The Mets defeated the Philadelphia Phillies 6-1 on a cold windy and rainy Tuesday night at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, improving their record to 15-11, bringing New York within 2.5 games of the first place Atlanta Braves in the National League East.
First pitch was delayed an hour and a half due to the inclement weather. Mets lefty veteran Jonathon Niese dominated the divisional rival Phillies, tossing seven innings allowing just one run on five hits, striking out five batters while walking one, throwing three perfect innings to start the game. Niese got the win for the Mets, evening his record to 2-2 on the year. Cole Hamels took the loss for the Phillies dropping the lefty veteran’s record to 0-2.
The Mets and Phillies were both held scoreless in the first two innings. In the top of the third Mets shortstop Ruben Tejada led off the inning with a shot down the line in left field. The ball then hit off the stands in foul grand and bounced back into the field of play, allowing Tejada to advance to second. Jonathon Niese laid down a sacrifice bunt that advanced Tejada to third. Left fielder Eric Young Jr. struck out, but second baseman Daniel Murphy laced a single to right field, scoring Tejada to give the Mets a 1-0 lead, and extending his hitting streak to 10 games. On a wild pitch from Cole Hamels, Phillies catcher Carlos Ruiz threw out Murphy, trying to take second to retire the side. The Phillies were retired 1-2-3 in the bottom of the third.
In the top of the fourth third baseman David Wright crushed a ball to left, but the wind knocked it down and left fielder Dominic Brown caught it for the first out. Centerfielder Chris Young walked, and later advanced on a wild pitch from Hamels. Right fielder Curtis Granderson also walked. Josh Satin singled to center scoring Young and moving Granderson, making it 2-0 New York. Catcher Travis d’Arnaud struck out swinging for out number two. Cole Hamels then issued his third walk of the inning to Ruben Tejada to load the bases. Jonathan Niese walked extending the Mets lead to 3-0. With the bases still loaded, Eric Young Jr. struck out to retire the side.
After shortstop Jimmy Rollins flied out to left and second baseman Chase Utley flied out to right, Phillies right fielder Marlon Byrd demolished a pitch over the left field wall cutting the Mets lead to 3-1, the first hit of the night for the Phillies. First baseman Ryan Howard then lined a single to deep right, but Carlos Ruiz grounded out to second to end the inning.
In the top of the fifth Daniel Murphy singled to left to lead off. David Wright flew out to center for the first out of the inning. Murphy then stole second base, his sixth of the season and 29th consecutive successful attempt dating back to last season. Chris Young then doubled to deep right center, easily scoring Murphy extending the Mets lead to 4-1. Curtis Granderson grounded out to first, but Josh Satin was hit by a pitch and Travis d’Arnaud was walked, Hamels’ fifth of the night, to load the bases. Ruben Tejada singled to center scoring both Young and Satin, making it 6-1 New York.
Hamels’ rough night was done having allowed all six runs on eight hits, walking five batters. In came reliever Roberto Hernandez (formerly known as Fausto Carmona) who struck out Niese to retire the side. The Phillies were retired in order in the bottom of the fifth.
Neither team scored in the next two innings, and the Mets were retired 1-2-3 in the top of the eighth by reliever Jeff Manship. Daisuke Matsuzaka entered the bottom of the eighth to relieve Niese. Lucas Duda entered the game at first, after having pinch-hit for Niese in the top half of the inning. Infielder Cody Ashe pinch-hit for Manship. Ashe walked to start the bottom of the eighth. Centerfielder Ben Revere grounded into a fielder’s choice and Ashe was forced out at second. Jimmy Rollins struck out for out number two. Revere then stole second, the first time a Phillies’ runner was in scoring position all night. Chase Utley then flied out to left to end the inning.
The Mets went in order in the top of the ninth. Marlon Byrd grounded out to third to start the bottom half of the ninth. Ryan Howard followed by ripping a double to left. But Carlos Ruiz grounded out to short and Dominic Brown flied out to right to end the game.
Weather permitting the two teams will play each other again tomorrow with Mets veteran Bartolo Colon squaring off against Phillies ace Cliff Lee.
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