May 8, 2010: Blanco's Homer in 11th Beats Giants

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Date: May 8, 2010
Mets starter: Johan Santana
Mets: 5
Giants: 4
Winning pitcher: Hisanori Takahashi
Key player(s): Henry Blanco, Angel Pagan, Jason Bay
Key play: Pagan’s triple in 2nd, Blanco’s home run in 11th

The Mets faced the Giants on a Saturday afternoon at Citi Field. The teams played the second part of a three-game weekend series. Henry Blanco hit a home run in the 11th inning to give the Mets a 5-4 win over San Francisco.

Mets’ starter Johan Santana pitched a perfect top of the first inning. The Giants’ Todd Wellemeyer issued walks to Angel Pagan and Luis Castillo to begin the bottom half. A force play ground ball by Jose Reyes advanced Pagan from second to third base. Angel came home on Jason Bay’s ensuing sacrifice fly. Wellemeyer struck out David Wright to end the inning and Bengie Molina opened the top of the second with a single to left field. Santana then retired the next three San Francisco hitters.

Ike Davis drew a walk to lead off the bottom of the second inning. Jeff Francoeur was hit by a pitch and Blanco went down on strikes. A sacrifice bunt by Santana moved the runners to second and third base. Pagan hit a triple to score Davis and Francoeur for a 3-0 Mets lead. Castillo lined out to shortstop Juan Uribe to end the inning and Santana shut down the Giants in the top of the third. Wellemeyer then hurled a scoreless bottom half.

Andres Torres and Pablo Sandoval started the top of the fourth with back-to-back singles. Eli Whiteside grounded out to first baseman Davis, putting runners at second and third. Aubrey Huff followed with a sacrifice fly to bring home Torres. Uribe singled to score Sandoval and cut the Mets’ lead to 3-2. Santana retired Mark DeRosa on an inning-ending pop-up to second baseman Castillo. Wellemeyer held the Mets to a single by Blanco in the bottom half. Johan then set down the Giants 1-2-3 in the top of the fifth.

Reyes drew a one-out walk in the bottom of the fifth inning. Jose stole second base and scored on a single by Bay. San Francisco reliever Brandon Medders came in to pitch and completed the inning with no further scoring. Santana and Medders each hurled a scoreless sixth. In the seventh, Johan set down the Giants in order and Castillo started the bottom of the inning with a single to left field. Medders then retired the next three New York batters to close out the inning.

Pinch-hitter Nate Schierholtz singled to begin the top of the eighth. Aaron Rowand hit a single to send Schierholtz to third base. Torres lined out to shortstop Reyes and a sacrifice fly by Sandoval drove home Schierholtz. Whiteside singled off Mets’ reliever Fernando Nieve, moving Rowand to second. A single by Huff against reliever Pedro Feliciano plated Rowand to tie the game at 4-4. Jenrry Mejia came in to pitch and fanned Uribe for the final out of the inning. San Francisco’s Jeremy Affeldt struck out Davis and Francoeur to start the bottom half. Blanco got an infield single and moved to third on Fernando Tatis’s pinch-hit double to right field. Affeldt then retired Pagan on an inning-ending grounder to second baseman Matt Downs.

Mets’ reliever Francisco Rodriguez retired all three Giants batters in the top of the ninth. Affeldt pitched a perfect bottom of the inning to send the game onward. In the top of the 10th, Rodriguez hurled a scoreless inning despite walks to pinch-hitter John Bowker and Whiteside. San Francisco’s Guillermo Mota set down the Mets in order in the bottom half. Hisanori Takahashi then came in to pitch for New York and recorded two strikeouts in a perfect top of the 11th inning.

Blanco came up to lead off the bottom of the 11th. Henry homered off Mota to end the game. The Mets had a victory with a home run on the game’s final pitch for the second consecutive day.