By Jason Schott - Associate Editor - @JESchott19
Bartolo Colon had a vintage performance on Wednesday afternoon as the Mets beat the St. Louis Cardinals 3-2 to avoid a sweep.
Colon went 8 innings and allowed just 1 run on 4 hits, and improved his record to 7-5. Colon also had a nice day at the plate, as he doubled and scored a run.
Mets catcher Taylor Teagarden said of Colon, "He got a lot of weak contact. That's exactly what you want from your starter on a tough day game, a get-away game after already being down 0-2 in the series."
The Cardinals' only run against Colon came when leadoff hitter Matt Carpenter hit a home run to open the bottom of the first to make it 1-0.
It stayed that way until the 6th. Colon opened the top of the 6th with a double. It was Colon's first hit since June 10, 2005 when he was with the Angels and got a hit off the Mets' Mike DeJean. That broke an 0-for-43 stretch for Colon.
Colon's hit signaled a turning point to Cardinals starting pitcher Lance Lynn. "I thought there was no way he was swinging, and he swung. In all honesty, that at-bat right there cost us the game. You don't expect him to be the one that starts something like that, and he did," said Lynn.
Eric Young, Jr., followed with a double of his own to score Colon and tie it up at 1. After Daniel Murphy grounded out, David Wright singled home Young to make it 2-1 Mets.
Young delivered again in the 7th, as he got an RBI on a ground-rule double to make it 3-1 Mets.
Jenrry Mejia replaced Colon in the 9th, and had a tough outing. Carpenter doubled and then Jon Jay was hit by a pitch to open the inning. Mejia then got Matt Holliday to hit into a double play. Allen Craig then singled to score Carpenter and cut the Mets' lead to 3-2.
Mets Manager Terry Collins brought in Dana Eveland to face Matt Adams, playing the lefty-lefty matchup. Collins said of Adams, "You keep reading every day in the notes that he's won game after game with a home run or a hit off right-handed pitching. So he was going to have to get a hit off a lefty."
Eveland got Adams to ground to the left side, and with the shift on, third baseman David Wright fielded it at the shortstop position and threw Adams out to end the game. Eveland earned just his second career save and first since 2005.
This three game set in St. Louis is the start of a 16-game stretch that will make or break the Mets' season. Starting Thursday night, the Mets go down to Miami, where they have never done well, to take on the Marlins in a four-game series. They return home for two games on Tuesday the 24th and Wednesday the 25th against the American League's best, the Oakland Athletics.
They then hit the road again for another seven-game road trip. It starts with a four-game set against the Pittsburgh Pirates, who are playing great, beginning on Thursday the 26th, followed by a three-game set in Atlanta from June 30th through July 2nd.
If they can split these 16, they likely will still be in the National League East race. Nobody has pulled away in the division, and it is tight at the top with the Nationals, Braves, and Marlins within a game of each other, the Phillies 4 1/2 games out, and the Mets just 5 1/2 games behind Washington.
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