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N.Y. Mets (14-12)01000100000290
Cincinnati (13-13) «100010000013102

Nix's pinch-hit homer in 11th sends Reds past Mets

CBSSports.com wire reports
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CINCINNATI -- Laynce Nix had never made such a joyous, impromptu trip around the bases.

His pinch-hit homer in the bottom of the 11th inning powered the Cincinnati Reds to a 3-2 victory over the New York Mets on Monday night and provided a first-ever home-plate pummeling for Nix, who had never homered to end a game.

"That's the best!" Nix said after getting engulfed in a joyous scrum at home plate.

That's how the Reds have done it all season.

Nix's one-out homer on a hanging curve from Manny Acosta (1-1) left the Reds 3-0 in extra innings. Eight of their 11 wins have come in their final at-bat.

This one surprised even Nix, whose drive barely cleared the wall in right-center field.

"I didn't think it was going out," said Nix, who watched it the whole way. "I thought it was too high, but it carried far enough."

Nick Masset (3-1) pitched the last two innings, giving up two singles in the 11th before pitching out of another Mets threat. Then, he watched Nix end it with a drive that barely made it.

"I knew it was out," Masset said. "If you get it up in the air here, it can go out."

New York stranded runners in scoring position in the sixth, seventh and 11th innings, forcing the Mets to settle for two runs in one of the majors' most hitter-friendly ballparks.

"We at some point have got to push a run across late in this ballpark," Mets manager Jerry Manuel said.

Drew Stubbs also homered for the Reds, leading off the first inning with the first one allowed by Oliver Perez this season. Joey Votto also had an RBI single off the left-hander, who lasted six innings and remained winless in six starts since Aug. 18.

Both teams have taken similar bottom-to-top paths in the last two weeks.

The Mets won eight in a row, going from last to first in the NL East. Two losses at Philadelphia over the weekend dropped them a half-game behind the Phillies heading into the Cincinnati series. The Reds won five straight, climbing to second place in the NL Central, before dropping their last two at first-place St. Louis.

Which one would keep falling?

The Mets were playing on little rest. They lost in Philadelphia 11-5 on Sunday night, and didn't get to their hotel in Cincinnati until nearly 4 a.m.

The offense looked a little sleepy, but that wasn't new. Four of the Mets' eight starting position players were batting .257 or less heading into the game.

"We've just got to find a way to get runners on," said Jeff Francoeur, who singled home the first run. "And not just get runners on, but get them on to start an inning. We've got to get so many two-out hits."

The Reds gave them a little help to get going.

Stubbs initially broke the wrong way on Ike Davis' liner to center with two outs in the second inning. Stubbs never fully recovered, the ball deflecting off his glove for a two-base error. Francoeur singled off Mike Leake to tie it 1-1, only his fourth hit in his last 18 at-bats.

Jose Reyes doubled home another run in the sixth, tying it at 2. But the Mets' offense stopped there.

Leake, who made the jump from Arizona State directly to the majors, had another solid showing. The unbeaten right-hander gave up four hits and two runs -- one earned -- in six innings, lowering his ERA to 2.94.

Notes
  • Mets RH Mike Pelfrey had a precautionary MRI on his right shoulder, which felt a little stiff during his start on Saturday. He's expected to make his next start.
  • RHP Kelvim Escobar will have surgery on his right shoulder Wednesday and miss the rest of the season. Escobar came to the Mets' camp on a minor league contract but developed shoulder problems in March.
  • 3B David Wright made the best play of the game, catching Stubbs' grounder down the line and making a throw from foul territory while his momentum carried him away from first. Got him by a step.
  • New York's Jason Bay saw his hitting streak end at nine games.
  • Reds OF Chris Dickerson had surgery on his right hand and wrist. He's expected to be sidelined for at least a month.
  • RF Chris Heisey made his major league debut, going 0 for 5. He was the Reds' minor league player of the year last season.
 
