for this game

Beltran homers twice as Mets hold off Nationals

Sep 18, 2008 - 4:50 AM WASHINGTON (Ticker) -- Nothing seems to come easy for the New York Mets, especially in September.

Carlos Beltran belted a pair of home runs and a suspect bullpen held on and helped the Mets snap a three-game skid by securing a 9-7 victory over the Washington Nationals on Wednesday.

Jose Reyes hit the 13th leadoff home run of his career, Carlos Delgado added a solo shot and rookie Daniel Murphy had an RBI triple for New York (84-67), which remained one-half game ahead of the Milwaukee Brewers (84-68) in the wild card race. The Brewers defeated the Chicago Cubs on Wednesday.

Mets manager Jerry Manuel was asked if he's ever had a tougher game to manage.

"No, I can't recollect, especially with what's at stake," said Manuel, who was forced to use a franchise-record-tying eight pitchers. "But we won, and that's what's important. We came away with a victory, and that's huge for us right now."

Even with a six-run lead, Manuel could not relax.

"No, I can't do that, they won't allow me to do that," Manuel said. "They'll make a laugher a tearjerker, that's what they'll do. Nah, I'm not enjoying this. Walking out there (to the mound) every three minutes.

"Nobody wants to come see me. Shoot, they come to see the guys play. I try to stay out of the way. This is not the way we drew it up, but we've got to do what we've got to do to win. We'll laugh about it hopefully in November sometime, but right now, no, we can't do that."

The Mets, who nearly squandered an 8-2 lead, also remained one-half game behind the Philadelphia Phillies (85-67) in the National League East.

It was a much-needed win for New York, which blew a seven-game lead with 17 to play last season and has many thinking it will collapse again. The Mets also held a 3 1/2-game lead a week ago, but dropped four of five and fell out of first place for the first time since August 26 on Tuesday.

"We needed the win," Beltran said. "There's no more options for us. Basically, every game counts."

"It wasn't pretty, but it worked," Delgado said.

The questions about last season will stop for at least one day thanks to Beltran, who broke an 0-for-10 slide by recording his third multi-home run game of the season and 25th of his career. He homered from both sides of the plate for the sixth time in his career.

His two-run shot highlighted a four-run, third inning and put the Mets up, 6-1. Reyes' RBI single in the fourth made it 7-1 and Marlon Anderson drove in a run in the sixth to make it 8-2.

However, the Nationals, who beat the Mets five times in six meetings last September, did not go quietly. Pinch hitter Alberto Gonzalez drove in a run in the sixth and Elijah Dukes belted a two-run shot in the seventh to make it 8-5.

Beltran responded with his second homer of the night - and 26th of the season - off Charlie Manning in the eighth.

"The first one was a fastball in the middle of the plate," Beltran said. "I'm not trying to hit home runs, it's just when you swing the bat well good things happen. The second one was a cutter in the middle of the plate."

Still, New York's much-maligned bullpen nearly blew its 28th save of the campaign.

Third baseman David Wright's error in the ninth led to Wil Nieves' two-run single off Joe Smith and caused Manuel to bring in former Nationals reliever Luis Ayala, who struck out pinch hitter Roger Bernadina to record his eighth save in 10 chances since becoming the Mets' closer.

Ayala saved the first career win for Brandon Knight (1-0), who allowed two runs and six hits in five innings. The 32-year-old journeyman, who pitched for the bronze medal-winning Team USA in the Beijing Summer Olympics, struck out five and walked four.

"Wow, it's taken this long, but it was all worth it," Knight said of getting his first major-league victory. "Basically, the whole game to me was all about our offense."

The Mets' offense, which scored just eight runs over the last five games, came to life against rookie Shairon Martis (0-3), who was making his third career start. Reyes homered to right-center to start the game and, three batters later, Delgado snapped out of an 0-for-8 slump by blasting his 36th homer to center.

Martis allowed six runs and five hits in three innings.

"You can only keep those guys down for so long," Nationals manager Manny Acta said. "When those guys are on, you just can't stop them."

Meanwhile, Manuel shouldn't have to make as many trips to the mound with ace Johan Santana scheduled to start on Thursday.

"Hopefully, tomorrow with Santana, nine innings, 170 pitches," Manuel said with a laugh. "We'll be all right."








  • NL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    NY METS 2 0 4 1 0 1 0 1 0 9 10 1
    WASHINGTON 0 1 0 1 0 1 2 0 2 7 14 0 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: NYM - BRANDON KNIGHT, RICARDO RINCON (6TH), BRIAN STOKES (7TH),
    AARON HEILMAN (8TH), SCOTT SCHOENEWEIS (8TH), JOE SMITH (8TH),
    PEDRO FELICIANO (9TH), LUIS AYALA (9T

    Sep 17 10:23 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY WIL NIEVES SCORED LASTINGS MILLEDGE AND ELIJAH
    DUKES.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, W NIEVES ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: NY METS 9
    WASHINGTON 7 BOTTOM, 9TH
    DUE UP FOR WASHINGTON: G MOCK (.000, 0 HR, 0 RBI)

