September 29, 1999: Mets End Skid With Rout of Braves
|Date: September 29, 1999|
|Mets starter: Al Leiter|
|Winning pitcher: Al Leiter|
|Key player(s): John Olerud, Rickey Henderson, Al Leiter|
|Key play: Henderson’s two-run single, Olerud’s grand slam|
The Mets faced the Braves on a Wednesday night at Shea Stadium. The teams played in front of 43,922 fans on hand. The Mets ended a seven-game losing streak with a 9-2 win over Atlanta.
Mets’ starter Al Leiter pitched a perfect top of the first inning. With one out in the bottom half, Edgardo Alfonzo reached on an error by shortstop Jose Hernandez. Alfonzo stole second base and advanced to third on John Olerud’s ground out to second baseman Bret Boone. Mike Piazza hit a single to score Alfonzo and give the Mets a 1-0 lead. Braves’ starter Greg Maddux then retired Robin Ventura on a fly ball to center fielder Andruw Jones for the final out of the inning.
Following a scoreless second inning, Gerald Williams drew a two-out walk in the top of the third. Boone singled to right field and Chipper Jones drew a walk to load the bases. Brian Jordan singled to drive home Williams and Boone, putting the Braves ahead by a run. Leiter threw a called third strike past Andruw Jones to close out the inning and Maddux shut down the Mets in the bottom half. Leiter then pitched a scoreless top of the fourth.
Darryl Hamilton hit a single to lead off the bottom of the fourth inning. Roger Cedeno and Rey Ordonez followed with back-to-back singles to load the bases. Leiter singled to score Hamilton and tie the game. Rickey Henderson hit a single to score Cedeno and Ordonez for a 4-2 Mets lead. An ensuing single by Alfonzo reloaded the bases. Olerud then slugged a grand slam to increase the New York lead to 8-2.
Piazza singled for the Mets’ eighth consecutive hit against Maddux. Atlanta reliever Kevin McGlinchy came in to pitch and got Ventura to fly out to left fielder Williams. Hamilton hit a single and Cedeno took a called third strike. Ordonez was retired on a grounder to Boone that ended the inning. Leiter set down the Braves 1-2-3 in the top of the fifth. McGlinchy then hurled a perfect bottom half.
Leiter and the Braves’ Bruce Chen each pitched a scoreless sixth inning. Al shut down Atlanta again in the top of the seventh and pinch-hitter Benny Agbayani drew a walk with one out in the bottom half. Henderson hit a double that sent Agbayani to third base. Benny scored the Mets’ ninth run on a sacrifice fly by Alfonzo. Chen retired Olerud on a ground ball to first baseman Brian Hunter to end the inning. Mets’ reliever John Franco pitched a perfect top of the eighth. Atlanta’s David Cortes then hurled a scoreless bottom half.
Franco struck out pinch-hitter George Lombard to begin the top of the ninth inning. Pinch-hitter Greg Myers also went down on strikes. Franco then fanned pinch-hitter Randall Simon to finish off the game. The Mets had a victory that brought their skid to an end.