Florida at New York

N.Y. Mets
W: R. Hernandez (7-6) L: P. Quantrill (2-2)
HR: FLA - M. Lowell (8)   NYM - None

Mets 5, Marlins 4

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports

NEW YORK -- After Florida's slender wild-card hopes were jolted Wednesday night when the New York Mets scored in the bottom of the ninth to beat the Marlins 5-4, outfielder Jeff Conine considered the condition of his team.

The Marlins have lost six of seven games, and with Houston and Philadelphia both winning Wednesday night, Florida fell four games behind the Astros and two behind the Phillies in the National League wild-card race with 10 games to play.

"We're basically down to our last gasp," Conine said.

And it may have to come without slugger Miguel Cabrera, who was forced to leave the game in the first inning after fouling a ball off his left knee.

Cabrera, the league's third-leading hitter at .321, completed the at-bat by striking out, but left the game with a contusion to his knee. That left the Marlins with three regulars out of the lineup as second baseman Luis Castillo (hamstring) and shortstop Alex Gonzalez (elbow) are also sidelined.

Cabrera was limping in the clubhouse and said he did not know if he could play Thursday against New York in what amounts to a must-win game for the Marlins.

"You see what we're putting out there," manager Jack McKeon said, referring to the makeshift lineup because of the injuries. "Give them credit. They're scraping and scraping. We were just one hit away, which has basically been the story of our season, one hit away from breaking some games open."

Still, he remained hopeful.

"We're still breathing," McKeon said. "We've got to get some production. We've got to win them all."

Roberto Hernandez (7-6) dodged a bases-loaded jam in the top of the ninth when Mike Lowell, who had homered and singled, grounded out, ending the inning.

The Mets then pushed across the winning run against reliever Paul Quantrill (2-2) when Jose Reyes singled and reached second on an error by center fielder Juan Pierre and Miguel Cairo followed with a single to center.

"I saw him kick the ball when I got to first base," Reyes said. "When I saw that, I'm going, no doubt about that. Put myself in scoring position. I run hard out of the box every time. You never know what might happen with the ball."

That is manager Willie Randolph's style.

"It sets the tone when you run hard out of the box," Randolph said. "We stressed that from Day One in spring training. That was a perfect example of why we do what Jose did. We want that reputation."

Florida took a 4-3 lead on RBI singles by pinch-hitters Lenny Harris and Josh Willingham in a bizarre eighth inning that was delayed 12 minutes by a light failure at Shea Stadium.

Four banks at the far end of the right-and left-field stands, consisting of between 25 and 30 lights each, went out with Carlos Delgado batting. When play resumed, Delgado was struck out by reliever Tim Hamulack.

"It's a big-league stadium," McKeon said. "Give us big-league lights. Everybody in the top deck had cigarette lighters."

Mets closer Braden Looper then got his eighth blown save of the season when he walked Paul Lo Duca and surrendered hits to Lowell and Harris, the all-time leader in pinch hits with 209 in 17 major-league seasons.

Shingo Takatsu relieved Looper and Willingham singled home the go-ahead run.

The Mets came right back in the bottom of the inning as Carlos Beltran led off with a walk and Cliff Floyd singled against reliever Ron Villone. Antonio Alfonseca relieved and struck out David Wright but Mike Piazza followed with a single, tying the game at 4.

Lowell tied it at 2 in the fourth with his eighth homer. He had been slated to make his first career start at second base but never got there, moved to his familiar spot at third base when Cabrera was forced to leave the game.

Cabrera's early departure came back to haunt the Marlins in the seventh. Hits by Pierre and Conine put runners at first and third with two outs. Cabrera's No. 3 spot in the batting order was due up but rookie callup Joe Dillon, who replaced him, flied to right.


Former New York State Athletic commissioner and light heavyweight champion Jose Torres was a press box visitor. ... Batting against an overshifted infield in the third, Delgado tapped a ball down the third-base line and beat it out, but he took a wide turn and was thrown out trying to get back to first base.

Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
Players of the Game
New York

J. Reyes
AB 5
R 2
H 2
HR 0

M. Lowell
AB 5
R 2
H 2
HR 1

Related Video

Florida Marlins
Juan Pierre, CF4120003 .270
Jeff Conine, LF4020001 .312
Miguel Cabrera, 3B1000011 .321
    Joe Dillon, 2B3000003 .174
Carlos Delgado, 1B4021110 .306
Juan Encarnacion, RF4020100 .292
Paul Lo Duca, C3000104 .290
    Alex Gonzalez, PR0100000 .264
    Matt Treanor, C0000100 .200
Mike Lowell, 2B-3B5221004 .234
Robert Andino, SS3010000 .190
   a- Lenny Harris, PH1011000 .302
    Mike Mordecai, SS0000000 .000
Jason Vargas, P2010011 .292
   b- Jeremy Hermida, PH1000000 .182
    Randy Messenger, P0000000 .500
   c- Josh Willingham, PH1011000 .364
    Ron Villone, P0000000 .000
    Antonio Alfonseca, P0000000 .000
    Paul Quantrill, P0000000 .000
a-singled for Andino in the 8th
b-grounded out for Vargas in the 7th
c-singled for Messenger in the 8th
2B - Jeff Conine (19, Hernandez), Robert Andino (3, Seo)
HR - Mike Lowell (8, Seo)
SH - Juan Pierre (8), Jeff Conine (2), Joe Dillon (1)
RBI - Carlos Delgado (110), Mike Lowell (57), Lenny Harris (8), Josh Willingham (2)
2-OUT RBI - Carlos Delgado (47), Mike Lowell (23), Lenny Harris (2), Josh Willingham (2)
SB - Juan Pierre (52, 2nd base off Seo/Piazza), Juan Encarnacion (6, 2nd base off Seo/Piazza)
Team LOB - 12
Outfield Assists - Juan Encarnacion 1
E - Juan Pierre (4, Bobbled batted ball)
Florida Marlins
Jason Vargas 6733260 4.39
Randy Messenger 1000010 4.41
Ron Villone0111100 4.50
Antonio Alfonseca (BS,2) 1100010 3.55
Paul Quantrill (L,2-2) 0.1210000 5.37
Pitches-Strikes - Jason Vargas 91-64, Randy Messenger 15-12, Ron Villone 7-3, Antonio Alfonseca 18-12, Paul Quantrill 13-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jason Vargas 5-6, Antonio Alfonseca 2-0, Paul Quantrill 1-0
Batters Faced - Jason Vargas 26, Randy Messenger 3, Ron Villone 2, Antonio Alfonseca 4, Paul Quantrill 3
New York Mets
Jose Reyes, SS5220000 .275
Miguel Cairo, 2B5021011 .244
Carlos Beltran, CF3111101 .270
Cliff Floyd, LF4010022 .276
David Wright, 3B4110013 .310
Mike Piazza, C2121200 .258
    Gerald Williams, PR0000000 .250
    Roberto Hernandez, P0000000 .000
Victor Diaz, RF4011014 .259
Mike Jacobs, 1B4011015 .279
Jae Seo, P2000010 .077
    Juan Padilla, P0000000 .000
   a- Marlon Anderson, PH1000010 .256
    Tim Hamulack, P0000000 .000
    Braden Looper, P0000000 .000
    Shingo Takatsu, P0000000 .000
    Ramon Castro, C1000000 .255
a-struck out for Padilla in the 7th
2B - Mike Jacobs (6, Vargas)
RBI - Miguel Cairo (16), Carlos Beltran (71), Mike Piazza (58), Victor Diaz (37), Mike Jacobs (15)
2-OUT RBI - Victor Diaz (12)
SB - Jose Reyes 2 (57, 2nd base off Vargas/Lo Duca, 3rd base off Vargas/Lo Duca)
Team LOB - 8
DP - Reyes-Cairo-Jacobs
New York Mets
Jae Seo 6822121 2.38
Juan Padilla (H,3) 1200000 2.03
Tim Hamulack (H,1) 0.1000010 5.40
Braden Looper (BS,8) 0.1222100 3.94
Shingo Takatsu 0.1100000 5.29
Roberto Hernandez (W,7-6) 1100200 2.51
IBB - Delgado by Roberto Hernandez
Pitches-Strikes - Jae Seo 103-71, Juan Padilla 11-10, Tim Hamulack 9-6, Braden Looper 15-7, Shingo Takatsu 6-5, Roberto Hernandez 22-11
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jae Seo 5-9, Juan Padilla 2-1, Braden Looper 1-0, Shingo Takatsu 1-0, Roberto Hernandez 2-1
Batters Faced - Jae Seo 25, Juan Padilla 5, Tim Hamulack 1, Braden Looper 4, Shingo Takatsu 2, Roberto Hernandez 6
Game Information
Attendance - 36793
Game Time - 3:14
Temperature - 80
Umpires - Home - Bob Davidson, First Base - Dana DeMuth, Second Base - Marty Foster, Third Base - Lazaro Diaz