New York at Florida

Scoreboard
N.Y. Mets «0000001416130
Florida2020000004100

Mets cut magic number to three, snap Braves' title run

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
  •  

MIAMI -- Carlos Delgado dealt a blow to Florida's wild-card hopes and moved the Mets closer to wrapping up their long-awaited NL East title. More notable, the Mets 6-4 victory eliminated the Braves from the NL East race, ending Atlanta's record run of 14 consecutive division titles.

Delgado -- who has never been to the postseason -- hit a game-tying three-run homer in the eighth inning and Cliff Floyd's RBI double put New York ahead to stay in a rain-delayed game Tuesday night.

The Mets trimmed their magic number for winning the NL East to three. They could clinch their first division title since 1988 on Wednesday with a victory over Florida and an Atlanta sweep in its doubleheader against Philadelphia.

"It will be exciting when it happens," Delgado said. "It's been a great year and we're all looking forward to that moment."

The Mets trailed 4-1 entering the eighth before rallying with four runs. Florida could have moved within a game of the NL wild-card lead because San Diego lost 5-4 in 11 innings at Cincinnati. Instead, the Marlins remained two games back with 17 remaining.

"It's a tough loss," Marlins manager Joe Girardi said. "We need to bounce back tomorrow. Obviously, we still have a chance to do what we set out to do and that's win the series. But it's a tough loss."

A trio of former Marlins -- Floyd, Delgado and Paul Lo Duca -- combined for seven hits, and David Wright added three hits and two runs scored for New York.

"We're inching closer to the playoffs," Floyd said. "It's been a long time for this organization. Everybody is excited about getting to the postseason."

Endy Chavez drew a bases-loaded walk in the ninth for an insurance run, and Billy Wagner got three outs for his 37th save in 42 chances. He struck out Miguel Cabrera with two on to end it.

Guillermo Mota (2-0) pitched a scoreless seventh for the win and Aaron Heilman worked the eighth to set up Wagner.

Josh Willingham had three hits, including his 24th home run, for the Marlins. Wes Helms had two RBI for Florida, which got five shutout innings from Josh Johnson -- who hasn't allowed a run in 17 innings against the Mets this season.

Florida's bullpen couldn't hold the 4-0 lead Johnson left -- six Florida relievers combined to allow 10 hits and six runs in four innings.

Meanwhile, four Mets relievers combined to allow five hits and no runs in four innings.

"It's just one of those nights where we did everything early and couldn't do anything late," Helms said. "That happens. We didn't need it to happen tonight, but it did. It's one game. We needed it, but it's over with."

Wright had an RBI double in the seventh, pulling the Mets to 4-1. Lo Duca and Carlos Beltran started the eighth with singles, and Delgado connected off Taylor Tankersley for his 39th home run to straightaway center field.

"That was a big situation in the game," Delgado said. "I was looking for a chance to tie it. ... It's nice to be able to come through."

Wright, the next batter, doubled off Chris Resop (1-1) -- and the Marlins followed with another pitching change. It, too, didn't work, as Floyd greeted Renyel Pinto with another double, scoring Wright.

"We kept our focus," Mets manager Willie Randolph said. "That's what you're supposed to do."

New York starter Oliver Perez struck out a season-high 11 in five innings, allowing five hits and four runs.

Rain delayed the start by 46 minutes, then interrupted play for another 82 minutes in the second inning -- after the Marlins built a 2-0 lead on Helms' two-run, two-out double in the first.

Both starting pitchers returned after the long delay.

Perez struck out eight batters in his first three innings of post-delay work, yet wasn't flawless during that span. He allowed a one-out single to Cabrera in the third, then Willingham followed his homer that staked Florida to a 4-0 lead.

Johnson, meanwhile, yielded leadoff singles in the fourth and fifth innings, but neither Met -- first Lo Duca, then Floyd -- advanced farther. But eventually, the Mets broke through.

"This is a big win tonight," Floyd said. "I think we'll all sleep a little better."

Notes

  • Mets RF Shawn Green was 0-for-5 with four strikeouts.
  • Florida 2B Dan Uggla singled in the first, giving him hits in six straight at-bats.
  • Franco is 0-for-8 with the bases loaded this season.
  • Many of the 15,163 fans who remained through the delays cheered when the scoreboard showed Cincinnati's win. Another reason to cheer: They get free tickets to an upcoming game because the rain delays exceeded 90 minutes.
 
