Remembering Mets History (1988): Straw Hits Another Walk Off HR Off John Franco
They would go on to win the NL Eastern Division in 1988. Tonight they hosted a good Cincinnati Reds team, that would finish second & in just two years win another World Championship.
The Reds Manager Pete Rose had just recently been suspended for an ugly incident in Cincinnati, in a game against the New York Mets.
On April 30th, a week prior, Rose had made contact with umpire Dave Pallone, eventually shoving him. The Reds fans showered the field with debris & Pallone was kept off the field for his safety with only three umpires being used the rest of the game. Former Reds / Astros infielder, Tommy Helms was now the acting manager.
22,857 fans came to see Dwight Gooden take on Dennis Rasmussem at Shea Stadium.
In the home 1st, Tim Teufel drew a walk & Keith Hernandez singled sending Teufel to third. A Darryl Strawberry sac fly made it 1-0. In the 5th inning, Strawberry drove in his second run of the game, after Keith Hernandez singled & stole second he scored on Straw's base hit.
Dwight Gooden pitched well not allowing any runs until the 7th. He would scatter eleven hits on the day, strike out five & walk two pitching a full nine innings. Dave Collins & Chris Sabo's RBI singles tied it in the 7th. Gooden got out of a 9th inning jam, as he got Barry Larkin to ground out with runners on second & third.
Randy Meyers came on in the 10th inning, and served up a lead off HR to Chris Sabo. John Franco was on the mound to save it for the Reds. Franco the future Mets All Star reliever & Brooklyn native, would lead the NL in saves that year with 39. He would lead the NL in saves two more times in his career as a member of the Mets.
But on this day, "it was de' ja vu all over again" as former Mets manager Yogi Berra would say, as Darryl Strawberry came up & blasted a walk off HR off Franco just as he did two years ago. This time there were two outs & Keith Hernandez on first base.
The 39 HRs tied a career high for him which he had done in 1987. In his career Straw would have just three walk off HRs in his Mets career.