2000 National League Division Series
The 2000 National League Division Series (NLDS), the opening round of the 2000 National League playoffs, began on Tuesday, October 3, and ended on Sunday, October 8, with the champions of the three NL divisions—along with a "wild card" team—participating in two best-of-five series. They were:
- (1) San Francisco Giants (Western Division champions, 97–65) vs. (4) New York Mets (Wild Card, 94–68): Mets win series, 3–1.
- (2) St. Louis Cardinals (Central Division champions, 95–67) vs. (3) Atlanta Braves (Eastern Division champions, 95–67): Cardinals win series, 3–0.
The higher seed (in parentheses) had the home field advantage (Games 1, 2 and 5 at home), which was determined by playing record. The Cardinals were awarded home field advantage rather than the Braves due to their 4–3 advantage in head-to-head play.
The Cardinals and Mets went on to meet in the NL Championship Series (NLCS). The Mets beat the Cardinals four games to one to advance to the 2000 World Series, where they would face the American League champion New York Yankees. With their division rival Atlanta Braves losing to the Cardinals, the Mets' run to the World Series became much easier.
San Francisco Giants vs. New York Mets
New York won the series, 3–1.
|1||October 4||New York Mets – 1, San Francisco Giants – 5||Pacific Bell Park||3:06||40,430|
|2||October 5||New York Mets – 5, San Francisco Giants – 4 (10 innings)||Pacific Bell Park||3:41||40,430|
|3||October 7||San Francisco Giants – 2, New York Mets – 3 (13 innings)||Shea Stadium||5:22||56,270|
|4||October 8||San Francisco Giants – 0, New York Mets – 4||Shea Stadium||2:48||56,245|
St. Louis Cardinals vs. Atlanta Braves
St. Louis won the series, 3–0.
|1||October 3||Atlanta Braves – 5, St. Louis Cardinals – 7||Busch Stadium (II)||3:34||52,378|
|2||October 5||Atlanta Braves – 4, St. Louis Cardinals – 10||Busch Stadium (II)||3:02||52,389|
|3||October 7||St. Louis Cardinals – 7, Atlanta Braves – 1||Turner Field||3:09||49,898|
San Francisco vs. New York
Game 1, October 4
| WP: Liván Hernández (1–0) LP: Mike Hampton (0–1)|
SF: Ellis Burks (1)
In the first ever playoff game at Pacific Bell Park, Giants Pitcher Liván Hernández allowed one run and five hits over a 7 2⁄3 inning effort, backed by a three-run home run by Ellis Burks as the Giants cruised to an easy 5–1 victory.
Game 2, October 5
| WP: Armando Benítez (1–0) LP: Félix Rodríguez (0–1) Sv: John Franco (1)|
NYM: Edgardo Alfonzo (1)
SF: J.T. Snow (1)
Behind strong pitching from Al Leiter and a two-run home run from Edgardo Alfonzo in the top of the ninth inning, the Mets carried a 4–1 lead into the last of the ninth. However, following a double by Barry Bonds and a single from Jeff Kent, pinch hitter J. T. Snow hit a towering three-run home run off of Mets reliever Armando Benítez to tie the game at four. The Mets would bounce back in the tenth inning, with Rookie Jay Payton singling home Darryl Hamilton with two out in the inning. The Giants would threaten again, and had the tying run on with two out and Bonds at the plate, but John Franco struck out Bonds looking on a wicked 3–2 changeup, giving the Mets a heart-stopping 5–4 victory and a 1–1 series moving to New York.
Game 3, October 7
| WP: Rick White (1–0) LP: Aaron Fultz (0–1)|
NYM: Benny Agbayani (1)
Giants starting pitcher Russ Ortiz stifled the Mets early, and had a no-hitter entering the sixth inning. He was staked to a 2–0 lead thanks to RBI singles from Bobby Estalella and Marvin Benard. In the sixth, the Mets broke through. Rookie Timo Pérez, forced into action due to a Game 1 injury to starting right fielder Derek Bell, blooped a single over third base to score Mike Bordick and put the Mets on the scoreboard.
Two innings later, with the Mets still down by one run, pinch hitter Lenny Harris barely beat out the return throw on what would have been an inning-ending double play. The Giants brought in closer Robb Nen, who had not blown a save since July to face Edgardo Alfonzo. However, Alfonzo ended that streak by ripping a double into the left field corner to score Harris and tie the game.
The game continued on into extra innings, where both teams mounted scoring threats, only to be turned away each time.
The game finally ended when Benny Agbayani blasted a home run into the left field bleachers with one out in the thirteenth inning, capping another memorable postseason game at Shea Stadium and putting the Mets ahead in the series two games to one.
