New York Mets
WHAT IT MEANS: With Jose Reyes placed on the bereavement list due to the death of his grandmother, and with Jason Bay given the day off and David Wright and Ike Davis on the disabled list, the Mets started four players who began the season at Triple-A Buffalo -- Justin Turner, Jason Pridie, Ruben Tejada and Dillon Gee. Yet the Mets still won, 7-3, behind Josh Thole’s tiebreaking two-run double in the seventh off ex-Yankee farmhand Daniel McCutchen.
GEE WHIZ: After Gee (5-0) surrendered a two-run homer to Chris Snyder in the second inning, he retired nine straight Pirates, including five consecutively via strikeout. Gee set a career high with eight strikeouts. His previous best was six against the Houston Astros on May 13.
New York Mets
Gee deferred to Jason Isringhausen for a 1-2-3 eighth inning. The rookie’s final line: 7 IP, 5 H, 3 ER, 8 K, 0 BB. He threw 102 pitches (76 strikes).
EASY PASS: The Mets’ opening three runs came without a ball leaving the infield. Daniel Murphy scored in the second inning when Snyder was charged with a passed ball on Pridie’s strikeout. Ruben Tejada’s squibber at the third-base line for an infield single later that inning scored Angel Pagan to pull the Mets even at 2. The Mets took a 3-2 lead in the fifth on Pagan’s bases-loaded infield single.
HIT PARADE: Tejada and Murphy matched career highs with three hits apiece as the Mets produced 15 hits.
STREAKING: Turner has driven in a run in six straight games after his eighth-inning RBI double. He set the franchise rookie record with RBIs in seven straight games earlier in the season, then had a two-game drought before the current streak.
K-ROD TRACKER: Francisco Rodriguez notched his 20th game finished as Terry Collins elected to use him even after two eighth-inning runs made it a non-save situation. Rodriguez is now 35 games finished shy of his contract vesting at $17.5 million for 2012. K-Rod is on pace for 61 games finished, six over the threshold for that vesting option to kick in.
WHAT’S NEXT: R.A. Dickey (2-5, 4.50), despite a partially torn plantar fascia in his right heel, will pitch on turn. He opposes Pittsburgh right-hander James McDonald (3-3, 5.23).