Mets 11, Reds 4
Shortstop José Reyes had a day at the plate while Tom Seaver pitched a complete game, leading the New York Mets to an 11–4 victory against the Cincinnati Reds at Riverfront Stadium in Cincinnati. Reyes had six RBI, and Seaver had eight strikeouts on the day.
Reds Strike First
Reyes grounded out to pitcher Eppa Rixey to lead off the game. First baseman Keith Hernandez hit a hard line drive past Barry Larkin, bringing Darryl Strawberry to the plate. Strawberry hit a medium grounder for a single to advance Hernandez to third. Unfortunately, catcher Gary Carter grounded out for a 6-4-3 double play to end the top of the first.
Seaver took the hill in the bottom of the first. Third baseman Pete Rose hit a groundout to Mets’ second baseman Edgardo Alfonso. Next, second baseman Joe Morgan popped up to Hernandez for two quick outs. But, right fielder Frank Robinson hit a medium-line drive for his first hit of the day. Then, catcher Johnny Bench drew a walk, giving the Reds two runners on base. First baseman Joey Votto took a Seaver fastball deep past the left-field wall, driving in Robinson and Bench. Left fielder George Foster hit a groundout to third baseman David Wright, ending the first with a 3–0 Reds lead.
Mets Trim the Lead
Center fielder Carlos Beltran hit a soft line drive for a bloop single. Wright would then hit a medium grounder for a single, advancing Beltran to third. Alfonzo would hit a grounder past the infield to score Beltran and advance Wright to third as well. Next up, Cleon Jones hit a hard fly ball for a double to score Wright with Alfonzo at third. Rixey would get catcher Mike Piazza looking on a full count for his first strikeout of the day. Reyes was up to the plate for the second time of the day, this time, hitting a single to score both Alfonzo and Jones. Both Hernandez and Strawberry flew out to end the top half of the second with a 4–3 Mets lead.
Seaver would recover nicely in the bottom of the second. He got Larkin out on a groundout to third. But Vida Pinson got to first, thanks to a medium grounder. Thanks to Seavers’s throw to Reyes, Tony Perez reached base on a fielder’s choice as Pinson was forced out at second. Rose ended the inning with a ground out to first.
In the top of the third, Carter flew out to the center-field warning track for the first out of the inning. Beltran hit a soft fly ball with a bloop shot to the gap for a double. Wright hit a medium-line drive for a single to score Beltran for a 5-3 Mets lead. Rixey worked on Alfonzo as he grounded out into a double play.
Seaver had an efficient bottom of the third. He got both Morgan and Robinson out on easy groundouts to first, and he got his first strikeout of the game as Bench struck out swinging.
Mets Do More Damage
Things didn’t get any easier for Rixey heading into the fourth inning. Jones got the Mets rally going with another soft-line drive for a bloop single. Piazza laid down a sacrifice bunt to first as Jones advanced to second. Reyes got his second hit of the day with another line drive for a single and scoring Jones along the way. Hernandez hit a hard grounder past Morgan for a double as another Mets run crosses the plate for a 7-3 New York lead. Strawberry struck out after he chased a low-breaking ball and Carter grounded out to end the inning.
Votto gave the Reds some life with a home run to cut the lead to 7-4. However, Votto’s home run was the only thing going in the bottom of the fourth. Seaver went to work on the final three batters of the inning. Foster went down on strikes, Larkin popped up to third, and Pinson grounded out.
The fifth inning was a quick one for both teams. Beltran hit a single then Wright was walked. Alfonzo grounded into a double play by the sharp movements of Larkin and Morgan. Jones struck out swinging for Rixey’s second punchout of the day. In the bottom half, Seaver got all three of his victims to fly out as the Mets hang on to a 7–4 lead heading into the sixth.
Rixey Gets Pulled
Rixey’s day didn’t get any better. After he walked Piazza on a full count, Reyes extended the Mets lead with a home run to the left-center field wall. That would be enough for Rixey as he was pulled for reliever Aroldis Chapman. Chapman immediately went to work as he got Hernandez to ground out and back-to-back strikeouts to Strawberry and Carter. Heading into the bottom of the sixth, the Mets were up comfortably 9–4.
Fortunately, for Seaver, he continued to have himself a day. He managed to strike out Robinson, then got Bench and Votto out on quick infield groundouts to first.
Mets Expand Lead Over Reds
The final three innings were crucial for any type of comeback for the Reds. Chapman would get Beltran out on a line drive and Wright looking on strikes. He would be pulled for Rob Dibble, who managed to strike out Alfonzo. Seaver got Foster, Larkin, and Pinson out on strikes, furthering his excellent performance of the day. Meanwhile, the eighth inning didn’t get any better for the Reds. After Dibble walked Jones, Piazza laid down a sacrifice bunt to advance Jones to second. Then, Reyes hit another single to score Jones. After, Reyes would steal second and advance to third on an error from Bench. Hernandez would score the last Mets run of the day with a ground out to first, giving the Mets an 11-4 lead.
The Reds couldn’t muster out any runs or runners in scoring position. The dominance by Seaver was enough for the Mets to eliminate the Reds in the All-Time Tournament.
The Mets took care of business with their 11-4 victory. New York will move on to the round of eight as they battle their way through the All-Time Tournament.
José Reyes, Tom Seaver, Eppa Rixey, Pete Rose, Johnny Bench, Barry Larkin, Frank Robinson, Joey Votto, Joe Morgan, Vada Pinson, George Foster, Aroldis Chapman, Rob Dibble, Darryl Strawberry, Keith Hernandez, Gary Carter, Carlos Beltran, David Wright, Edgardo Alfonzo, Cleon Jones, Mike Piazza