Tuesday, June 03, 2014
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Flores Drives In Six Runs As Mets Rout Phillies

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[June 03, 2014]  PHILADELPHIA -- The New York Mets displayed an impressive kick at the end of their marathon series against Philadelphia on Monday night, battering the Phillies 11-2 as shortstop Wilmer Flores hit his first career grand slam and drove in a career-high six runs.

"If you're going to be out there for all that time, you might as well win the games," Mets manager Terry Collins said, after his team won for the fourth time in five games in the series, and the sixth time in seven games overall.

It was also the Mets' ninth victory in their last 10 games in Philadelphia.

The series included three straight games of 11 innings or more, two of which went 14. The last time two teams played three straight games of 11-plus innings was in 1991, when Seattle and Toronto did so.

Collins called the series "a great start" to an 11-game road trip.

"To go through what we went through, we're tired," he said. "I'm not going to make any bones about it: This team's tired. ... I salute them."

Flores began the night hitting .222 in 14 games this season. He was without a homer, and had driven in a single run. But he doubled in two runs in a four-run sixth inning, and hit his grand slam off reliever Phillippe Aumont in a six-run ninth.

It was the second career homer for the second-year infielder, who battled an ankle injury as a rookie last season and is still trying to establish himself.

"Thank god I'm healthy this year," he said. "Tonight meant a lot. I just want to prove to them that I can do the job. I know I'm good and I can do this."

Third baseman David Wright and outfielder Curtis Granderson drove in two runs each for the Mets, who handed the Phillies their seventh loss on an 11-game homestand.

"We have to go on the road and start winning series," catcher Carlos Ruiz said. "Anything can happen."

Philadelphia begins a six-game road swing in Washington on Tuesday.

"We didn't play that well this homestand," second baseman Chase Utley said. "Nothing we can do about it now. We have to go on the road and win games."

Mets starter Bartolo Colon (5-5) allowed two runs on six hits in seven innings of work to win his third straight start. He struck out five and walked three. His scoreless-inning streak was snapped at 16 1/3, when the Phillies scored on a groundout by first baseman Ryan Howard in the sixth.

Colon departed after allowing two hits to start the eighth. Jeurys Familia, the third of four Mets pitchers, uncorked a wild pitch later in the inning, allowing a run to score.

Wright, 4-for-24 in the series before he batted in the sixth inning, doubled off Roberto Hernandez (2-3) to score center fielder Matt den Dekker and second baseman Daniel Murphy, who started the inning with singles.

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Later in the inning, Flores blooped a double inside the right-field line to chase in two more runs. It came immediately after Utley booted a potential inning-ending double-play ball.

Granderson, mired in a 2-for-32 slump, grounded a single through the right side of a drawn-in infield to drive in two runs in the ninth off reliever Jake Diekman. Three batters later, Flores hit his grand slam.

"It felt good," he said. "Been struggling the last couple games, and I didn't feel good my first two at-bats, but as the game was going, I made the adjustment, so I put a good swing on it."

Hernandez went 5 1/3 innings and yielded five runs (four earned) on five hits. He struck out five and walked two.

The Mets took a 1-0 lead on back-to-back doubles by right fielder Bobby Abreu and first baseman Lucas Duda in the second inning, and den Dekker made two sparkling defensive plays to thwart the Phillies early in the game.

Den Dekker, shipped to Triple-A Las Vegas on Sunday, was recalled Monday when fellow outfielder Juan Lagares was placed on the disabled list because of a strained intercostal muscle. He made a leaping grab at the fence to rob Howard of a home run in the second inning, then gunned down Reid Brignac at the plate in the third after a single by Ben Revere.

NOTES: Phillies LHP Cliff Lee, placed on the disabled list May 21 due to a strained pitching elbow, has not yet been cleared to begin throwing, but he will accompany the team on the six-game road trip that begins Tuesday in Washington. "He's getting a strength test pretty much daily to see how he is," said manager Ryne Sandberg, who added that there is a chance Lee could begin throwing during the trip. ... Philadelphia SS Jimmy Rollins was not in the starting lineup, as Sandberg elected to rest him. ... Mets 1B Lucas Duda was hitless in 16 consecutive extra-inning at-bats (dating back to May 2013) before he hit a decisive two-run homer in the 11th Sunday. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, that is the longest hitless string in extra innings by a Met since Vance Wilson went 0-for-17 in such situations from 2001-04.

[ 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved.]

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