NATIONAL LEAGUE ROUNDUP : Strawberry Slams Giants, 12-2; Mets Within 1 1/2

From Associated Press

Sid Fernandez struck out a season-high 12 and Darryl Strawberry put the game away with a grand slam in the eighth inning Thursday, leading the New York Mets past the San Francisco Giants at New York, 12-2.

Howard Johnson hit a three-run homer and Gregg Jefferies added a two-run shot as the Mets trimmed the idle Pittsburgh Pirates’ lead in the East to 1 1/2 games. The victory also improved the Mets’ record at Shea Stadium to, 43-22, best home mark in the major leagues.

“We have to play well enough at home to get back on top,” Strawberry said who hit his fourth career grand slam and the fifth grand slam by the Mets this season. Strawberry, who drove in five runs, has 29 homers and 85 RBIs.


The loss dropped the Giants 8 1/2 games behind Cincinnati in the West, but Manager Roger Craig said his team isn’t ready to be counted out.

“Time is running out and we have to put a streak together,” he said. “We’re still in the pennant race.”

Fernandez (9-10) struck out every Giants starter except Will Clark and fanned Greg Litton and Matt Williams three times each. The left-hander’s previous high in strikeouts this season was 10.

Cincinnati 6, Chicago 5--The Reds’ title hopes got a boost when Danny Jackson, who was sidelined because of a partially torn rotator cuff, returned from the disabled list and pitched the Reds over the Cubs at Chicago.

Jackson (5-2) gave up four runs and eight hits over five innings in his first start since July 12. The left-hander also tripled home a run.

Rob Dibble pitched 2 2/3 innings and Randy Myers got the last three outs for his 27th save in 31 appearances.

St. Louis 5, Atlanta 3--Pinch-hitter Terry Pendleton snapped a 12th-inning tie with a sacrifice fly and Dave Collins added a run-scoring single to give the Cardinals a victory over the Braves at Atlanta.

A crowd of only 3,672 showed up for the first appearance of Joe Torre, former Braves’ manager, at Atlanta Stadium since he was fired following the 1984 season. Torre was hired Aug. 1 as manager of the Cardinals, replacing Whitey Herzog, who resigned.