July 12, 2007: Reyes and Gotay Slug Reds

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Date: July 12, 2007
Mets starter: Orlando Hernandez
Mets: 3
Reds: 2
Winning pitcher: Orlando Hernandez
Key player(s): Jose Reyes, Ruben Gotay, Orlando Hernandez
Key play: Reyes’ and Gotay’s home runs in 1st, Gotay’s single in 5th

The Mets faced the Reds on a Thursday night at Shea Stadium. The teams played the opener of a four-game weekend series. Jose Reyes and Ruben Gotay drove in all the Mets’ run in a 3-2 win over Cincinnati.

Mets’ starter Orlando Hernandez pitched a scoreless top of the first inning. Reyes homered against the Reds’ Bronson Arroyo to lead off the bottom half. Gotay followed with a homer for the Mets’ second run and Carlos Beltran went down on strikes. David Wright popped out to second baseman Brandon Phillips and a single by Carlos Delgado ensued. Arroyo then retired Paul Lo Duca on a line drive to third baseman Edwin Encarnacion for the inning’s final out.

Adam Dunn drew a walk to begin the top of the second. Encarnacion was struck out and Alex Gonzalez singled to left field. David Ross went down on strikes and Arroyo walked to load the bases. Scott Hatteberg hit a single to drive home Dunn and Gonzalez, tying the game at 2-2. Hernandez retired Ryan Freel on an inning-ending pop-up to third baseman Wright and singled with two outs in the bottom half. Orlando stole second base and moved to third on a wild pitch as Reyes drew a walk. With Gotay at bat, Reyes was caught by Arroyo’s pickoff throw to first baseman Hatteberg for the third out of the inning.

After scoreless third and fourth innings, Hernandez set down the side in order in the top of the fifth. Lastings Milledge singled to open the bottom half. Hernandez was struck out and Reyes lined out to left fielder Dunn. Gotay followed with a single on which Milledge came all the way home to put the Mets ahead by a run. Beltran popped out to shortstop Gonzalez to finish off the inning and Hernandez pitched a perfect top of the sixth. Arroyo then shut down the Mets in the bottom half.

Mets’ reliever Joe Smith retired all three Cincinnati batters in the top of the seventh inning. Arroyo yielded only a double to Reyes in the bottom half and New York’s Pedro Feliciano hurled a perfect top of the eighth. Beltran and Wright drew consecutive walks against Reds’ reliever Mike Stanton to open the bottom of the inning. Following a double steal, Delgado was retired on a fly ball to Dunn. Cincinnati’s Jared Burton got Lo Duca to ground out to Encarnacion and issued an intentional walk to Shawn Green to load the bases. Burton then got Milledge on a force play ground ball to Encarnacion to close out the inning.

Phillips singled against Mets’ reliever Billy Wagner to lead off the top of the ninth. Dunn grounded out to second baseman Gotay to move Phillips to second base. On Encarnacion’s ensuing grounder to shortstop Reyes, Phillips got caught in a rundown and was tagged out by Gotay. With pinch-hitter Jeff Conine at the plate, Encarnacion stole second. Wagner then retired Conine on a ground ball to Wright that ended the game. The Mets had a victory to begin the series.