Defense and Bullpen Lift Mets
By RICK FREEMAN AP Sports Writer
NEW YORK (AP) _ Eric Young made a diving catch to take a go-ahead hit away from Todd Helton in the sixth inning, then raced home with the tiebreaking run in the eighth, and the New York Mets beat the Colorado Rockies 3-2 on Tuesday night.
The Rockies have lost 12 of 18 since the All-Star break and have scored five runs in their last three games.
LaTroy Hawkins gave up a pair of two-out singles in the ninth before Ike Davis made a diving catch on Yorvit Torrealba’s sinking liner foul down the first base line. It was Hawkins first save since May 6, 2012, for the Angels.
Scott Atchison (2-0) pitched a scoreless eighth inning.
Eric Young led off the eighth with a single against Wilton Lopez (1-4). He was able to take second on Marlon Byrd’s deep fly, putting him in position to make it home on Juan Lagares’ infield single, a slow chopper to second base, that he just barely beat out.
Young sped up as he rounded third and beat the throw home. Lagares also hit a two-run triple in the first inning.
Mets starter Jenrry Mejia tied a season high with seven strikeouts, but left after 5 1-3 innings. He allowed a tying solo homer to pinch-hitter Chris Blackmon to lead off the sixth and nearly gave up the lead, too, after a long pause in the game when plate ump Manny Gonzalez was injured.
The umpire appeared to be hit in the jaw after a pitch from Mejia bounced up and hit him in the throat. Gonzalez was escorted off under his own power, but second base umpire Larry Vanover had to go change into protective gear to assume duties behind the plate.
Mejia only got one out after the interlude, though third baseman Wilmer Flores committed an error on a tough hop off the bat of Troy Tulowitzki and Michael Cuddyer walked. Carlos Torres came on with the bases loaded and retired Wilin Rosario on a pop fly to center too shallow to score a run before Young made his diving grab on Helton’s liner.
Flores was making his big league debut. He mostly played shortstop in the Mets system, but filled in at third because David Wright was hurt last weekend.
Chad Bettis, who made the start while Tyler Chatwood got pushed back a few days to let his tweaked hamstring rest, allowed two runs and four hits in five innings.
Lagares hit a two-out, two-run triple in the first inning to put the Mets up. Bettis settled down after that, and the Rockies got a run back for him in the fifth, when Rosario hit a leadoff single and scored on a sacrifice fly. Davis lifted his glove over Helton’s grounder to first base for an error, allowing Rosario to take third with nobody out. After he scored, D.J. LeMahieu hit into an inning-ending double play.
NOTES: Mets RHP Matt Harvey (8-3) is expected to face Rockies RHP Jhoulys Chacin (10-5) in Wednesday’s game. … Rockies OF Corey Dickerson has hit safely in six straight games. … Mets LHP Jonathon Niese struck out six and allowed two runs and four hits in five innings of a rehab start at Double-A Binghamton. … Lagares has 12 RBIs since the All-Star break.
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