|T.C.'s nuisance: Cecil Fielder of Mexico City.|
Dwight Gooden would hold down the Tigers for the most part in this one, facing off again Dave LaPoint who did his part in this game to keep T.C. in it.
Bottom of the 1st
Pete O'Brien hits a two-out solo HR to right, for early blood. Traverse City 1, Mexico City 0
Bottom of the 3rd
Pete O'Brien strikes again for the Tigers, this time hitting a single to right, moving Tim Raines into scoring position at third, Raines drew a one-out walk. Paul Molitor would hit a ball right back to the mound, which would ricochet off Gooden's glove, Raines scores, Gooden recovers the ball and throws it to first in time to get Molitor, O'Brien would move up to second, two outs. Bob Boone fails to do anything more for T.C. this inning has he flies to right for final out. Traverse City 2, Mexico City 0
Top of the 6th
Tony Fernandez smokes a liner to center that badly fooled Lance Johnson in center, and goes over his head, Fernandez makes it all the way to third, a big lead-off triple to start the inning for Mexico City, who have had no real luck against Dave LaPoint up to this point of the game. The Tigers believe they don't want anything to do with Barry Bonds, so they intentionally walk him to face Kevin Mitchell. LaPoint gets Mitchell to pop out behind first to Barrett, one out. Infield at double play depth, Kelly Gruber hits one hard to Molitor, Molitor will go to first, and that's two down, but a run scores as Bonds moves up to second. Cecil Fielder would line it to left, Raines had himself positioned perfectly, for the third out.
Traverse City 2, Mexico City 1
Juan Agosto would pitch two scoreless innings for the Tigers in relief, allowing only one hit, with one K.
Top of the 9th
The Tigers' bats could not give their pitching any extra insurance -- only 4 hits (2 of them by Pete O'Brien). The Tigers will go with their closer Doug Jones (33 Saves). Kevin Mitchell leads off by hitting a dribbler to the left of the mound, Rafael Ramirez runs over, picks it up and throws all in one motion, but the ball goes only about three feet! Mitchell is safe, on a error, E-6. Mexico City goes to their bench, and has the speedy Henry Cotto to pinch-run for Mitchell. Cotto ends up stealing base #23 for the season, on a strong throw by Bob Boone. No outs, the pitch to Kelly Gruber, and it's rocketed down the first base line, O'Brien knocks it down, Cotto makes it to third, as Gruber pulls into first safely! Cecil Fielder who continues to be a nuisance for the Tigers lines it hard to deep center, it's a tweener, it one-hops the wall, Barfield is up with it, Cotto scores, tie-game, Gruber is around third, the Tigers' O'Brien cuts off the throw and throws it to third & he's out. He decided to let the go-ahead run score for the trade of an out, the first out. This is Jones' 4th blown save of the season, he would settle down and get the next two batters.
Mexico City 3, Traverse City 2
Bottom of the 9th
The Chihuahuas stick with Dwight Gooden, he gets the first two outs. Jesse Barfield steps up to the plate, gives this ball a deep ride to the right field wall, Dykstra catches it, and that's it. Mexico City comes up big in the 9th, and once again plays spoiler! Cedar Park fans elsewhere have to be really excited about this, as Mexico City enters the last game of this series up 4 games-to-2.
Gooden records his 9th win, improving his record to 9-8, he had only 4 K's, but at the same time only allowed 4 hits in this complete-game victory.
FINAL SCORE: Mexico City 3, Traverse City 2
Neither starting pitcher Bob Walk (Mexico City) or John Candelaria (Traverse City) would do their jobs in this one, as it's back & forth between both teams' lineups.
Mexico City had a 3-1 lead entering bottom of the 3rd, after a two-run HR by Harold Reynolds, Tigers would notch one in bottom of 3rd, and would load the bases & take the lead 5-3 in the 4th with a bunch of scattered hits.
Mexico City then reclaimed the lead with 4 runs in the top of the 6th (7-5), Tigers score two in bottom of 6th to tie, with Mexico City once again countering this time with 2 runs during the top of the 7th. I would report on a lot of this, but that's just it, not a game built on homers, but plenty of offense, the teams by the end of this game would combine for 26 hits (16 by Traverse City).
|Molitor continues his 1988 heroics for T.C.|
Bottom of the 9th
Tim Burke in to close out the game, up 9-7. Dave Winfield steps up & draws the walk, Burke is standing there as to be expecting a strikeout call instead. Tigers pinch-run Joe Carter for Winfield. Paul Molitor grounds out, moves Carter up to second, one away. Burke delivers the pitch to Mookie Wilson, and the ball is to the screen, it got past John Marzano behind the plate, Carter reaches third on the passed ball. Mookie hits one down the right field line, Carter scores easily, and Wilson will reach second on a double & RBI, down by one, with one out. Mexico City goes to the pen for Duane Ward (3.71 ERA). The Tigers call on Johnny Ray to pinch-hit for Ron Hassey, but he strikes out for out number two. The Tigers decide to yank Marty Barrett out for Ernest Riles to bat lefty against right Ward. Riles finds his pitch, hits this one down the right field line, Wilson is around third, their waving him in, the throw is coming to the plate, and he's in safe standing! Tie game for Tigers, 9-9! Rafael Ramirez steps up to the plate, and Ward throws it over the catcher's head, Riles is to second on the wild pitch, the winning run is on second base. Now Mexico City has decided to intentionally walk Ramirez, to face the weak-hitting Lance Johnson. Tigers go to the bench for Jesse Barfield instead, comes to the plate, the pitch by Ward, Barfield turns the ball around, Phil Bradley in center is giving chase, really stretches to snag this one, with most of the ball still showing in his glove -- he really had to reach over his shoulder for that one, big athletic display by Bradley, we'll see that one in the highlight reels, a good run by Bradley as well. This one is knotted up & going to extras...
Traverse City 9, Mexico City 9
Top of the 10th
Brian Holton for the Tigers sends the Chihuahuas down 1-2-3 in order, making it a strong 3.1 innings in relief for T.C.
Bottom of the 10th
Duane Ward still in there for Mexico City, sets up, delivers, it's a base hit to right field for Tim Raines -- Raines' second hit of the game, he has been hit in two times by his teammates. Pete O'Brien hits a soft liner that lands in the gap, Raines rounds second & slides in ahead of the throw, no outs. Mexico City goes to the bullpen and calls on Jose Alvarez -- Alvarez enters with a stingy 1.57 ERA. Alvarez will face off against Joe Carter, the pitch, he draws a walk... no wait, it caught the outside corner, Carter can't believe it, one out. Paul Molitor comes to the plate, Molitor sends a blooper just over Tony Fernandez's glove, Carter is well around third, and this will do it! Tigers win in extras, 10-9! Walk-off single by Molitor.
FINAL SCORE: Traverse City 10, Mexico City 9 (10 Innings)
SERIES: Mexico City defeats Traverse City, 4-3.