September 29, 1980: Youngblood Homers in 10th

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Date: September 29, 1980
Mets starter: Ed Lynch
Mets: 5
Pirates: 4
Winning pitcher: Jeff Reardon
Key player(s): Joel Youngblood
Key play: Youngblood's home run

The Mets and Pirates began the final week of the season on a Monday afternoon at Shea Stadium. The teams combined for 25 hits (23 of them singles) in a game that reached extra innings. The Mets came out with a 5-4 victory on Joel Youngblood's two-run homer in the bottom of the 10th.

In the first inning, Vance Law and Dave Parker got back-to-back singles with one out for Pittsburgh. Mike Easler followed with another single to bring home Law with the first run of the game. Roy Lee Jackson replaced Mets' starter Ed Lynch and struck out Bill Robinson. Jackson then gave up a single to Tony Pena that scored Parker for a 2-0 Pirates lead.

Jackson held Pittsburgh scoreless from the second inning to the fifth. Roy Lee allowed three singles and walked none while striking out two Pirate hitters. Meanwhile, the Mets got a run in the fourth when Alex Trevino reached on second baseman Law's error that allowed Steve Henderson to score.

In the top of the sixth, Kurt Bevacqua's single off Met reliever Scott Holman drove home Easler for the third Pittsburgh run of the game. Later in the inning, the Pirates had the bases loaded with one out. Holman struck out Rick Rhoden and then got Omar Moreno on a force play grounder for the final out.

Rhoden walked Taveras and gave up a single to Youngblood to begin the bottom of the seventh inning. Against Pittsburgh reliever Enrique Romo, Wally Backman got a bunt single to load the bases. Romo walked Lee Mazzilli to force home Taveras, cutting the Pirates' lead to 3-2. With one out, Youngblood crossed the plate on Claudell Washington's force play grounder to tie the game.

Mets' reliever Jeff Reardon held Pittsburgh scoreless despite bases loaded situations in the eighth and ninth innings. Meanwhile, the Pirates' Kent Tekulve held down the Mets. Pittsburgh then got a run in the tenth on Bernie Carbo's single off Reardon that brought home Dale Berra for a 4-3 lead.

Hubie Brooks singled off Pittsburgh's Grant Jackson to start the bottom of the tenth for the Mets. Brooks moved to second base on Elliott Maddox's sacrifice bunt before Taveras struck out. Youngblood then clouted a home run to end the game. The Mets had a dramatic victory.

Notes

  • Carbo's single was his last appearance of his 12-year major league career.