Copyright 2014 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.
 
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Carlos Delgado takes his home-run trot after blasting a three-run shot in the eighth inning.  (AP)
Carlos Delgado takes his home-run trot after blasting a three-run shot in the eighth inning. (AP)

Players of the Game
New York

C. Delgado
AB 3
R 2
H 2
HR 1
RBI 3
Florida

J. Willingham
AB 4
R 2
H 3
HR 1
RBI 2
 

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New York Mets
Jose Reyes, SS5000014
Paul Lo Duca, C5230000
Carlos Beltran, CF5110012
Carlos Delgado, 1B3223201
David Wright, 3B5131002
Cliff Floyd, LF4031000
    Endy Chavez, LF0001100
Shawn Green, RF5000047
Jose Valentin, 2B3000102
Oliver Perez, P2010011
    Chad Bradford, P0000000
   a- Julio Franco, PH1000013
    Guillermo Mota, P0000000
   b- Lastings Milledge, PH1000011
    Aaron Heilman, P0000000
    Billy Wagner, P0000000
Totals3961364923 
a-struck out for Bradford in the 7th
b-struck out for Mota in the 8th
Batting
2B - David Wright 2 (, Nolasco, Resop), Cliff Floyd (, Pinto)
HR - Carlos Delgado (, Tankersley)
RBI - Carlos Delgado 3 (), David Wright (), Cliff Floyd (), Endy Chavez ()
2-OUT RBI - Endy Chavez ()
Team LOB - 10
New York Mets
Oliver Perez 55442111
Chad Bradford 1100010
Guillermo Mota (W,-) 1100120
Aaron Heilman (H,) 1100000
Billy Wagner (S,) 1200020
Pitches-Strikes - Oliver Perez 101-66, Chad Bradford 12-10, Guillermo Mota 20-11, Aaron Heilman 11-8, Billy Wagner 25-16
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Oliver Perez 2-2, Chad Bradford 1-1, Aaron Heilman 2-1
Batters Faced - Oliver Perez 22, Chad Bradford 4, Guillermo Mota 4, Aaron Heilman 4, Billy Wagner 5
Florida Marlins
Hanley Ramirez, SS5020020
Dan Uggla, 2B4110102
Miguel Cabrera, 3B5110034
Josh Willingham, LF4232010
    Eric Reed, PR-CF0000000
Wes Helms, 1B3012010
Cody Ross, RF2010201
    Joe Borowski, P0000000
    Matt Herges, P0000000
Miguel Olivo, C4000035
Alfredo Amezaga, CF-LF3000021
   a- Jason Wood, PH1000010
Josh Johnson, P2000020
    Ricky Nolasco, P0000000
    Taylor Tankersley, P1000010
    Chris Resop, P0000000
    Renyel Pinto, P0000000
    Chris Aguila, RF1010000
Totals35410431613 
a-struck out for Amezaga in the 9th
Batting
2B - Wes Helms (, Perez)
HR - Josh Willingham (, Perez)
SH - Wes Helms ()
RBI - Josh Willingham 2 (), Wes Helms 2 ()
2-OUT RBI - Wes Helms 2 ()
CS - Hanley Ramirez (, 2nd base by Mota/Lo Duca)
Team LOB - 8
Fielding
DP - H. Ramirez-Uggla-Helms
Florida Marlins
Josh Johnson 5300130
Ricky Nolasco 1211020
Taylor Tankersley (BS,) 1433121
Chris Resop (L,-)0111000
Renyel Pinto 1100020
Joe Borowski 0.2211200
Matt Herges 0.1000000
Pitches-Strikes - Josh Johnson 73-45, Ricky Nolasco 27-17, Taylor Tankersley 36-22, Chris Resop 2-1, Renyel Pinto 13-8, Joe Borowski 27-14, Matt Herges 4-2
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Josh Johnson 5-6, Ricky Nolasco 1-0, Taylor Tankersley 1-0
Batters Faced - Josh Johnson 18, Ricky Nolasco 5, Taylor Tankersley 8, Chris Resop 1, Renyel Pinto 4, Joe Borowski 6, Matt Herges 1
Game Information
Attendance - 15163
Game Time - 3:31
Temperature - 78
Umpires - Home - Brian O'Nora, First Base - Chuck Meriwether, Second Base - Phil Cuzzi, Third Base - Jerry Crawford