Braves defeat Mets
4 games to 2
|Game||Date||Winning Team||Losing Team|
|1||Oct. 12||ATL 4||NYM 2|
|2||Oct. 13||ATL 4||NYM 3|
|3||Oct. 15||ATL 1||NYM 0|
|4||Oct. 16||NYM 3||ATL 2|
|5||Oct. 17||NYM 4||ATL 3|
|6||Oct. 19||ATL 10||NYM 9|
Managers: Cox, Bobby, ATL; Valentine, Bobby, NYM
MVP: Perez, Eddie
NLDS: Atlanta 3, Houston 1; New York 3, Arizona 1
The Braves were the team of the '90s -- at least in the National League. Their eighth NLCS appearance during this decade resulted in another pennant, as they beat the Mets in six. Atlanta was a World Series team in '91, '92, '95, '96 and now, after a two-year hiatus, '99.
The only question was whether they could claim that overall MLB nickname, because the Yankees were getting it done in the biggest event, and they would loom as Atlanta's opponent again in the last World Series of the millennium.
This NLCS was a rematch of the first, back in 1969, won by the Amazin' Mets on their way to their first World Series. It was played against a tense backdrop, dating back to September, when the Braves had beaten the Mets in five of six.
Atlanta proceeded to win the first three games; Game 3 was a memorable pitcher's duel in which the only run scored was in the first inning on a walk and a pair of errors. Tom Glavine got that win, and John Rocker, booed by Mets fans who refused his request to "shut up," got the save. Rocker then gave up a two-run single to John Olerud in Game 4, and that set the stage for a postseason classic.
Game 5 lasted 5 hours and 46 minutes, at that point the longest in postseason history by elapsed time. No team would come back from 3-0 until Boston in 2004, but these Mets showed heart. In the bottom of the 15th inning, Robin Ventura hit his famous "grand slam single" to keep New York alive with a 4-3 victory.
Keith Lockhart had tripled home the go-ahead run for Atlanta in the top of that inning, and Atlanta was on the brink of clinching. In the bottom of the 15th, Olerud was walked to load the bases, and with one out, reliever Kevin McGlinchy blew the save by walking Todd Pratt. That brought up Ventura, who sent a 2-1 pitch over the wall in right. On his way to second base, Ventura was tackled by Pratt and then mobbed by teammates who poured out of the dugout. It went down as a single, since he never touched all the bases, but it was still one of the biggest ever.
Back in Atlanta for Game 6, the Braves survived another relentless effort by the Mets, clinching in the bottom of the 11th when Kenny Rogers walked Andruw Jones to force in Gerald Williams with the winning run. The Braves, who had built a seemingly sure 3-0 series lead, may have spent every ounce of energy they had in putting away the Mets -- and it may have cost them in their subsequent series against the other New York team. Meanwhile, the Mets were lauded back home for their competitive fire, and they set the stage for a continued storyline with Atlanta the following season.