This Date in Mets History: 1986 – Mets Continue to Dominate with 11-0 2-hitter by El Sid
In Spring training, 1986, Davey Johnson said the Mets would dominate. On July 11, 1986, he appears to be right. The 1986 New York Mets are absolutely crushing the league. The Magic Number Countdown has already begun around the Tri-State Area with the Mets standing at 56-25, up 10 1/2 games, coming off a 5-1 win over Atlanta entering the 2nd game of a 4-game series at Shea.
On the mound for the Mets this evening is the 6’1” southpaw from Kaiser High School in Honolulu, Sid Fernandez. He is having a fantastic year, entering the game with an 11-2 record and a 2.89 ERA. Up to the plate for Atlanta walks shortstop Andres Thomas. El Sid readies, sets, and tosses it to Catcher Gary Carter. Thomas hits it, but hardly well, down the down the right field line. Right fielder Darryl Strawberry drifts into foul territory to make the 1st out of the day. Next up is left fielder Ken Griffey, who readies in the batters box. Sid unfortunately can’t place the ball in the strike zone, and the Senior walks. With center fielder Dale Murphy at the plate, Griffey steals 2nd base. Unfortunately, for the Braves, Murphy strikes out looking. 1st baseman Bob Horner looks to extend the inning for Atlanta, but the crafty lefty strikes him out as well to end the frame.
On the mound for the Braves is David Palmer, the 6’1” right-hander from Glen Falls High School in Upstate New York. With family in the stands, he is looking to succeed against the best team in baseball. Center fielder Lenny Dykstra, however, has other plans for the Glen Falls native. He leads off and immediately gets something going with a walk. 2nd baseman Wally Backman lays down a bunt…and a beautiful bunt it is down the 1st base line, sending Lenny down to 2nd and placing Backman at 1st with an infield single. The 3-hitter, 1st baseman Keith Hernandez, steps up looking to at least hit the ball on the ground to the right. He does so, grounding out to 2nd, moving the runners up 1 base each. Carter strides up looking to drive the runners in. Palmer, staring down at the future-hall-of-famer, checks the runners, and throws. Gary crushes it to deep left field, way back there and gone for a 3-run home run. Strawberry enters with the bases empty looking to tack on the lead. Palmer throws one inside and it nicks Straw, giving him 1st base. Left fielder George Foster, the underachieving 1982 free-agent, flies out to center. With 3rd baseman Ray Knight up, Straw steal 2nd. Knight, however, grounds out to 3rd, ending the threat to tack on more.
Sid gives up his 1st hit leading off the top of the 2nd, but gets the next 3 batters with ease.
The bottom half arrives and the Mets are looking to put this Palmer guy out of his misery. The shortstop for the day, Kevin Mitchell, unfortunately grounds one to short to open the frame up, but El Sid gets a hit up the middle for a single. Dykstra strikes out, though, leaving it to Backman to extend the inning. He hits it on the ground between 2nd and 1st, on its way through for a single. Sid rounds 2nd and heads all the way to 3rd on the play. Hernandez struts on up, and Palmer can’t take it anymore. He throws a hard one to the backstop, sending Backman down to 2nd but keeping the 220 lb Fernandez at 3rd. Hernandez walks, setting the stage for Gary Carter with the bases loaded. Can he deliver something even more magnificent than his 1st inning drive? Carter squares up and hit the ball down the left field line. Fair it’s gone, it is aaaaa…GRAND SLAM! A Grand slam for the Kid, and the Mets lead it 7-0. That’s the day for Palmer, as manager Chuck Tanner walks to the mound, calling for long-man Craig McMurtry. The Met fans are so juiced about the lead, they don’t care one bit when Darryl strikes out to end the inning.
While Sid gives up a double in the top of the 3rd, he is spotless the rest of the way. He also chips in a run-scoring double in the bottom half of the 3rd to make it 8-0. He goes 3 for 4 with 1 RBI and 2 runs scored. Dykstra adds a 2-run double in that 3rd to make it 10-0, and the Mets win the ball game, 11-0, in front of 39,924 New Yorkers. Knight adds an RBI single in the bottom of the 4th.
El Sid goes the full 9, giving up no runs, 2 hits, 3 walks, striking out 9. He is 12-2 with with a 2.67 ERA.
Palmer didn’t make it out of the 2nd.
Kid goes 2 for 5 with 2 runs scored and 7 RBI.
The team continues to dominate the rest of the way. In the Championship Series, They battle the Houston Astros to 6 games, overcoming Mike Scott and a 16-inning affair to make it to the World Series. After a 2-0 series hole against the Bosox, they fight in Fenway to take it to a 6th game at home. Down 5-3 with 2 out and 2 strikes on Gary Carter in the 10th inning, the Mets chip away until some costly mistakes by Boston lead to a tie game and a game 6 win for the Mets. They overcome a 3-0 Game 7 hole to win the 2nd World Series in franchise history.
The 1986 New York Mets.
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