Thursday, April 16, 2015

Mets complete home-opening sweep of Phillies

Lucas Duda and Travis d'Arnaud's first home runs of the year supported Jon Niese's first win as the Mets earned their first series sweep by topping the Phillies 6-1 on Jackie Robinson Day at Citi Field in their first game without David Wright.
Niese scattered nine hits, holding the Phillies to one run over 6 1/3 innings despite the best efforts of Odubel Herrera and Cody Asche. The pair combined for six hits and four doubles off Niese, but the lefty worked out of multiple jams and stranded eight runners. The Phillies left 11 men on base in all.
d'Arnaud and Duda supplied the power with solo shots off Phillies starterJerome Williams, who was tagged for five runs (four earned) on 10 hits in five innings. d'Arnaud, batting in the No. 2. hole, gave the Mets the lead with a solo shot to left in the third.
Duda launched a solo homer of his own into the seats beyond the right-center-field fence in the fifth and scored d'Arnaud with a sixth inning RBI double.
Recalled from Triple-A Las Vegas to replace Wright, who landed on the disabled list Wednesday with a strained hamstring, Eric Campbell singled, scored and made an exceptional barehanded play to rob Chase Utley of a bunt single in the fifth.
The Phillies are 6-20 against the Mets since August 2013.
"I see the discrepancy in the win-loss record," Asche said. "Do I have an explanation? No. Do I wish it was different? Yeah. If we are going to make moves, we have to take care of the teams in our division. So we definitely have to play better against the Mets."
Niese wiggles out of trouble: The lefty escaped considerable jams in the second, fourth, fifth and sixth innings to remain relatively unscathed. With runners on first and second in the second inning, Niese struck out Ben Revereand retired Williams on a lineout. In the fourth Revere grounded out to end a threat. A Darin Ruf lineout got Niese out of a bases-loaded spot in the fifth. He induced a double play to end a threat in the sixth. And after Niese was pulled with one out and two on in the seventh, reliever Carlos Torres ended the inning by inducing a double play with his first pitch.
Phillies remain punchless: The Phillies' offensive issues really came to light this week against the Mets. They were 2-for-16 with runners in scoring position Wednesday, and 3-for-27 with runners in scoring position for the series. More >
Mets take advantage of Philly miscues: Twice the Mets capitalized on Phillies defensive mistakes that won't show up in the box score as errors, but led to runs all the same. Campbell didn't expect to advance to second on Williams' wild pitch in the second inning, but catcher Cameron Rupp spun around four times before finding the ball sitting behind home-plate umpire Dan Bellino, allowing Campbell to reach second. "I thought he [Rupp] was trying to trick me," said Campbell, who scored on Juan Lagares' RBI single.
In the fourth, Asche bobbled a potential double-play ball off the bat of Ruben Tejada that would have ended the inning. The Phillies got just one out, and Niese singled home an insurance run a few pitches later.
Williams struggles: The Phillies' right-hander allowed 10 hits, five runs (four earned runs), one walk, two home runs and struck out one in five innings. His night included leadoff home runs to d'Arnaud and Duda in the third and fifth innings, respectively. More >
"I'm not a flight sleeper and I didn't have the best sleeping conditions around me, you can say .... I didn't catch a middle seat, thankfully. But there was a baby close by." -- Campbell, on playing on just three hours sleep after taking a red-eye flight from Triple-A Las Vegas.
"Couldn't come up with a drive to put up a crooked number. We had the opportunities. Could not do it." -- Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg, on his team going 2-for-16 with runners in scoring position.
With the win, the Mets completed just the third three-game sweep of a home-opening series in their 53-year history. New York previously accomplished the feat in 2012 against the Braves and 2005 over the Astros. More >
Phillies: Left-hander Cole Hamels opens a four-game series Thursday night at 7:05 p.m. ET against the Nationals at Nationals Park. Hamels allowed two hits, one run, two walks and struck out five in a 3-2 victory last Saturday. Hamels got the no-decision as he waits for the Phillies to score their first run for him while he is in the game.
Mets: Right-hander Dillon Gee looks to rebound after a tough first start as the Mets host the revamped Miami Marlins at Citi Field on Thursday at 7:10 p.m. ET in the first series between the two teams this season. In the past Gee has handled slugger Giancarlo Stanton, and the reigning home run champ has yet to go deep this season.

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