April 6, 2006: Fifteen Hits Put Away Nats

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Date: April 6, 2006
Mets starter: Pedro Martinez
Mets: 10
Nationals: 5
Winning pitcher: Pedro Martinez
Key player(s): Carlos Beltran, Carlos Delgado, Jose Reyes
Key play: Delgado’s and Beltran’s home runs, Reyes’ two-run single

The Mets faced the Nationals on a Thursday night at Shea Stadium. The teams played the finale of a season-opening three-game series. The Mets collected fifteen hits in a 10-5 win over Washington.

Mets’ starter Pedro Martinez pitched a scoreless top of the first inning. Jose Reyes singled against the Nats’ Ramon Ortiz to lead off the bottom half. Reyes advanced to third base on Paul Lo Duca’s single and came home on Carlos Beltran’s force play ground ball to second baseman Jose Vidro. Carlos Delgado was retired on a pop-up to shortstop Royce Clayton. Beltran stole second and scored on a single by David Wright for a 2-0 Mets lead. Ortiz then got Cliff Floyd on a pop-up to Clayton for the third out.

Nick Johnson was hit by a pitch to open the top of the second. Alfonso Soriano singled and Ryan Zimmerman was called out on strikes. Clayton grounded out to third baseman Wright and an intentional walk to Brian Schneider loaded the bases. Ortiz got an infield single to drive home Johnson. On the play, Martinez made an error that allowed Soriano to come home and tie the game at 2-2. Pedro struck out Brandon Watson to end the inning. Ortiz then hurled a perfect bottom half.

Martinez shut down the Nationals in the top of the third. Ortiz gave up just a single to Lo Duca in the bottom of the inning and Pedro pitched a scoreless top of the fourth. Wright and Floyd got back-to-back singles to begin the bottom half. Xavier Nady singled to load the bases and Anderson Hernandez flied out to center fielder Watson. Martinez single to bring home Wright and put the Mets ahead by a run. Reyes followed with a single that plated both Floyd and Nady for a 5-2 New York lead. Ortiz then got Lo Duca to hit a grounder to Clayton for an inning-ending double play.

Vidro drew a walk to begin the top of the fifth. Jose Guillen was hit by a pitch and Johnson slugged a three-run homer to tie the game at 5-5. Soriano and Zimmerman both went down on strikes and Clayton grounded out to Wright to end the inning. With one out in the bottom half, Delgado homered to reclaim a one-run lead for the Mets. Wright was retired on a ground ball to third baseman Zimmerman. Ortiz then got Floyd to pop out to Zimmerman and finish off the inning.

Martinez surrendered just a walk to pinch-hitter Daryle Ward in the top of the sixth. Nady doubled against Washington reliever Jason Bergmann to lead off the bottom half. Hernandez was struck out and pinch-hitter Jose Valentin grounded out to first baseman Johnson. The Nationals’ Joey Eischen threw a called third strike past Reyes to close out the inning and the Mets’ Duaner Sanchez pitched a scoreless top of the seventh. Lo Duca drew a walk to begin the bottom of the inning. Beltran hit a two-run homer and Delgado went down on strikes. Wright walked and came around to score on Floyd’s double to increase the Mets’ lead to 9-5. Nady was walked intentionally and Hernandez lined out to left fielder Soriano. Eischen then fanned Sanchez for the inning’s final out.

Sanchez struck out the side in order in the top of the eighth. Reyes tripled against Nats’ reliever Felix Rodriguez to open the bottom half. Lo Duca was hit by a pitch and Rodriguez was replaced on the mound by Washington’s Jon Rauch. Beltran hit a sacrifice fly to drive home Reyes with the Mets’ tenth run of the game. Delgado was struck out and Wright singled for the fifteenth New York hit. Rauch then threw a called third strike past Floyd to end the inning.

Mets’ reliever Chad Bradford retired Guillen on a grounder to shortstop Reyes to start the top of the ninth. Johnson singled and Soriano was struck out. Bradford then fanned Zimmerman for the game’s final out. The Mets had a victory to conclude the first series of the season.