May 15, 2011: Turner Drives in 5 Runs

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Date: May 15, 2011
Mets starter: Chris Capuano
Mets: 7
Astros: 4
Winning pitcher: Chris Capuano
Key player(s): Justin Turner, Jason Pridie
Key play: Turner’s double in 5th, Pridie’s single in 5th, Turner’s homer in 6th

The Mets faced the Astros on a Sunday afternoon in Houston. The teams concluded a three-game series at Minute Maid Park. Justin Turner drove in five runs to lead the Mets to a 7-4 win.

After a scoreless first inning, Astros’ starter Aneury Rodriguez retired the Mets in order in the top of the second. Bill Hall doubled off the Mets’ Chris Capuano to begin the bottom half. Jason Michaels grounded out to second baseman Turner to advance Hall to third. A single by Chris Johnson scored Hall with the first run of the game. Clint Barmes drew a walk and Rodriguez struck out. Capuano then got Michael Bourn on a force play grounder to end the inning.

Rodriguez pitched a perfect top of the third. Capuano struck out all three Houston batters in the bottom half. The Mets were set down in order again in the top of the fourth and Hall singled to open the bottom of the inning. Michaels hit a double to bring home Hall and extend the Astros’ lead to 2-0. After recording an out, Capuano walked Barmes for the second time in the game. Rodriguez fouled a two-strike bunt for the second out. Bourn then hit an inning-ending fly ball to left fielder Jason Bay.

Leading off the top of the fifth inning, Bay reached on an error by first baseman Carlos Lee. Daniel Murphy followed with a single to right field. Turner hit a double to score Bay and Murphy with the tying runs. An ensuing single by Jason Pridie brought home Turner to put the Mets ahead. Pridie advanced to second on Capuano’s sacrifice bunt and Jose Reyes drew a walk. Josh Thole flied out to move Pridie to third. With David Wright at bat, Pridie scored on a steal after Reyes had stolen second. Jose stole third and Wright drew a walk. Rodriguez struck out Carlos Beltran to end the inning. Capuano then shut down the Astros in the bottom half.

Bay singled to start the top of the sixth. An error by Rodriguez on a pickoff attempt moved Bay to second base. Murphy drew a walk and Turner hit a three-run homer to extend the Mets’ lead to 7-2. Houston reliever Fernando Abad threw out Pridie on a grounder in front of the plate. Pinch-hitter Scott Hairston and Reyes were then retired by reliever Enerio Del Rosario on infield ground balls for the final two outs of the inning.

Mets’ reliever Taylor Buchholz set down the first two Astros hitters in the bottom of the sixth. Barmes hit a home run over the left field wall. Pinch-hitter Brian Bogusevic walked and went to second on a single by Bourn. Buchholz struck out J. R. Towles to end the inning. Houston’s Sergio Escalona pitched a perfect top of the seventh. Buchholz then retired the Astros 1-2-3 in the bottom half.

The Mets were set down in order by reliever Jose Valdez in the top of the eighth inning. Michaels doubled off Tim Byrdak to start the bottom half. Johnson drew a walk and Barmes was struck out by Mets’ reliever Jason Isringhausen. A double by Matt Downs scored Michaels for the Astros’ fourth run. Isringhausen retired Bourn and Towles on pop flies to close out the inning. Valdez then shut down the Mets in the top of the ninth.

Francisco Rodriguez got Hunter Pence on a ground ball to third baseman Wright to start the top of the ninth inning. Lee was also retired on a grounder to Wright. Pinch-hitter Brett Wallace lined out to Bay for the final out of the game. The Mets had a victory to close out the series in Houston.