Game 4, October 8
| WP: Bobby Jones (1–0) LP: Mark Gardner (0–1)|
NYM: Robin Ventura (1)
In perhaps the most unlikely great pitching performance in recent memory, Bobby Jones, the Mets' fourth starter, completely shut down the Giants offense, hurling a masterful one-hit shutout to clinch the series for the Mets. Mixing 85 MPH fastballs and 65 MPH curveballs, Jones thoroughly baffled Giant hitters all afternoon, setting down the side in order in eight of nine innings. Jeff Kent's leadoff double in the fifth inning would be the Giants' only hit. Jones would get all the offense he would need on Robin Ventura's two-run home run in the first inning. Jones got Barry Bonds to fly out to center to end the game, and set off a raucous celebration at Shea Stadium.
Mets announcer Bob Murphy would say following the final out,
|“||The Mets have never had a better ball game pitched in their 39-year history!||”|
The one-hitter set a Mets' record for fewest hits allowed in a post-season complete game, besting Jon Matlack's two-hitter in the 1973 NLCS. It was also the fewest hits allowed in a League Division Series complete game until Roy Halladay's no-hitter in 2010.
|New York Mets||2||2||1||0||2||1||0||1||2||1||0||0||1||13||30||0|
|San Francisco Giants||1||1||4||2||0||0||0||0||3||0||0||0||0||11||30||1|
|Total attendance: 193,375 Average attendance: 48,344|
St. Louis vs. Atlanta
Game 1, October 3
| WP: Mike James (1–0) LP: Greg Maddux (0–1) Sv: Dave Veres (1)|
STL: Jim Edmonds (1)
It was a poorly pitched game for both starters, both of whom would last four innings or less. Greg Maddux faced Rick Ankiel. In the bottom of the first, Maddux allowed four straight hits to lead off the inning. Then key errors allowed the floodgates to open as the Cardinals struck for five hits and six runs in the inning. But the Braves would make a game of it in the top of the third when Ankiel's control slipped away. He walked Maddux, then threw four wild pitches. The Braves would strike for four runs, a rally capped by Walt Weiss's two-run single. Jim Edmonds would homer to make it 7–4 Cardinals. After the fourth, Maddux was done. The Braves would rally in the ninth and put the tying runs on but would ultimately fall short. Mike James would get the win in relief of Ankiel. The most notable statistic of the game was the men left on base, as both teams stranded eleven men.
Game 2, October 5
| WP: Darryl Kile (1–0) LP: Tom Glavine (0–1)|
ATL: Andruw Jones (1)
STL: Will Clark (1), Carlos Hernández (1), Mark McGwire (1)
Tom Glavine faced Darryl Kile; Kile hoped to give the Cards a big 2–0 lead in the series. Things certainly didn't look good in the top of the first when the Braves scratched out two runs on a single and a groundout, but the Cardinals struck back against Glavine. Will Clark would hit a three-run homer in the bottom half to put the Cards up for good. Carlos Hernández homered in the second, then Ray Lankford's two-run double gave the Cardinals a commanding 7–2 lead in the third. Glavine was finished and the Braves would ultimately change pitchers five times. It was another bad outing by a Cy Young Award-winning pitcher. The Cardinals would go on to win 10–4 and take a 2–0 lead in the series.
Game 3, October 7
| WP: Britt Reames (1–0) LP: Kevin Millwood (0–1)|
STL: Fernando Viña (1), Jim Edmonds (2)
The Cardinals sent Garrett Stephenson to the mound to finish off the Braves. The Braves' last hope was Kevin Millwood. Fernando Viña's leadoff homer silenced the Atlanta crowd, aside from the thousands of Cardinals fans in attendance, in the first. Andrés Galarraga would single in a run to tie the game in the bottom half, but Millwood would also struggle, despite having pitched a one-hitter in the playoffs the year before. Jim Edmonds's two-run homer into the Atlanta bullpen in the third put the Cards in front for good. Edmonds' homer epitomized what they had done to the Braves throughout the series: barrage their bullpen with homers. Stephenson would leave the game due to tendinitis. Britt Reames won the game in relief as errors and a sloppy bullpen allowed four more runs. Both teams would change pitchers four times. Paul Bako would strike out to end the series. The Cardinals' win in Game 3 put the Braves out of the NLCS for the first time since 1991.
|St. Louis Cardinals||10||1||5||2||1||4||0||1||0||24||28||1|
|Total attendance: 154,665 Average attendance: 51,555|
- Chass, Murray (October 17, 2000). "From Wild Card to World Series". New York Times.
- The subway series: the Yankees, the Mets and a season to remember. St. Louis, Mo.: The Sporting News. 2000. ISBN 0-89204-659-7.
- "2000 NLDS - New York Mets vs. San Francisco Giants - Game 1". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
- "2000 NLDS - New York Mets vs. San Francisco Giants - Game 2". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
- "2000 NLDS - San Francisco Giants vs. New York Mets - Game 3". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
- "2000 NLDS - San Francisco Giants vs. New York Mets - Game 4". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
- "2000 NLDS - Atlanta Braves vs. St. Louis Cardinals - Game 1". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
- "2000 NLDS - Atlanta Braves vs. St. Louis Cardinals - Game 2". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
- "2000 NLDS - St. Louis Cardinals vs. Atlanta Braves - Game 3". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.