Author: Paul Zinn
The Mets (5-13) gamely rallied from three runs down tonight at Citi Field, but still lost their second straight to the Astros, 4-3.
Keys to the game:
Hunter Pence's leadoff home run in the eighth broke a 3-3 tie and was the difference.
R.A. Dickey took the loss and dropped to 1-3 on the season, allowing four runs on eight hits in eight innings while striking out four and walking two.
The Astros scored three times in the second, the first coming on a wild pitch and ensuing underhand throw by catcher Josh Thole that might have gotten Brett Wallace had it been harder.
Carlos Beltran's run-scoring double cut the deficit to 3-1, and the Mets tied it on a key two-run homer that hugged the foul pole by Daniel Murphy in the sixth.
At the time it seemed like just what the Mets needed, but they couldn't capitalize on the momentum.
Jose Reyes and Beltran both had three hits, while David Wright and Angel Pagan went hitless. Pagan also left the bases loaded in the first.
To his credit, he drew a leadoff walk in the eighth. Needing a run to tie, the Mets then had runners on the corners with just one out. However, pinch hitter Justin Turner struck out, and Pagan tried to score when the pitch got away from catcher J. R. Towles but was thrown out to end the inning on a unique twin killing.
Then, after leading off with a single, Reyes was doubled off first base in the ninth on an attempted Josh Thole sacrifice bunt.
The Mets look to salvage the final game of the series tomorrow night at 7:10.
Commentary: The Mets need a win - period, and they just can't catch a break. Pagan and Wright continue to play poorly. And Pagan needs to be more careful in the eighth, getting thrown out at the plate on a bad slide with Reyes coming up. R.A. Dickey settled down and pitched well overall, but the three second inning runs, particularly the one on the wild pitch, really hurt.
Will Sommer's Thoughts: It can't get much lower then this, right? Of course, I said that a week ago. At least Jason Bay is back tomorrow. That's something to look forward to. Right?