Sunday, May 11, 2014
Flores illness led to Tejada chance for win
By Adam Rubin
Robert Deutsch/USA TODAY SportsNEW YORK -- Wilmer Flores’ illness put Ruben Tejada in position to win Sunday’s game in the 11th-inning. Tejada delivered a bases-loaded walk-off single on an inside fastball from Philadelphia Phillies right-hander Jeff Manship.
Ruben Tejada is swarmed by teammates after delivering a walk-off RBI single in the 11th.
Tejada, who went 2-for-4 with two walks, had been deposed as starting shortstop when Flores was promoted from Triple-A Las Vegas on Friday. Tejada had snapped an 0-for-17 drought with a sixth-inning double.
“We have some type of illness going through the clubhouse. Both he and Gonzo were not even on the field today,” Terry Collins said about Flores and reliever Gonzalez Germen. “I don’t even think Wilmer put his uniform on, to be honest. … I don’t know what it is, but we’ve had some pretty sick guys this week.”
Lucas Duda had been hospitalized on Friday to receive intravenous fluids.
As a result of Flores’ unavailability, Collins used lefty-hitting Curtis Granderson as a pinch hitter against southpaw Cole Hamels, burned his non-starting catcher Travis d’Arnaud in the eighth and had Zack Wheeler lay down a sac bunt in the 11th.
Collins also only had Carlos Torres and Kyle Farnsworth available in his bullpen, and he wanted to stay away from Farnsworth.
“We were out of players. We were done,” Collins said. “We had one more pitcher left and that was probably it.”
As for his heroics in light of his now-backup role, Tejada said: “You have to come here every day and you have to think about the game, no matter who’s playing.”