July 9, 2013: Five Runs in 8th Beat Giants

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Date: July 9, 2013
Mets starter: Dillon Gee
Mets: 10
Giants: 6
Winning pitcher: Scott Rice
Key player(s): Andrew Brown, Anthony Recker, Marlon Byrd
Key play: Brown’s two-run single, Recker’s home run, Byrd’s grand slam

The Mets faced the Giants on a Tuesday night in San Francisco. The teams played the second of three games in a series. The Mets scored five runs in the eighth inning and came away with a 10-6 win.

Following a scoreless first, Giants’ starter Barry Zito pitched a perfect top of the second. Hunter Pence singled against the Mets’ Dillon Gee to lead off the bottom half. Brandon Belt hit a single to advance Pence to third base and Brandon Crawford went down on strikes. With Guillermo Quiroz at bat, Belt stole second base and moved to third as Pence came home on catcher Anthony Recker’s throwing error. Quiroz reached on a fielder’s choice ground ball to drive home Belt for a 2-0 San Francisco lead. Zito’s sacrifice bunt sent Quiroz to second. Gee then got Gregor Blanco to ground out to first baseman Josh Satin and end the inning.

Zito gave up only a double to Omar Quintanilla in the top of the third. Gee hurled a scoreless bottom half and David Wright drew a one-out walk in the top of the fourth. Marlon Byrd hit a single and Satin walked to load the bases. Andrew Brown singled to drive home Wright and Byrd with the tying runs. Recker was struck out and Quintanilla singled to score Satin for a 3-2 Mets lead. Zito fanned Gee for the third out of the inning. Dillon then shut down the Giants in the bottom half.

Zito held the Mets to a single by Wright in the top of the fifth. Consecutive singles by Blanco and Kensuke Tanaka began the bottom of the inning. Marco Scutaro’s sacrifice bunt advanced the runners to second and third base. Pablo Sandoval grounded out to second baseman Daniel Murphy to drive home Blanco and retie the game. Pence grounded back to Gee to close out the inning and Satin walked to begin the top of the sixth. Brown flied out to right fielder Pence and a two-run homer by Recker put the Mets ahead, 5-3. Quintanilla was retired on a pop-up to first baseman Belt. Zito then struck out Gee to end the inning.

Belt and Crawford drew back-to-back walks to open the bottom of the sixth. A sacrifice bunt by Quiroz moved the runners to second and third base. Pinch-hitter Tony Abreu got an infield single that scored Belt. Blanco grounded back to Gee for an inning-ending double play and the Mets failed to score after loading the bases against San Francisco reliever Jose Mijares in the top of the seventh. To begin the bottom of the inning, Tanaka walked and advanced to third on Scutaro’s single. Sandoval hit a sacrifice fly to bring home Tanaka and tie the game at 5-5. Gee struck out Pence and issued a walk to Belt. Mets’ reliever Scott Rice then got Crawford to ground out to Murphy and finish off the inning.

Quintanilla singled against Mijares with one out in the top of the eighth. Pinch-hitter Juan Lagares hit a single off Giants’ reliever Jeremy Affeldt and a wild pitch moved the runners to second and third base. Eric Young drew a walk to load the bases and Murphy followed with a sacrifice fly that plated Quintanilla with the go-ahead run. Wright walked to reload the bases and Jake Dunning came in to pitch for San Francisco. Byrd greeted Dunning with a grand slam to extend the Mets’ lead to 10-5. Satin drew a walk and Dunning got Brown on a force play ground ball to shortstop Crawford for the inning’s third out. Mets’ reliever Carlos Torres then pitched a scoreless bottom half.

Dunning set down the Mets on three straight infield grounders in the top of the ninth. With two outs in the bottom of the inning, Pence got a single and moved to second base on an error by Murphy. Pinch-hitter Nick Noonan singled to drive home Pence with the Giants’ sixth run. Torres then yielded a single to Crawford and retired Quiroz on a line drive to Murphy that ended the game. The Mets had their third consecutive victory.