    Mets 9, Nationals 7  Bot 9, 0 OutsSep 17 10:18 PM
  • 25
    roots
    bouch Added 5 roots

    Mets 9, Nationals 5  Bot 9, 0 OutsSep 17 10:17 PM
  • 20
    roots
    McTool Added 5 roots

    Mets 9, Nationals 5  Bot 8, 0 OutsSep 17 9:54 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY CARLOS BELTRAN (26) TO LEFT CENTER WITH 0
    OUT IN THE 8TH OFF CHARLIE MANNING.
    CURRENT SCORE: NY METS 9, WASHINGTON 5
    DUE UP FOR NY METS: R CHURCH (.286, 0-FOR-3)

    Mets 9, Nationals 5  Top 8, 0 OutsSep 17 9:33 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY ELIJAH DUKES (13) TO LEFT WITH 2 OUT IN
    THE 7TH OFF BRIAN STOKES SCORED CRISTIAN GUZMAN.
    CURRENT SCORE: NY METS 8, WASHINGTON 5
    DUE UP FOR WASHINGTON: K CASTO (.217, 1-FOR-2, BB, RBI)

    Mets 8, Nationals 5  Bot 7, 0 OutsSep 17 9:24 PM
  • 15
    roots
    Multiworld Added 5 roots

    Mets 8, Nationals 3  Top 7, 0 OutsSep 17 9:15 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY ALBERTO GONZALEZ SCORED EMILIO BONIFACIO.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, A GONZALEZ ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: NY METS 8
    WASHINGTON 3 BOTTOM, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR WASHINGTON: W HARRIS (.251, 1-FOR-2, BB)

    Mets 8, Nationals 3  Bot 6, 0 OutsSep 17 9:06 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    MARLON ANDERSON HIT INTO DOUBLE PLAY SCORING ARGENIS REYES.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, NONE ON, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: NY METS 8
    WASHINGTON 2 TOP, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR NY METS: J REYES (.300, 2-FOR-2, BB, HR, 2 RBI)

    Mets 8, Nationals 2  Top 6, 0 OutsSep 17 8:57 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY EMILIO BONIFACIO SCORED ELIJAH DUKES.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, E BONIFACIO ON FIRST, K CASTO ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: NY METS 7
    WASHINGTON 2 BOTTOM, 4TH
    DUE UP FOR WASHINGTON: W NIEVES (.250, 0-FOR-1)

    Mets 7, Nationals 2  Bot 4, 0 OutsSep 17 8:27 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY JOSE REYES SCORED BRIAN SCHNEIDER.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J REYES ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: NY METS 7
    WASHINGTON 1 TOP, 4TH
    DUE UP FOR NY METS: D MURPHY (.363, 1-FOR-2, RBI)

    Mets 7, Nationals 1  Top 4, 0 OutsSep 17 8:13 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY CARLOS BELTRAN (25) TO RIGHT WITH 1 OUT
    IN THE 3RD OFF SHAIRON MARTIS SCORED CARLOS DELGADO.
    CURRENT SCORE: NY METS 6, WASHINGTON 1
    DUE UP FOR NY METS: R CHURCH (.288, 0-FOR-1)

    Mets 6, Nationals 1  Top 3, 0 OutsSep 17 7:57 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY CARLOS DELGADO SCORED DAN MURPHY.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, C DELGADO ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: NY METS 4
    WASHINGTON 1 TOP, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR NY METS: C BELTRAN (.280, 0-FOR-0, BB)

    Mets 4, Nationals 1  Top 3, 0 OutsSep 17 7:55 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    TRIPLE BY DAN MURPHY SCORED JOSE REYES.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, D MURPHY ON THIRD, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: NY METS 3
    WASHINGTON 1 TOP, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR NY METS: D WRIGHT (.298, 0-FOR-1)

    Mets 3, Nationals 1  Top 3, 0 OutsSep 17 7:51 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY KORY CASTO SCORED LASTINGS MILLEDGE.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, K CASTO ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: NY METS 2
    WASHINGTON 1 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR WASHINGTON: E BONIFACIO (.239, 0 HR, 9 RBI)

    Mets 2, Nationals 1  Bot 2, 0 OutsSep 17 7:45 PM


  • NL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    NY METS 2 2 2 0
    WASHINGTON 0 0 0 (BOT 1)

    CURRENT PITCHERS: NYM - BRANDON KNIGHT
    WAS - SHAIRON MARTIS

    DUE UP FOR WASHINGTON: W HARRIS (.249, 13 HR, 43 RBI)
    C GUZMAN (.314, 9 HR, 53 RBI)
    R ZIMMERMAN (.284, 12 HR

    Mets 2, Nationals 0  Bot 1, 0 OutsSep 17 7:19 PM
  • 10
    roots
    Lemonman Added 5 roots

    Mets vs. NationalsSep 16 7:48 PM
  • 5
    roots
    MetsFan Added 5 roots

    Mets vs. NationalsApr 3 10:42 AM