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New York (36-43)000100010290
Pittsburgh (40-39) «00113000x580

Rookie Polanco drives in four, helps lead Pirates past Mets

CBSSports.com wire reports
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PITTSBURGH -- Gregory Polanco has already earned a long list of admirers during his short time in the majors. New York Mets manager Terry Collins is now one of them.

Collins got his first look at the Pittsburgh Pirates' rookie right fielder Thursday night and came away impressed.

"He's got a lot of tools, a lot of skills," Collins said. "I watched him in batting practice and you see he had big power, then he showed it in the game. He's very impressive."

The hot-hitting Polanco had a home run and four RBI, and resurgent right-hander Vance Worley pitched seven stingy innings to lead the Pirates past the Mets 5-2 for their fifth victory in six games.

Polanco drove in the game's first run with a groundout in the first inning, then sent a three-run homer into the right-field stands off Daisuke Matsuzaka in the fifth to put the Pirates ahead 5-1. The right fielder went 2 for 3 with a walk and is hitting .338 in 16 games since being called up from Triple-A Indianapolis on June 10.

The Pirates are 10-6 since Polanco arrived, pushing them one game above .500 at 40-39.

"He's a talented young man, so I'm humble to have him on the club and the opportunity to write his name in the lineup," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. "It's a good time for him to be included on our club and he's obviously been making a difference since he's been up here."

Worley (2-0) scattered seven hits, walked two and struck out three. He has given up four runs in 20⅔ innings over three starts since coming up from Indianapolis on June 15. He was 1-5 with a 7.21 ERA in 10 starts for Minnesota last season.

Hurdle was particularly impressed that Worley pitched so effectively while struggling with his command. Worley had walked only five batters in 58⅔ innings between Pittsburgh and Indianapolis before Thursday.

"It was a very solid body of work, a very professional effort," Hurdle said. "He'll be the first one to tell you he wasn't as sharp as he'd been previously. You saw a man go out there and have to wrestle a little bit and maintain composure, mound presence, and just pound the zone."

Matsuzaka (3-2) allowed five runs and five hits in six innings with four walks and four strikeouts. Lucas Duda hit his team-high 12th home run for the Mets.

New York cut it to 5-2 on back-to-back doubles by Daniel Murphy and David Wright in the eighth, but Mark Melancon pitched a perfect ninth for his 14th save.

Polanco's home run came on a full-count pitch with one out after Pedro Alvarez hit the first of his three singles and Worley also singled.

Polanco sounded a little like famous Notre Dame football coach Knute Rockne when he talked about his approach at the plate in that situation.

"I just fight, fight, fight, swing, swing and try to make contact," Polanco said. "I stayed with my approach and I hit it."

Polanco hit a slider after Mets catcher Travis d'Arnaud had called for a changeup.

"I shook off d'Arnaud and that ended up being a big mistake," Matsuzaka said through a translator. "I apologize to him about that."

Notes

New York activated CF Juan Lagares (ribcage) from the 15-day disabled list before the game. ... Mets RHP Dillon Gee will make his second rehab start Sunday, pitching for Class A Brooklyn while on a 55-pitch limit. He has been on the DL since June 11 with a strained right lat. ... Pittsburgh LF Starling Marte was not in the starting lineup for the second straight game. He felt concussion-like symptoms after sliding into second base Tuesday night at Tampa Bay. The head and neck are no longer a problem, but Marte is still feeling the effects of a jammed right middle finger. ... Pirates LHP Francisco Liriano had a 30-pitch bullpen session, the first time he had thrown off a mound since going on the disabled list June 11 with a left oblique strain. ... New York RHP Jacob deGrom (1-4, 3.75 ERA) faces RHP Brandon Cumpton (3-2, 4.93) in a matchup of rookies Friday night.

