Damion Easley hit a go-ahead home run off Justin Speier in the top of the 10th and Billy Wagner shut the door on the Angels with a 1-2-3 bottom half to give the Mets a 5-4 win on Wednesday night.
The win was Jerry Manuel's first as New York's manager after replacing the fired Willie Randolph yesterday.
Things looked grim for the Mets earlier. They were trailing by a run as the free-swinging Jose Reyes had two strikes on him with one out in the ninth. One of the league's top closers, Francisco Rodriguez, was standing on the mound. Coming into the game Rodriguez had converted 28 of 29 save opportunities.
However, Reyes slapped a 1-2 offering from Rodriguez over the head of second baseman Howie Kendrick for a single.
After "K-Rod" struck out Fernando Tatis, David Wright stepped to the plate with the game on the line. After Reyes advanced to second on a passed ball, Wright delivered a base hit, and Reyes scampered home to tie the game.
The Mets were put in the comeback position after Oliver Perez had one of his typical middle-inning implosions. Pitching with a 3-0 lead, Perez allowed a run in the fourth, followed by three more in the fifth.
Perez was bailed out of further damage when David Wright made a nice play to start an odd 5-2-4-6-5 double play to end the inning. Wright backhanded a grounder down the third base line and fired home to nail Vladimir Guerrero at the plate. Torii Hunter was caught in a rundown between second and third after forgetting the number of outs. After a flip from Reyes, Wright applied the tag to complete the double play.
Several positives in the game for the Mets included four shutout innings from the bullpen—one each from Joe Smith, Scott Schoeneweis, Duaner Sanchez, and Billy Wagner.
Jose Reyes did what he does best—setting the tone early for the Mets. Reyes led off the game with a single, and promptly stole second for his 26th steal of the year. He advanced to third on catcher Jeff Mathis' throwing error, and scooted home on a David Wright groundout.
Reyes continued to use his speed as he tripled in his next at bat and scored on Marlon Anderson's sacrifice fly.
Carlos Delgado added a solo home run, his 10th of the season.
The Mets have an off day Thursday after winning two of three in the series with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. New York will face the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field in a weekend series.
Player of the Game: Jose Reyes 3-5, triple, 3 runs, SB