Tuesday, June 7, 2016

June 7, 1985: The Birds Breakout In Extras In New York

     On June 7, 1985, the Cardinals scored six runs in the thirteenth en route to a 7-2 victory over the Mets in New York.

The game was a pitchers duel with Kurt Kepshire on the bump for the Birds, while Ron Darling toed the rubber for the Mets. Kepshire ripped a one out double in the third, then scored when Willie McGee singled with two outs in the inning. The hurler allowed just three hits through seven and a third, striking out six along the way. Kepshire's biggest hiccup came in the fifth when outfielder Danny Heep belted a game tying solo shot to lead off the inning.

     Kepshire shook off the misfortune and went back to work picking up two strikeouts in that inning.  After handing the ball over to the bullpen, Kepshire watched Rick Horton, Jeff Lahti, Ken Dayley, and Bill Campbell hold the Mets at bay. The Mets pen did the same to the Birds with Randy McDowell and Jesse Orosco getting the job done through the twelfth. McDowell even worked his way around a bases loaded with no outs in the ninth situation, however, the Mets could not build off the momentum builder.

     The Cardinals had stranded eight runners coming into the fateful thirteenth frame, but that would soon be forgotten, as they became accustomed to crossing the dish quite often. Doug Sisk took over mound duties for the Mets and was snake-bitten from the start, as his shortstop committed an error, helping Terry Pendleton get on base to lead off the inning.  Ozzie Smith moved Pendleton over on a groundout, before catcher Tom Nieto removed an 0 for 4 collar with a single to center to give the Cardinals a 2-1 lead. Tom Lawless pinch ran for Nieto, then scored after Sisk allowed a single to the Cardinals reliever Bill Campbell, and the line was starting to move. Vince Coleman got on with an infield single, Willie McGee walked to load the bases, Tommy Herr knocked in two runs, then moments late Jack Clark did the same. The six run outburst buried locals. Although, they attempted to a comeback of their own in the bottom off the inning by scoring a run off of Campbell. However, it was all they could muster, and the Cards trotted off the field with smiles on their faces.

     That was the first of a four game set in New York for the Cardinals, with the Birds taking three of the four. The heat was on and it would only get hotter down the stretch, as the Cardinals flew towards a pennant. That '85 club will forever be remembered in St. Louis as a high flying bunch that refused to lose.

Check out the box score here: http://www.baseball-reference.com/boxes/NYN/NYN198506070.shtml

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