Copyright 2015 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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Laynce Nix is warmly welcomed by his teammates after hitting the pinch-hit walk-off homer. (AP)
Laynce Nix is warmly welcomed by his teammates after hitting the pinch-hit walk-off homer. (AP)

Players of the Game
Cincinnati

D. Stubbs
AB 5
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 1
New York

J. Reyes
AB 5
R 0
H 2
HR 0
RBI 1
 

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New York Mets
Angel Pagan, CF5010000 .241
Luis Castillo, 2B4120101 .270
Jose Reyes, SS5021003 .226
Jason Bay, LF5000022 .255
David Wright, 3B5020021 .281
Ike Davis, 1B5110023 .293
Jeff Francoeur, RF4011002 .264
Rod Barajas, C4000012 .230
Oliver Perez, P2000010 .125
   a- Frank Catalanotto, PH0000000 .143
   b- Fernando Tatis, PH1000011 .206
    Jenrry Mejia, P0000000 .000
    Fernando Nieve, P0000000 .000
   c- Gary Matthews Jr., PH1000000 .135
    Pedro Feliciano, P0000000 .000
    Manny Acosta, P0000000 .000
Totals4129219  
a-announced for Perez in the 7th
b-struck out for Catalanotto in the 7th
c-grounded out for Nieve in the 10th
Batting
2B - Angel Pagan (2, Leake), Jose Reyes (4, Leake), Ike Davis (4, Herrera)
RBI - Jose Reyes (7), Jeff Francoeur (14)
2-OUT RBI - Jeff Francoeur (6)
SB - Luis Castillo (4, 3rd base off Leake/Hernandez)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
DP - Reyes-Castillo-Davis
New York Mets
Oliver Perez 6622441 4.05
Jenrry Mejia 1200000 1.50
Fernando Nieve 2000020 2.81
Pedro Feliciano 1100100 0.71
Manny Acosta (L,1-1) 0.1111001 6.75
WP - Oliver Perez (2)
Pitches-Strikes - Oliver Perez 108-68, Jenrry Mejia 18-14, Fernando Nieve 25-17, Pedro Feliciano 22-13, Manny Acosta 11-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Oliver Perez 4-9, Jenrry Mejia 1-2, Fernando Nieve 3-1, Pedro Feliciano 1-2, Manny Acosta 1-0
Batters Faced - Oliver Perez 27, Jenrry Mejia 5, Fernando Nieve 6, Pedro Feliciano 5, Manny Acosta 2
Cincinnati Reds
Drew Stubbs, CF5121000 .193
Brandon Phillips, 2B5010012 .238
Joey Votto, 1B4021110 .297
Scott Rolen, 3B5010014 .259
Jonny Gomes, LF5000003 .197
Orlando Cabrera, SS3020210 .250
Chris Heisey, RF5000015 .000
Ramon Hernandez, C4010110 .245
Mike Leake, P1100102 .364
   a- Miguel Cairo, PH1000002 .105
    Danny Herrera, P0000000 .000
    Mike Lincoln, P0000000 .000
    Arthur Rhodes, P0000000 .000
    Francisco Cordero, P0000000 .000
   b- Jay Bruce, PH1000000 .250
    Nick Masset, P0000000 .000
   c- Laynce Nix, PH1111000 .207
Totals40310356  
a-flied out for Leake in the 6th
b-grounded out for Cordero in the 9th
c-homered for Masset in the 11th
Batting
HR - Drew Stubbs (2, Perez), Laynce Nix (1, Acosta)
RBI - Drew Stubbs (8), Joey Votto (14), Laynce Nix (2)
2-OUT RBI - Joey Votto (7)
Team LOB - 11
Fielding
DP - Votto, Cabrera-Votto
E - Orlando Cabrera (2, Missed catch of throw), Drew Stubbs (1, Dropped line drive)
Cincinnati Reds
Mike Leake 6421140 2.94
Danny Herrera0100000 2.16
Mike Lincoln 0.2000000 3.00
Arthur Rhodes 1.1100010 0.84
Francisco Cordero 1100010 2.51
Nick Masset (W,3-1) 2200030 9.69
Pitches-Strikes - Mike Leake 100-66, Danny Herrera 6-3, Mike Lincoln 9-5, Arthur Rhodes 12-9, Francisco Cordero 9-6, Nick Masset 31-20
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Mike Leake 4-10, Arthur Rhodes 1-1, Francisco Cordero 1-1, Nick Masset 2-1
Batters Faced - Mike Leake 23, Danny Herrera 1, Mike Lincoln 2, Arthur Rhodes 4, Francisco Cordero 4, Nick Masset 8
Game Information
Attendance - 14350
Game Time - 3:31
Temperature - 75
Umpires - Home - Mike DiMuro, First Base - Tim Welke, Second Base - Sam Holbrook, Third Base - Bill Welke