By John Schweibacher
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The Mets outlasted the Rockies on Sunday in their 11-inning, 6-5 win at Colorado after Tim Byrdak allowed a game-tying, pinch-hit grand slam to Todd Helton in the 8th inning and Frank Francisco gave up a game-tying solo shot by Carlos Gonzalez in the 10th.
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, it was the second victory in franchise history in which the Mets allowed a pair of game-tying home runs in the eighth inning or later.
The other was the Mets’ unforgettable 19-inning, 16-13 win at Atlanta back on July 4, 1985, in which the Braves had two-out, game-tying home runs from both Terry Harper (a two-run shot in the 13th inning) and Rick Camp (a solo homer in the 18th).
It was the only home run in 175 career at-bats for Camp, a pitcher who batted in that potential game-ending situation with no pinch-hitters available for the Braves.
The Mets were done-in by an 11-run fifth inning by the Rockies Friday night in an 18-9 loss at Coors Field. It was the ninth time in club history that the Mets have allowed 18 or more runs in a game:
· 26, 6/11/85 27-7 loss at Philadelphia
· 19, 7/3/73 19-8 loss at Montreal
· 19, 9/26/92 19-2 loss at Pittsburgh
· 19, 7/26/04 19-10 loss at Montreal
· 18, 6/11/67 18-10 loss at Chicago (game two)
· 18, 9/16/72 18-5 loss at Chicago
· 18, 4/7/04 18-10 loss at Atlanta
· 18, 5/31/10 18-6 loss at San Diego
· 18, 4/27/12 18-9 loss at Colorado
The 11 runs allowed by the Mets matched the club record for most allowed in a single inning, which had occurred four previous times:
· 4/7/04 at Atlanta 4th inning
· 4/1/97 at San Diego 6th inning
· 7/30/69 vs. Houston 9th inning (game one)
· 7/18/64 at St. Louis 8th inning
The Mets also committed four errors in that fifth inning, tying the franchise mark for the most in a single inning. It was the fourth time the Mets made four errors in a single inning:
· 4/27/12 at Colorado: Schwinden, Nickeas, Tejada and Lutz.
· 4/4/96 vs. St. Louis: Alfonzo (2), Everett and Kent.
· 5/1/91 vs. San Diego: Viola, Cerone, Johnson and Miller.
· 6/9/87: at Chicago: Hernandez (2), Teufel, and Lyons.
Scott Hairston hit a single in the second inning, a home run in the fourth inning, a triple in the fifth inning and completed the cycle with a double in the sixth inning in the Friday night loss to the Rockies. Hairston is the 10th player in Mets history to hit for the cycle, but according to the Elias Sports Bureau, only the second to do it in the first six innings of the game.
Jim Hickman also accomplished this feat in 1963: single in the first inning, double in the second inning, triple in the fourth inning and a home run in the sixth inning.
Hairston’s cycle was the first by a Mets player since Jose Reyes completed the feat against the Reds back on June 21st, 2006. Like Reyes’ cycle, Hairston’s came in a loss, only the second of the 10 cycles in Mets’ history not to come in a win.
Dillon Gee was the winning pitcher on his 26th birthday as the Mets won in Denver, 7-5, over the Rockies Saturday night. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Gee became the fifth Mets pitcher to start and win a game on his birthday; Ron Darling did it twice (1985 and 1986), and the others were Ray Burris (1980), Wally Whitehurst (1991), and Dave Mlicki (1995).
The Mets visit the Houston Astros this week as they conclude their six-game road trip.
Both the Mets and Astros are celebrating their 50th anniversary seasons but this will be the last time the two clubs meet in Houston as National League opponents since the Astros are set to move to the American League next season.
The Astros were known as the Colt .45′s for the first three seasons of their existence and played their home games at Colt Stadium before moving to the Astrodome and changing their nickname.
The Mets did not fare well on the road against the Colt .45′s during those three seasons, going just 5 and 21 with one tie in 27 games played. Safeco Field in Seattle (0 and 3 in 2005), Tiger Stadium in Detroit (0 and 3 in 1997) and the Minneapolis Metrodome (0 and 3 in 2004) are the only current and former ballparks where the Mets posted worse records in club history.
Al Jackson was the winning pitcher in three of those five Mets wins. New York hit just three home runs at Colt Stadium, one in each the three seasons there; Marv Throneberry (1962), Ron Hunt (1963) and Larry Elliott (1964).
The Mets were not much better at the Astrodome, posting an overall regular season record of 83 and 132 there against the Astros from 1965 through 1999 but did win two of the three games played in Houston during the 1986 NLCS.
Howard Johnson hit 10 home runs for the Mets at the Astrodome, the most by any player in club history. Tom Seaver won seven games there for the Mets to lead all pitchers, while Jesse Orosco, the hero of the series clinching win in Game 6 of the 1986 NLCS, posted an ERA of 0.00 in his 13 career regular season outings for the Mets at the Astrodome.
The Mets are an even 20 and 20 in their 40 games against the Astros at Astros Field, Houston’s home ballpark since 2000. David Wright shares the Mets’ all-time home run lead of four hit there with Jay Payton. Steve Trachsel and John Maine are the only Mets pitchers to win twice at Astros Field, while Jon Niese has the best ERA; 1.29.
The Mets return to Citi Field this weekend to face the Arizona Diamondbacks. The Mets swept Arizona in their lone visit to Flushing last season but the D’backs returned the favor with a three-game sweep when the two clubs played in Arizona. The Mets had been just 2 and 5 in games against the Diamondbacks at Citi Field prior to last season.
Schwei’s Runs, Hits and Errors:
Runs: Johan Santana. Mets ace has now allowed one run or no runs in four of his five starts.
Hits: Ruben Tejada. Mets SS goes 10-for-17 in three games in Colorado, raising his batting average from .239 to .310.
Errors: Dirty Half-Dozen. The Mets committed six errors, equaling the second-most in team history in 18-9 loss to Rockies, one fewer than the team record seven (8/1/96 vs. Pitt).
Errors: Dirty Dozen-and-a-Half. Mets bullpen allows 18 runs in three games at Coors Field.
How will the Mets fare this week? Make your prediction below…