July 24, 2008: Delgado's Double Puts Mets in First Place

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Date: July 24, 2008
Mets starter: Oliver Perez
Mets: 3
Phillies: 1
Winning pitcher: Aaron Heilman
Key player(s): Carlos Delgado, Oliver Perez
Key play: Delgado’s double in 8th

The Mets and Phillies faced each other on a Thursday afternoon at Shea Stadium. The teams were tied for first place in the National League East Division entering the finale of a three-game series. A two-run double by Carlos Delgado in the eighth inning put the Mets ahead for a 3-1 win to take a one-game lead over Philadelphia.

Through the first six innings, Mets’ starter Oliver Perez had the Phils shut out on four hits. Perez gave up three scattered singles and a double to Eric Bruntlett while recording ten strikeouts with no walks. For Philadelphia, Jamie Moyer pitched two scoreless innings before surrendering a single to David Wright that scored Jose Reyes in the third. Moyer then retired the side in order in each of the next three innings.

Jayson Werth homered to tie the game for the Phillies in the top of the seventh. Perez retired Shane Victorino on a fly ball to center fielder Carlos Beltran and got Pedro Feliz for his eleventh strikeout of the game. Oliver finished off the inning by retiring Chris Coste on a grounder to shortstop Reyes. The Mets then failed to score against Moyer in the bottom half.

With one out in the top of the eighth inning, Bruntlett hit his second double of the game. Perez fanned Chase Utley for his twelfth strikeout and issued an intentional walk to Pat Burrell. Oliver hit Ryan Howard with a pitch to load the bases for Philadelphia. Mets’ reliever Aaron Heilman then retired Werth on a fly ball to Beltran for the third out.

Pinch-hitter Robinson Cancel singled off the Phils’ J. C. Romero to begin the bottom of the eighth. Cancel moved to second base on Reyes’ sacrifice bunt and Endy Chavez lined out back to Romero. Wright was walked intentionally and Delgado came to bat. Carlos hit a double to left field, scoring Cancel and Wright to give the Mets a two-run lead. Trying to advance on a throw to the plate, Delgado was tagged out by third baseman Feliz to end the inning.

In the top of the ninth, Billy Wagner retired Victorino and Feliz to start the inning. Coste hit a single to keep the Phillies’ hopes alive. Pinch-hitting for Romero, Jimmy Rollins hit a force play grounder to third baseman Wright for the final out of the game. The Mets had a victory to go into first place in the NL East.