September 28, 1979: Mets Beat Cardinals in 11 for Sweep
|Date: September 28, 1979|
|Mets starter: Pete Falcone|
|Winning pitcher: Neil Allen|
|Key player(s): Frank Taveras, Kelvin Chapman, Gil Flores|
|Key play: Flores’ triple in 11th|
The Mets and Cardinals faced each other in a doubleheader on a Friday evening. After winning the opener of the twinbill at Busch Memorial Stadium, the Mets were in search of a sweep in the nightcap. In eleven innings, the Mets came away with a 7-6 win over St. Louis.
Frank Taveras and Bruce Boisclair got back-to-back singles against Cardinals’ starter John Urrea to begin the top of the first inning. Lee Mazzilli grounded back to Urrea and a pop-up by Richie Hebner was caught by shortstop Garry Templeton. Urrea retired Joel Youngblood on an inning-ending fly ball to center fielder Tony Scott and a double by Templeton opened the bottom half. Templeton advanced to third base on a single by Jim Lentine and scored on a sacrifice fly by Scott. Roger Freed doubled to drive home Lentine for a 2-0 St. Louis lead. Ken Reitz flied out to right fielder Boisclair. Mets’ starter Pete Falcone then got Steve Swisher to pop out to first baseman Mazzilli and end the inning.
Following a scoreless second inning, Taveras singled with one out in the top of the third. Boisclair reached second base on an error by second baseman Mike Tyson that allowed Taveras to score. Urrea set down the next two Mets batters to close out the inning and Falcone pitched a scoreless bottom half. To begin the top of the fourth, Youngblood drew a walk and moved to second on a single by Dan Norman. Youngblood went to third on Ron Hodges’ fly out to right fielder Lentine and scored the tying run on Kelvin Chapman’s force play ground ball to shortstop Mike Phillips (who had replaced Templeton.) On the play, Chapman went to second on first baseman Freed’s error. Urrea then got Falcone to ground out to Phillips and finish off the inning.
Reitz hit a double to lead off the bottom of the fourth. Swisher followed with a triple to drive home Reitz with the go-ahead run and a fly ball by Keith Smith was caught by Boisclair. Tyson went down on strikes and Urrea singled to score Swisher, increasing the Redbirds’ lead to 4-2. Falcone got Phillips on a pop-up to shortstop Taveras for the third out and Frank drew a walk to open the top of the fifth. Taveras moved to second base on Boisclair’s ground out to Freed and to third on a wild pitch. Mazzilli drew a walk and Hebner singled to score Taveras. Following a double steal, Urrea issued a walk to Youngblood that loaded the bases. Cards’ reliever Dan O’Brien struck out Norman and retired Hodges on an inning-ending pop-up to Tyson. Falcone then pitched a scoreless bottom half.
O’Brien set down the Mets in order in the top of the sixth inning. Against New York’s Roy Lee Jackson, Swisher began the bottom half by reaching on an error by Taveras. Smith hit a single (and advanced to second base) on which Swisher got caught in a rundown and was tagged out by Jackson. On an ensuing single by Tyson, Smith was out at home via a throw by left fielder Norman to catcher Hodges. Jackson retired O’Brien on a pop-up to Taveras that ended the inning. With two outs in the top of the seventh, Hebner and Youngblood got consecutive singles to right field. O’Brien then got Norman to hit a force play ground ball to second baseman Ken Oberkfell (who had replaced Tyson) for the final out of the inning.
To open the bottom of the seventh, Phillips doubled and went to third base on Lentine’s ground out to second baseman Chapman. Scott popped out to Chapman and a single by Freed plated Phillips for a 5-3 Cardinals lead. Reitz hit a single to send Freed to third and Dwight Bernard came in to pitch for the Mets. Bernard got Swisher on an inning-ending fly ball to center fielder Youngblood and a double by Hodges began the top of the eighth. Chapman tripled to drive home pinch-runner Sergio Ferrer and pinch-hitter John Stearns grounded out to Oberkfell. Taveras hit a single to score Chapman and tie the game. With St. Louis reliever Darold Knowles facing pinch-hitter Elliott Maddox, Taveras stole second and went to third on Oberkfell’s obstruction error. Knowles struck out Maddox and got Mazzilli on a pop-up to Oberkfell that closed out the inning. The Cards loaded the bases with two outs against the Mets’ Ed Glynn in the bottom half. New York’s Jeff Reardon then got Scott to pop out to Taveras and stop the Cards’ scoring chance.
Youngblood got a one-out single in the top of the ninth inning. Norman drew a walk and Knowles was replaced in the mound by Redbirds’ reliever Roy Thomas. With pinch-hitter Doug Flynn at bat, a double steal landed Youngblood on third base and Norman on second. Flynn got a bunt single that brought home Youngblood for a 6-5 Mets lead. Thomas threw a called third strike past Chapman and retired Stearns on an inning-ending grounder to Phillips. With two outs in the bottom half, Jerry Mumphrey hit a double against the Mets’ Neil Allen. Pinch-hitter Dane Iorg followed with an infield single on which catcher Stearns made an error that allowed Mumphrey to score and retie the game. Allen then got Oberkfell on a ground ball to Taveras that finished off the inning and sent the game onward.
Thomas shut down the Mets in the top of the tenth. Pinch-hitter Lou Brock singled with two outs in the bottom half. With Scott at the plate, Brock was caught stealing on a throw by Stearns to Taveras for the inning’s final out. As a pinch-hitter for Allen in the top of the 11th, Gil Flores tripled against Cardinals’ reliever George Frazier. First baseman Keith Hernandez made an error on the play that allowed Flores to score and put the Mets ahead by a run. Frazier then retired Stearns on a fly ball to left fielder Iorg that ended the inning.
Mets’ reliever Andy Hassler got Scott on a ground ball to third baseman Hebner to open the bottom of the 11th. Hernandez hit a single and Reitz lined out to Norman. Hassler then struck out Mumphrey to end the game. The Mets had an extra-inning victory to complete a sweep of the doubleheader.
- Brock’s single in the 10th inning was the 3,023rd and final hit of his Hall of Fame career.