June 28, 2014: Five-Run Start Downs Pirates

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Date: June 28, 2014
Mets starter: Jonathon Niese
Mets: 5
Pirates: 3
Winning pitcher: Jonathon Niese
Key player(s): Eric Campbell, Daniel Murphy, Eric Young
Key play: Campbell’s RBI double, Murphy’s two-run single

The Mets faced the Pirates on a Saturday afternoon in Pittsburgh. The teams played the third of four games in a weekend series. The Mets scored five runs in the first two innings and came away with a 5-3 win over the Bucs.

Ruben Tejada got a one-out single against Pirates’ starter Gerrit Cole in the top of the first. Daniel Murphy flied out to center fielder Andrew McCutchen and a single by Lucas Duda followed. Eric Campbell doubled to drive home Tejada and send Duda to third base. Lucas came home on a wild pitch and Kirk Nieuwenhuis singled to score Campbell for a three-run Mets lead. Cole retired Anthony Recker on a fly ball to McCutchen for the third out. Mets’ starter Jonathon Niese then pitched a scoreless bottom half.

Eric Young drew a walk with one out in the top of the second. Young stole second base and Curtis Granderson walked. On a third strike to Tejada, Young advanced to third and Granderson to second via a double steal. Murphy hit a single to plate both Young and Granderson, increasing the Mets’ lead to 5-0. Cole got Duda to ground out to second baseman Neil Walker and end the inning. Niese then shut down the Bucs in the bottom half.

After a scoreless third, Young singled to open the top of the fourth. Eric stole second base and Granderson flied out to right fielder Gregory Polanco. Tejada drew a walk and Cole retired the next two Mets batters to close out the inning. McCutchen got a leadoff double in the bottom half. Gaby Sanchez went down on strikes and Josh Harrison singled. Walker drew a walk to load the bases and Pedro Alvarez walked to force home McCutchen. Chris Stewart walked to plate Harrison and reduce the Mets’ lead to 5-2. Niese then threw a called third strike past pinch-hitter Sterling Marte and fanned Polanco to finish off the inning.

Campbell singled against Pittsburgh reliever Stolmy Pimentel to begin the top of the fifth. As Nieuwenhuis was struck out, Campbell stole second base. Recker popped out to Walker and a called third strike was thrown past Niese for the inning’s final out. Sanchez hit a double with two outs in the bottom half. Harrison got an infield single and Walker singled to bring home Sanchez with the Bucs’ third run of the game. Niese then got Alvarez on a ground ball to shortstop Tejada to end the inning.

Pimentel hurled a perfect top of the sixth. Niese retired the side on three straight infield grounders in the bottom half and Campbell got a two-out double in the top of the seventh. Nieuwenhuis was given an intentional walk and Pimentel struck out Recker to end the inning. Mets’ reliever Jeurys Familia pitched a perfect bottom half and Pimentel struck out the side in order in the top of the eighth. Familia then retired the Pirates 1-2-3 in the bottom half.

Pittsburgh reliever Ernesto Frieri set down all three batters in the top of the ninth. The Mets’ Jenrry Mejia retired Stewart on a fly ball to center fielder Juan Lagares to start the bottom of the inning. Pinch-hitter Travis Snider grounded out to third baseman Campbell. Mejia then got Polanco on a grounder to Campbell for the final out of the game. The Mets had a solid victory.

Notes

  • For the game, the teams were clad in uniforms commemorating the Negro Leagues. The Mets attire was of the Brooklyn Royal Giants, which existed from 1905 to 1942. The Pirates dressed as the Pittsburgh Crawfords, a team that played from 1931 to 1940.