Timo Perez, left, had seen enough of losing. His ninth-inning HR ended the Mets' skid.
Perez, a fifth inning insertion for Roger Cedeno, hit a two-run
homer with two outs in the ninth inning as New York snapped a
12-game skid by beating the Colorado Rockies 5-2 Saturday night."The whole time Roger was telling me to be ready because his shoulder we bothering him,'' said Perez, who also singled in the seventh inning. "I was ready from the first inning on and came through for the ballclub in a key situation.''With the Rockies leading 2-1, closer Jose Jimenez (2-9) retired
the first two men in the ninth before Joe McEwing hit a single past
third. Perez then hit a 1-1 pitch into the Colorado bullpen in
right for his seventh homer of the season. "I was looking for a pitch to hit and had a good swing,'' Perez
said. "It was so emotional. All I thought about was ending the
Mets manager Bobby Valentine credited McEwing with the key
at-bat of the inning.
"Joe doesn't give up, and he was the batter up there, and I
thought, 'who better to have up there for us with two outs,''' New
York manager Bobby Valentine said. "Timo was confident tonight. He
was watching what Jimenez was throwing and that's as big a home run
as we have had all year.''
Jimenez and Rockies manager Clint Hurdle were both ejected when
Jimenez hit pinch-hitter John Valentin with the next pitch. Justin
Speier than allowed a single to Tony Tarasco and a two-run double
to Roberto Alomar.
The Mets, who had been 0-60 this year when trailing after eight innings, avoided matching the third longest losing streak in team history. They also lost 13 straight in 1980. The franchise record is 17 consecutive losses in the expansion 1962 season."It's a great feeling because it's been awhile since we walked
out on the field and shook hands. We got to do that tonight, and a
lot of guys participated,'' Valentine said. "We had great pitching
all night long, and we got a win and hopefully we can keep it
David Weathers (5-3) pitched 1 1/3 scoreless innings to earn the
victory. Armando Benitez got three outs for his 28th save in 31
chances, retiring Jay Payton with the bases loaded to end it.
Mike Hampton limited his former team to one run and six hits in
seven innings. Hampton won the NLCS MVP in 2000 as he helped lead
the Mets to the World Series before leaving to sign a $121 million,
eight-year contract with the Rockies."I feel badly for Mike because he gave us seven solid
innings,'' Hurdle said. "We're one out away and Jimenez puts a
pitch where he'd like it back and Perez puts a good swing on it.''Todd Helton hit a sacrifice fly in the first inning and Colorado
scored its other run on a wild pitch by Steve Trachsel in the
third. Trachsel allowed two unearned runs and four hits in five
innings.Hampton retired the first nine batters before Alomar led off the
fourth with his 200th career homer to get New York within 2-1.Hampton worked out of a first-and-third jam in the sixth after
pinch-hitter Jeromy Burnitz reached on an infield single, moved to
third on a ground out and Raul Gonzalez's infield single to
shortstop. Mike Piazza hit into a double play to end the threat.
The Mets activated 3B Edgardo Alfonzo from the 15-day DL
before the game. To make room for Alfonzo, the Mets optioned Ty
Wigginton to Triple-A Norfolk. ... Mets 1B Mo Vaughn had two errors
on misplayed grounders in the first and third innings. ... The
Rockies sat out Larry Walker for the third straight game with a
dislocated rib. Walker will be available for pinch-hitting only on
Sunday. ... Colorado's Juan Pierre has 21 bunt singles.