September 23, 2005: Beltran's Homer in 10th Buries Nats

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Date: September 23, 2005
Mets starter: Steve Trachsel
Mets: 5
Nationals: 2
Winning pitcher: Roberto Hernandez
Key player(s): Cliff Floyd, Carlos Baerga, Carlos Beltran
Key play: Floyd’s two-run single, Baerga’s home run, Beltran’s home run

The Mets faced the Nationals on a Friday night in Washington. The teams played the opener of a three-game series. Carlos Beltran hit a three-run homer in the 10th inning for a 5-2 Mets win.

Steve Trachsel and the Nats’ Esteban Loaiza each pitched three-hit scoreless ball from the first inning to the fifth. Jose Reyes and Victor Diaz got back-to-back singles with one out in the top of the sixth. Beltran singled to load the bases and Cliff Floyd hit a single that brought home Reyes and Diaz. David Wright took a called third strike and Loaiza retired Mike Piazza on a pop-up to shortstop Cristian Guzman to end the inning. Trachsel then shut down the Nationals in the bottom half.

Loaiza hurled a perfect top of the seventh. Ryan Zimmerman doubled against Trachsel to lead off the bottom of the inning. Mets’ reliever Juan Padilla retired the next three batters and Beltran hit a two-out double against Washington’s Jason Bergmann in the top of the eighth. Nationals’ reliever Joey Eischen got Floyd on a fly ball to right fielder Jose Guillen for the inning’s final out. Padilla then surrendered just a walk to Nick Johnson in the bottom half.

Washington reliever Gary Majewski retired the side on three straight infield ground balls in the top of the ninth. Zimmerman singled against the Mets’ Roberto Hernandez with one out in the bottom of the inning. Pinch-hitter Ryan Church was retired on a line drive to shortstop Reyes. Pinch-hitter Carlos Baerga came up to bat and slugged a home run to tie the game at 2-2. Roberto Hernandez then got Majewski to ground out to second baseman Anderson Hernandez and finish off the inning.

Pinch-hitter Marlon Anderson drew a walk with one out in the top of the 10th. Reyes reached on shortstop Deivi Cruz’s error that allowed Anderson to advance to third base. Diaz went down on strikes and Reyes stole second. Beltran followed with a homer to put the Mets ahead by three runs. Floyd tripled and Wright was given an intentional walk. Majewski then got Ramon Castro to fly out to left fielder Brad Wilkerson and end the inning.

Mets’ reliever Aaron Heilman retired Wilkerson on a fly ball to right fielder Diaz to open the bottom of the 10th. Jamey Carroll grounded out to Reyes and a walk to Johnson ensued. Heilman then got Guillen to fly out to Diaz and bring the game to an end. The Mets had a victory in extra innings.