. Berenguer drew a walk and Taveras was struck out. Seaman issued a walk to Maddox and followed up by striking out Mazzilli to end the inning. With one out in the bottom half, Templeton singled to center field. Lentine hit a single and Reardon came in to pitch for the Mets. Jeff fanned Oberkfell and got Iorg on an inning-ending pop-up to shortstop Taveras. Seaman then set down the Mets in order in the top of the ninth.

Kennedy grounded out to Taveras to lead off the bottom of the ninth inning. Mumphrey was retired on a ground ball to Flynn. Reardon then retired pinch-hitter Lou Brock on a grounder to third baseman Alex Trevino to end the game. The Mets had a successful beginning to the doubleheader as Berenguer got his first win and Reardon his first save as major leaguers.


  • Berenguer went on to a 15-season career in which he compiled a 67-62 won-lost record.
  • Reardon recorded a total of 367 saves in 16 major league seasons.