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’97 Marlins walk off ’69 Mets in Dream Bracket 2

@JoeFrisaro
May 22, 2020

The 1997 Marlins were walk-off winners in the first round of the MLB Dream Bracket 2: Dream Seasons tournament, eliminating the ’69 Mets in six games. The 2003 Marlins, however, were not as lucky, falling to the 1979 Pirates, 4-1. The series tested the depth and bullpens of both teams

The 1997 Marlins were walk-off winners in the first round of the MLB Dream Bracket 2: Dream Seasons tournament, eliminating the ’69 Mets in six games. The 2003 Marlins, however, were not as lucky, falling to the 1979 Pirates, 4-1.

The series tested the depth and bullpens of both teams as four of the six games reached extra innings, including a marathon close-out contest. Gary Sheffield scored the lone run of the game on a wild pitch in the 15th inning to advance Miami.

Box score and game summary

In the second round of the National League’s Region 1 bracket, the 1997 Marlins will face the ’84 Padres, who pulled off a stunning four-game sweep of the ’55 Dodgers. The general manager of the ’84 Padres was Jack McKeon, who later managed Miami to its 2003 World Series title.

Full bracket and info

The 64-team simulated competition, featuring many of the greatest teams in baseball history, is being produced by Out of the Park Baseball 21, MLB‘s most realistic strategy game (PC and Mac).

Complete Dream Bracket 2 rosters

The 1997 Marlins were no strangers to being extra-innings walk-off winners in real life, either. They famously won Game 7 of the World Series with a walk-off 3-2 win over the Indians in 11 innings.

Here’s how they accomplished taking down the 1969 Mets in six games of a best-of-seven:

Game 1: Marlins 4, Mets 3 (14 innings)
The pitching matchup featured Kevin Brown for the Marlins against Hall of Famer Tom Seaver. But both were long out of the game when the outcome was finally decided. Brown allowed three runs in seven innings, while Seaver was charged with three unearned runs in six frames. Devon White hit a go-ahead two-run double for the Marlins in the fifth inning, but the Mets tied it in the eighth. After Brown exited, Marlins relievers combined to toss seven shutout innings. Finally, in the 14th inning, Luis Castillo delivered the decisive single off Cal Koonce, bringing home Darren Daulton with the winning run. The game lasted five hours and five minutes at Joe Robbie Stadium in Miami.

Game 2: Marlins 6, Mets 2
A pair of left-handers were on the mound to start Game 2, and the Marlins’ Al Leiter had the better outcome of the two. He gave up two runs in 5 1/3 innings, and Miami’s bullpen didn’t yield a run in 3 2/3 innings. Meanwhile, Mets lefty Jerry Koosman was tagged for five runs in 5 2/3 innings. Moises Alou belted a two-run homer off Koosman in the first inning, while White went 3-for-5 with three runs scored. Charles Johnson added some insurance with a two-run double in the sixth.

Game 3: Mets 4, Marlins 3 (10 innings)
Facing the possibility of falling behind 3-0 in the series, the Mets turned the tables on the Marlins and picked up their first win. Leading off the 10th inning, Tommie Agee connected on a walk-off home run off Robb Nen at Shea Stadium. Sheffield hit a two-run homer for Miami in the sixth. Alex Fernández allowed three runs in six innings for the Marlins, and Al Jackson picked up the win in relief for the Mets. New York starter Gary Gentry helped himself at the plate with two hits and two runs scored.

Game 4: Marlins 9, Mets 3
The Marlins seized control of the series, going up three games to one, by using three home runs to power their way to a six-run win. Sheffield hit a solo homer in the first inning and Bobby Bonilla added another in the fourth. Both home runs were off Mets starter Don Cardwell, who gave up six runs in 4 1/3 innings. Charles Johnson broke the game open in the ninth with a three-run homer off Nolan Ryan. Marlins starter Livan Hernández allowed three runs in six innings.

Game 5: Mets 3, Marlins 2 (12 innings)
Facing elimination, the Mets prevailed in the 12th inning on Jerry Grote’s walk-off single, scoring Ed Kranepool, who had walked to lead off the frame. Pat Rapp suffered the loss for the Marlins, while Tug McGraw picked up the win for the Mets. Alou hit a two-run homer off Seaver in the fourth inning, and Sheffield went 3-for-5. Marlins starter Brown gave up two runs in five innings.

Game 6: Marlins 1, Mets 0 (15 innings)
It took five hours and 56 minutes for the outcome to be decided, but for the Marlins, it was worth the wait. Leiter struck out seven in seven shutout innings, and Miami’s bullpen yielded only one hit in the remaining eight. Koosman worked just 2 2/3 innings for the Mets, who ended up using nine pitchers. The game remained scoreless until the 15th inning, when Koone threw a wild pitch with Sheffield on third base. Sheffield raced home, and the Marlins clinched the series in walk-off fashion.

Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.