The New York Mets got stellar performances from Johan Santana and David Wright Friday night, as they led the entire game, by varying scores, and eventually beat the Philadelphia Phillies by a score of 6-4.
Santana was absolutely amazing Friday. He went seven plus, allowing only four hits and striking out 10. Santana did not issue a walk, using 105 pitches, 70 of which went for strikes. He set down two batters on strike outs in the first, second, third and fourth innings. He gave up one hit in the second, a single to Pat Burrell and did not allow another until the seventh. Chase Utley led off the seventh inning with a solo home run to center. He then allowed two straight hits to lead off the eighth inning before he was pulled. He was pegged with three earned runs, but two of them came with Aaron Heilman pitching.
I must sound like a broken record, but what more can you ask from him? 10 strike outs. Insane. This was a pitchers duel, even though I didn't think it was going to be, especially in Citizens Bank Park. Simply amazin' from Johan.
Heilman entered the game with two on in the eighth inning, and facing pinch hitter Greg Dobbs. Here's what I wrote in my live game thread: "95 mph fastball from Heilman for his first pitch to Dobbs, pinch hitting. Second pitch from Heilman is taken DEEP to right for a three run home run. 5-4 Mets. Ugh! Heilman will never, ever be a closer for that reason." As mentioned earlier, the two runners were charged to Santana, and the one run (Dobbs) was obviously charged to Heilman. He stayed in the game, getting pinch hitter Geoff Jenkins to fly out to the warning track and Jayson Werth on a ground out to Luis Castillo. Pedro Feliciano entered the game for one batter, striking out Utley to end the inning.
I don't know what is going on with Heilman. He goes a few games without giving up a run, then goes on a streak of allowing them to score in bunches, the next few games after that he shuts them out. Heilman is a roller coaster, that's the easiest way to put it. Feliciano, facing only one batter, did his job tonight. Good stuff.
Billy Wagner entered the game, looking for the save. He put down the Phillies in order, getting a comebacker from Ryan Howard, a fly out from Pat Burrell, and a ground ball from Pedro Feliz to end the game. This was Wagner's third save of the season.
Wagner is still yet to allow a hit this season. Keep on truckin' Wagner.
The Mets picked up 11 hits, with three extra base hits coming from David Wright, who finished the game a home run shy of the cycle, going 4-4.
For the second straight game, the Mets got on the board early, as they scored in the first inning. Ryan Church walked with one out and moved to second during Wright's at bat on a passed ball. Wright golfed one deep to left, hitting off the top of the wall for a double. Church scored easily.
That left field wall is unbelievably short. It's no wonder the Phillies hit so many home runs.
The Mets had a bit of a scare in the third inning, but let out a huge sigh of relief and eventually scored in the inning. With one out, Hamels walked Jose Reyes on four pitches. Church flew out, so there were two away with Wright at the plate. Reyes attempts a steal and gets in there safe. As he is sliding though, he is kneed in the head by Utley. Here, again, is what I wrote in my live game:
"Trainers are out there, and they're checking for concussions. They're dilating his pupils with a pen light. A concussion would knock him out for about two weeks. He's also holding his mouth, as he probably ate a ton of dirt on that play. Reyes does not want to come out of the game, as he's standing around second trying to work it off. Just read "Oh come on!" off the lips of Reyes. Willie Randolph and Ray Ramirez are trying to coax him out. Surprisingly, Reyes is staying in."It paid off for the Mets, as Wright cracked a line drive to center field. Werth made a diving attempt at the ball, but couldn't come up with it as it rolled to the wall in center. Reyes trotted home easily and Wright coasted into third with a stand up triple.
This was when you knew Wright was going to have a huge night. Very scary moment for Reyes, as I was almost positive he would leave the game and hit the DL with a concussion of some level. Reyes pleaded his case and stayed in for the entire game. Whew!
The eighth inning was a big one for the Mets, as they scored three runs. The inning started with a single from Church down the right field line. Wright followed it up with another double, his second of the game. After an intentional walk to Carlos Beltran, the Phillies brought in J.C. Romero to face Carlos Delgado. Delgado was 1-13, a .077 AVG against Romero, so a good matchup for the Phils. Delgado grounded a ball to Howard, who thought about coming home, but bobbled it forcing his play. Church scored without a throw. Pagan then blooped a hustle double to left, which brought home Wright. Brian Schneider had a nice night, going 3-4, adding a single here and driving in his only run as Beltran crossed the plate for the final Mets run of the inning. The Mets added an insurance run in the top of the ninth inning, as Church scored on Delgado's bases loaded sacrifice fly.
Church and Wright seem to have something brewing at the top of the order. Please, Willie, don't mess with it. Nice inning here. Taking advantage of key opportunities, something this squad needs to do a lot more.
Numbers - Wright: 4-4, 1 BB, 2 RBI, 1 run...Church: 2-4, 1 BB, 3 runs...Delgado: 2 RBI...Pagan and Schneider: 1 RBI...Reyes: 0-4, 1 BB, 1 run, 1 SB...Santana: 3 K's...Team LOB: 9...1: Mets place in the standings...
Game ball: Santana and Wright, without a doubt.
Beardless watch: 7-2.