PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Ty Wigginton and Laynce Nix gave Philadelphia’s struggling offense a boost.
Wigginton drove in four runs and Nix had a tiebreaking double to support Cole Hammels and help the Phillies avoid a three-game sweep with an 8-2 win over the New York Mets on Sunday.
“It shows our guys we can score runs and we can knock them in,” Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said.
Scoring runs has been a big problem for the five-time reigning NL East champions who are playing without injured All-Stars Chase Utley (knee) and Ryan Howard (Achilles). Philadelphia entered Sunday having lost five of its first eight while scoring 20 runs, including two runs combined in a pair of losses to the Mets in this series.
But Wigginton and Nix, two reserves Philadelphia added this season to bolster its bench, helped the Phillies set a season high for runs while matching their 2012 best with 14 hits.
“They’re new on our team and it definitely takes them a while to get the feeling they belong,” Manuel said. “I know how much they want to impress you. It takes them awhile to get used to our team and feeling good about themselves.”
Said Wigginton: “Anytime you take the field and contribute, it definitely feels good.”
The Phillies tied it at 2 in the seventh on Wigginton’s sacrifice fly to right that scored Jimmy Rollins. Rollins could’ve made the second out of the inning, but right fielder Lucas Duda misjudged his lazy flyball to short right field. The ball dropped in for a single.
“Lucas broke back on the ball,” Mets manager Terry Collins said. “He probably had a shot.”
Rollins moved to second on Hunter Pence’s single to left, then both advanced on a wild pitch by reliever Ramon Ramirez (1-1). Pence, incidentally, likely would have been the third out: His grounder into left field got through the hole between short and third because shortstop Ruben Tejada was cheating up the middle for a potential steal by Rollins.
Nix, who had been hitless in seven at-bats this season, doubled home Pence to put the Phillies up 3-2. Nix’s hit nearly was caught by left fielder Scott Hairston, who charged into the corner and jumped for the liner but had it glance off his glove and ricochet into foul territory.
“I think it was a good time to get my first hit,” Nix said. “I was happy to get my feet wet and get something done.”
The Phillies, helped by Tejada’s throwing error, tacked on five unearned runs run in the eighth, an inning highlighted by Wigginton’s bases-clearing double.
“That has been our problem,” Manuel said. “We do get a couple of hits and we can’t get a big one.”
Hamels (1-1) fell into an early hole, giving up Ike Davis’ first homer of the year, a two-out, two-run drive in the first.
“You put it behind you and start back over,” said Hamels, who struck out 10 and allowed two runs on six hits. “You need to get the next guy out and keep plugging away.”
The Phillies avoided a three-game sweep at home against the Mets for the first time since June 13-15, 2006.
The Phillies blew the game open with five unearned runs in the eighth off Manny Acosta and Miguel Batista.
David Wright was 2 for 4, dropping his average to .572 (12 for 21). Davis and Duda each had two hits for the Mets, who got six solid innings from starter Mike Pelfrey. The right-hander allowed one run on eight hits while striking out two and walking two.
“He was outstanding,” Collins said of Pelfrey, who was lifted after 99 pitches. “It was another good start for him. He had a good curveball and got a lot of groundballs.”
The Phillies got a run back in the bottom half when Rollins singled home Juan Pierre, who went 3 for 4 with three singles.
NOTES: Mets OF Jason Bay, after originally being in the starting lineup, was a late scratch. He injured his right ring finger sliding into a base Saturday night. . Each member of the Phillies and Mets honored the 65th anniversary of Jackie Robinson breaking the color barrier in baseball by wearing No. 42 during the game. During a pregame ceremony, members of the Tuskegee Airmen and two players from the Philadelphia Stars, Harold Gould and Mahlon Duckett, of the Negro League were recognized. . The crowd of 45,829 was the sixth-largest in Citizens Bank Park history and the 210th regular-season sellout. . It was the 19th career double-digit strikeout game for Hamels.
(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.)