 
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Jordy Mercer (left) and starting pitcher Vance Worley greet Gregory Polanco after his decisive three-run blast.  (Getty Images)
Jordy Mercer (left) and starting pitcher Vance Worley greet Gregory Polanco after his decisive three-run blast. (Getty Images)

Players of the Game
Pittsburgh

G. Polanco
AB 3
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 4
New York

L. Duda
AB 4
R 1
H 1
HR 1
RBI 1
 
New York (N.L.) Mets
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Curtis Granderson, RF3000112 .239
Daniel Murphy, 2B4110002 .296
David Wright, 3B4011002 .277
Lucas Duda, 1B4111011 .252
Bobby Abreu, LF2010100 .286
   a-Chris Young, PH-LF-CF1000001 .209
Juan Lagares, CF4010022 .294
   Vic Black, P0000000 .000
Travis d'Arnaud, C4010013 .186
Ruben Tejada, SS3010003 .236
Daisuke Matsuzaka, P2010002 .286
   b-Kirk Nieuwenhuis, PH1010000 .308
   Carlos Torres, P0000000 .000
   Josh Edgin, P0000000 .000
   Eric Campbell, LF1000000 .288
Totals3329225  
a-grounded out for Abreu in the 8th
b-singled for Matsuzaka in the 7th
Batting
2B - Daniel Murphy (18, Watson), David Wright (20, Watson)
HR - Lucas Duda (12, Worley)
RBI - David Wright (41), Lucas Duda (39)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
DP - Murphy-Duda, Murphy-Duda-Murphy-Tejada-Duda
PB - Travis d'Arnaud (4)
New York (N.L.) Mets
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Daisuke Matsuzaka (L,3-2) 6555441 3.23
Carlos Torres 1200100 3.21
Josh Edgin 0.2100000 1.59
Vic Black 0.1000000 1.23
IBB - A. McCutchen by Carlos Torres
WP - Daisuke Matsuzaka (4)
HBP - Martin (by Daisuke Matsuzaka)
Pitches-Strikes - Daisuke Matsuzaka 96-55, Carlos Torres 13-7, Josh Edgin 10-6, Vic Black 5-4
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Daisuke Matsuzaka 6-6, Carlos Torres 2-0, Josh Edgin 1-1
Batters Faced - Daisuke Matsuzaka 26, Carlos Torres 5, Josh Edgin 3, Vic Black 1
Pittsburgh Pirates
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Gregory Polanco, RF3124100 .338
Josh Harrison, LF3000001 .297
Andrew McCutchen, CF3110110 .315
Neil Walker, 2B4000023 .273
Russell Martin, C3000001 .260
Ike Davis, 1B2000201 .246
Pedro Alvarez, 3B4030010 .237
   Mark Melancon, P0000000 .000
Jordy Mercer, SS3200104 .229
Vance Worley, P1110000 .143
   a-Travis Snider, PH1010000 .239
   Tony Watson, P00000001.000
   Clint Barmes, 3B0000000 .241
Totals2758454  
a-singled for Worley in the 7th
Batting
2B - Andrew McCutchen (23, Matsuzaka)
HR - Gregory Polanco (2, Matsuzaka)
SH - Josh Harrison (1), Vance Worley (2)
RBI - Gregory Polanco 4 (10)
SB - Gregory Polanco (4, 2nd base off Matsuzaka/d'Arnaud)
CS - Ike Davis (3, 2nd base by Matsuzaka/d'Arnaud)
Team LOB - 6
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Josh Harrison 1
DP - Walker-Mercer-Davis, Walker-Mercer-Davis-Alvarez-Walker-Davis
Pittsburgh Pirates
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Vance Worley (W,2-0) 7711231 1.74
Tony Watson 1211020 0.98
Mark Melancon (S,14) 1000000 2.41
HBP - Tejada (by Vance Worley)
Pitches-Strikes - Vance Worley 100-70, Tony Watson 22-15, Mark Melancon 7-5
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Vance Worley 9-6, Tony Watson 1-0, Mark Melancon 2-1
Batters Faced - Vance Worley 28, Tony Watson 5, Mark Melancon 3
Game Information
Attendance - 36647
Game Time - 2:53
Temperature - 81
Umpires - Home - Jeff Nelson, First Base - Laz Diaz, Second Base - Toby Basner, Third Base - Scott Barry