September 5, 1989: Samuel's Single in 9th Beats Cubs

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Date: September 5, 1989
Mets starter: Sid Fernandez
Mets: 3
Cubs: 2
Winning pitcher: Sid Fernandez
Key player(s): Sid Fernandez, Tim Teufel, Juan Samuel
Key play: Teufel’s double, Samuel’s single

The Mets faced the Cubs on a Tuesday night at Shea Stadium. The teams played the latter half of a two-game series. Juan Samuel hit a run-scoring single in the ninth inning for a 3-2 Mets win over Chicago.

Mets’ starter Sid Fernandez pitched a perfect top of the first. Gregg Jefferies singled against the Cubs’ Jeff Pico to lead off the bottom half. Samuel hit a double to advance Jefferies to third base and Howard Johnson popped out to shortstop Shawon Dunston. Darryl Strawberry was intentionally walked to load the bases and Kevin McReynolds followed with a sacrifice fly to score Jefferies for a 1-0 Mets lead. Keith Hernandez reached on first baseman Mark Grace’s error to reload the bases. Pico then retired Gary Carter on a ground ball to Dunston for the third out.

After scoreless second and third innings, Fernandez set down the Cubs in order in the top of the fourth. Mark Carreon singled to lead off the bottom of the inning. Hernandez doubled to drive home Carreon with the Mets’ second run of the game. Carter and Kevin Elster were retired on ground balls to third baseman Luis Salazar. Fernandez hit a single on which Hernandez was out at home via a throw by left fielder Lloyd McClendon to catcher Rick Wrona to finish off the inning. Sid shut down the Cubs in the top of the fifth. Chicago reliever Paul Kilgus then hurled a scoreless bottom half.

Ryne Sandberg hit a one-out double in the top of the sixth. Grace lined out to right fielder Strawberry and a single by Andre Dawson brought home Sandberg. McClendon popped out to second baseman Jefferies to end the inning and Kilgus gave up just a single to Carreon in the bottom half. Fernandez hurled a perfect top of the seventh and Elster singled to begin the bottom of the inning. Sid’s sacrifice bunt moved Elster to second base and Jefferies grounded out to Dunston. Kilgus then walked Samuel and retired Johnson on a fly ball to McClendon to close out the inning.

Fernandez set down all three Cubs batters in the top of the eighth. Chicago reliever Mitch Williams hurled a scoreless bottom half and Grace doubled to begin the top of the ninth. Dawson was retired on a fly ball to Strawberry, after which Grace advanced to third base. McClendon followed with a sacrifice fly that scored Grace and tied the game at 2-2. Fernandez then got Salazar to line out to third baseman Johnson and end the inning.

Williams retired Elster on a pop-up to second baseman Sandberg to open the bottom of the ninth. Pinch-hitter Tim Teufel hit a double to center field. Pinch-runner Lou Thornton moved to third base following Jefferies’ fly out to center fielder Jerome Walton. Samuel came up to bat and delivered a single that plated Thornton with the winning run. The Mets had an exciting victory.