Friday, June 23, 2017

Montreal takes 3 playoff atmosphere games against the Braves, as the fading 'Spos get their mojo back.

Game 1 saw Mr. Scoops hit a solo shot off of Phil Niekro to break a 2-2 tie in the 6th.  Charlie Lea continued along fine until the 8th when Jeff Reardon had to come in from the pen to get the final out.  What a wild and tense atmosphere !!!

Game 2 featured Scott Sanderson as the unlikely hero.  Not for his mound presence, but for his bat.  Tied 3-3 heading into the 7th he hit a lead off double off of reliever Gene Garber.  Rock Raines would single and steal second to put runners on 2nd and 3rd.  Cromartie grounded out to second, but with the drawn in IF Sanderson was held up.  Hawk Dawson blasted a sac fly to right to make it 4-3.  Fryman took over for Sanderson in the 9th, but had to be removed with 2 outs for Reardon who threw 4 pitches to get PH Jerry Royster to fly out weakly to center.

Game 3 showcased 20 game winner Steve Rogers pitching 10 innings to up his record to 21-5 (1.85).  Rogers was lifted for pinch hitter Wallace Johnson in the bottom of the 10th.  Johnson singled to lead off the inning and moved to second on Raines slow roller.  Warren Cromartie lined an oppo single to easily score Johnson and award the Spos, who've lost their last 2 series a much need sweep.  Atlanta (63-73) played like a division champ in this 3 game set that felt more like an NLCS than 3 games in early September.
 
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Expos Manager Weiss pictured with his mentor Phil Niekro almost 35 years after this 1982 series.  Photo taken during a private tour of the HOF.
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