May 13, 2006: Lo Duca's Homer in 9th Beats Brewers

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Date: May 13, 2006
Mets starter: Geremi Gonzalez
Mets: 9
Brewers: 8
Winning pitcher: Chad Bradford
Key player(s): Paul Lo Duca, Jose Valentin, Carlos Beltran
Key play: Beltran’s home run, Valentin’s single and homer, Lo Duca’s home run

The Mets faced the Brewers on a Saturday night in Milwaukee. The teams collected a total of twelve hits apiece in the game. A home run by Paul Lo Duca in the ninth inning gave the Mets a 9-8 win.

Geremi Gonzalez and the Brewers’ Dana Eveland each pitched two scoreless innings to start the game. In the top of the third, Gonzalez drew a leadoff walk and Jose Reyes followed with an infield single. Lo Duca popped out to shortstop Bill Hall and a home run by Carlos Beltran gave the Mets a three-run lead. Eveland retired Carlos Delgado on a fly ball to left fielder Carlos Lee and got David Wright to ground out to Hall and end the inning. With two outs in the bottom half, Rickie Weeks homered for the first Milwaukee run. Gonzalez then retired Hall on an inning-ending line drive to center fielder Beltran.

Eveland hurled a scoreless top of the fourth inning. Gonzalez struck out Geoff Jenkins and Lee to begin the bottom half. Prince Fielder hit a home run to reduce the Mets’ lead to 3-2. An ensuing line drive by Corey Koskie was caught by third baseman Wright for the third out. Eveland set down the Mets in order in the top of the fifth. Gonzalez then shut down Milwaukee in the bottom of the inning.

Delgado and Wright opened the top of the sixth with back-to-back singles. Eveland’s wild pitch advanced the runners to second and third base and Xavier Nady flied out to right fielder Jenkins. Chris Woodward was walked intentionally to load the bases. Jose Valentin singled to left field to drive home Delgado and Wright. Gonzalez went down on strikes and Reyes singled off Brewers’ reliever Justin Lehr to score Reyes for a 6-2 Mets lead. Reyes stole second base before Lehr retired Lo Duca on a grounder to Hall for the third out of the inning.

Hall hit a double to lead off the bottom of the sixth. Jenkins singled off Mets’ reliever Aaron Heilman to bring home Hall. Lee doubled to score Jenkins for the fourth Milwaukee run and Heilman followed up with three consecutive strikeouts. Brewers’ reliever Jorge de la Rosa retired the Mets 1-2-3 in the top of the seventh inning. Heilman then pitched a scoreless bottom half.

Nady doubled off Milwaukee’s Chris Demaria to begin the top of the eighth inning. Woodward’s sacrifice bunt moved Nady to third base and a two-run homer by Valentin extended the Mets’ lead to 8-4. Demaria struck out pinch-hitter Julio Franco and Reyes for the final outs of the inning. With one out in the bottom half, Mets’ reliever Duaner Sanchez walked Lee and yielded a single to Fielder. Koskie hit a three-run homer and Damian Miller followed with a home run to tie the game. Sanchez hit Brady Clark with a pitch and was (along with manager Willie Randolph) ejected from the game. Chad Bradford then came in to pitch for the Mets and finished the inning with no further damage.

Leading off the top of the ninth, Lo Duca homered off Brewers’ reliever Derrick Turnbow to put the Mets back in front. Beltran singled to right field and Delgado hit a grounder to Hall for a double play. Turnbow followed up with a walk to Wright. With Nady at bat, David was caught stealing on a throw by catcher Miller to second baseman Weeks to end the inning.

Mets’ reliever Billy Wagner struck out Jenkins to start the bottom of the ninth. Lee got an infield single and stole second base. Fielder went down on strikes for the second out of the inning. Wagner then threw a called third strike past Koskie to end the game. The Mets had rebounded from a Milwaukee comeback and emerged with a victory.