Usually, it's Willis who's lights outs whenever he takes the hill against the Mets – he was 5-0 with a 2.31 ERA in seven career starts against New York – but Ishii did his best to steal that crown on Saturday, notching his first win as a Met.
Coming off a seven-run performance Monday at Atlanta, Ishii limited the Marlins to one run over 6-2/3 innings Saturday, scattering five hits and three walks.
Ishii also contributed the Mets' first RBI of the game with a run-scoring single off Willis in the fourth inning, a party Piazza would join with run-scoring hits in the fifth, seventh and eighth innings.
Two of Piazza's hits were doubles, and Piazza's three RBI were his first since May 9. He ended the day hitting .247, continuing a turn-around that saw him hitting just .207 on May 15.
The Mets improved to 26-24, two games above .500 and two games behind the division-leading Marlins and Atlanta Braves.
|IN THE ZONE: Miguel Cairo scored three runs Saturday and could be quietly pushing Kaz Matsui out of the picture.|
Although Matsui probably will be able to play before Beltran, manager Willie Randolph has taken full advantage of Matsui's injury, playing Miguel Cairo – who went 3-for-5 with three runs scored on Saturday, raising his average to .293 - regularly.
RUMOR MILL: According to the New York Post, the Mets have no interest in claiming former Reds closer Danny Graves off waivers. New York did inquire about reliever LaTroy Hawkins before the Cubs traded him to the Giants, the newspaper reported, but no deal was ever close.
MINOR LEAGUE REPORT: Jason Scobie took his second loss in three starts for the Triple-A Norfolk Tides (28-22, 5.0 GA) Saturday, despite holding the Ottawa Lynx to two runs and striking out four over seven innings. The Tides fell, 3-1, with only John Pachot's first homer of the year to provide offense. …
The Binghamton Mets (23-22, 3.0 GB) improved to a game over .500 with a 4-2 win over Trenton at NYSEG Stadium Saturday. Ken Chenard pitched five innings of two-run ball for his fourth win and both Mike Jacobs and Joe Hietpas turned in 2-for-3 days. …
The St. Lucie Mets (18-31, 10.5 GB) edged Clearwater, 7-6, riding three-run home runs from outfielder Alhaji Turay and third baseman Shawn Bowman. Evan MacLane started for St. Lucie and struggled, giving up five runs in five innings. Henry Owens picked up his second win with 2-2/3 innings of one-run relief. …
Starter Jose Sanchez continued his run for the Hagerstown Suns (31-17, 2.5 GA), holding Delmarva to two runs on four hits over six innings to improve to 9-0 this season. Carlos Gomez and Jesus Flores homered for the division-leading Suns.
The Mets have an opportunity to turn their road trip full circle on Sunday, going for a four-game series sweep of the Florida Marlins after being swept by the Atlanta Braves in the first leg of their journey.
To do it, they'll need to summon another vintage performance from Tom Glavine (3-5, 5.43), who reeled off two victories in a row against the Cardinals and Reds before running into the big, bad Braves his last time out. Josh Beckett (6-2, 2.63) provides a tough customer on the other end.
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