BALTIMORE—Maybe a couple of months from now, the Mets will look back to this series as the one that defined their season. It may have only been a sweep in Baltimore, but the lone test the Mets hadn't passed this season was winning a road series. Now, the Mets have swept a road series, with their 11-4 win over the Orioles today.
It started out as a laugher for the Mets, as they scored five first inning runs off of Kevin Millwood. David Wright hit a two-run home run and the DH Chris Carter hit a three-run home run, his second of the series, putting the Mets up 5-0 before Mike Pelfrey even took the mound.
Once Pelfrey did take the mound, things didn't go too well. Handed a 5-0 lead, he gave two right back, laboring through most of the afternoon. His pitches were flat, and his back leg lagged for whatever reason.
In the second, the Orioles tacked on another run, making it 5-3. Pelfrey gave up three runs on five hits in the first two innings.
Jerry Manuel shook the lineup around today, playing Jesus Feliciano and Alex Cora. The guy who broke through in a big way was Jason Bay. He went 4-for-4 with a walk, an RBI, and four runs scored. One of his four hits was a home run to straight away center in the fifth, putting the Mets up 7-3.
After struggling mightily in the first two innings, and looking like he may surrender a 5-0 lead, Pelfrey settled down to not allow another run in his final four innings finishing with a quality start. His final line was six innings, three runs, nine hits, three walks, one strikeout, as he improved to 9-1 on the season.
David Wright hit another two-run home run in the sixth, his 12th of the season, as the Mets banged out 11 runs on 18 hits, en route to a convincing win.
Meanwhile for the Orioles, their woeful season continued. Kevin Millwood fell to 0-8, allowing eight runs on 11 hits, and three home runs in 5 1/3 innings. The Orioles fell to 17-46 on the season.
Pelfrey was taken out after six innings, and the three Mets relievers to follow him gave up only one run. All three—Jenrry Mejia, Ryota Igarashi, and Raul Valdes—pitched for the first time in the series.
The Mets have now won eight of the past nine and 15 of the past 20, which is the best record in baseball since May 22, to improve to 35-28 on the season.
They will attempt to continue their winning ways against the Indians starting on Tuesday with Johan Santana on the mound.
NL East standings (top 3 teams)
NY Mets 35-28 (1.5)
Philadelphia 32-29 (3.5)
Next series probable pitchers:
New York: Johan Santana (2010: 4-3, 2.96 ERA) vs. Cleveland: Justin Masterson (2010: 2-5, 4.74 ERA)
New York: Jon Niese (2010: 3-2, 3.61 ERA) vs. Cleveland: Mitch Talbot (2010: 7-4, 3.59 ERA)
New York: R.A. Dickey (2010: 4-0, 2.78 ERA) vs. Cleveland: Jake Westbrook (2010: 4-3, 4.62 ERA)
New York Mets:
June 15-17 @ Cleveland Indians
June 18-20 @ New York Yankees
June 15-17 vs. New York Mets
June 18-20 @ Pittsburgh Pirates