Phillies Slam Mets in Extra Innings 4-2

It seems that no matter how long a game takes these days, the Mets somehow find a way to lose. It was no different on Saturday afternoon at Shea Stadium. The New Yorkers took the Philadelphia Phillies into overtime, but when it was all over, the Mets came up short once again, losing 4-2 in 11 innings. Captain John Franco (0-1) took the loss for New York.

Both teams scored in the opening inning. The Phillies, as they have the entire series so far, jumped on the Mets in the first frame. Placido Polanco, who had a huge game, doubled and quickly scored when Jim Thome also drilled a two-base hit. It appeared as if the Phillies would dispose of Mets starter Jae Weong Seo in rapid fashion. But Seo retired Bobby Abreu and Tyler Houston, thereby limiting the damage.

The Mets retaliated in the bottom of the inning. Rookie Jeff Duncan homered , the first of his career off Phillies starter Brandon Duckworth, to even the score at 1-1.

"He showed us some power, some speed, some bunts today. He can do a lot of things, that's what we like about him," Mets manager Art Howe said to the Associated Press.

Seo and Duckworth settled down and both pitched shut out baseball until the sixth inning, when the Phillies reclaimed the lead at 2-1. Tyler Houston, just off the disabled list, lined a homerun over the right field wall, for his second homerun of the season.

Seo bowed out after six innings. He allowed seven hits and two walks, while striking out four. David Weathers replaced him in the seventh, but the Phillies reached him for a couple of hits. Mike Stanton, himself fresh off the disabled list, bailed out Weathers, as the Phillies failed to score.

Duckworth and Rheal Cormier limited the Mets to five hits over the first seven innings. Ex-Met Turk Wendell took over in the eighth, and the Mets managed to tie the score against him.

The rookies took over. Jose Reyes singled and Jeff Duncan sacrificed him to second. Jeromy Burnitz was walked intentionally. Raul Gonzalez singled home Reyes with the tying run, but Burnitz was nailed at the plate to retire the side.

The game then remained tied into extra innings. Both closers entered the game for their respective teams. Armando Benitez twirled a scoreless 8th and 9th innings, but the Mets could do nothing against the Phillies Jose Mesa.

Finally in the top of the 11th inning, Philadelphia broke through against John Franco. With one out, Jason Michaels singled. He moved to third on a single by Marlon Byrd. Polanco delivered Michaels with a sacrifice fly to left field, giving the Phils a 3-2 lead. Jim Thome walked. Philadelphia tacked on a gift run when young Reyes couldn't handle Bobby Abreu's bouncer, and Byrd scored, upping the Philadelphia advantage to two runs.

Jose Mesa (4-5) set down the Mets in the bottom of the 11th and the Phillies had their third straight win against the New Yorkers. The Mets have not won on the homestand, having now lost six straight, three to Atlanta and three to the Phils.

The two teams play their final game before the All-Star break on Sunday. Brett Myers (9-6) will take on Tom Glavine (6-9), who will be working on short rest. The two teams are going in opposite directions. The Phillies at 52-39, currently have a stronghold on the Wild Card, while the Mets are now just playing for pride, while management maps out a housecleaning before the July 31st trading deadline.

"We try to make something happen, especially in extra innings," Polanco said to the Associated Press. "After the ninth inning, you just want to win the game, no matter how."

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