<
>

Matsui ties it, Floyd wins it

5/18/2004

NEW YORK (AP) -- The breaks went to the New York Mets this time.
They got the broken-bat, two-out hit by Kaz Matsui that tied the
score in the ninth inning and the game-winner by Cliff Floyd a
moment later.

The way Tom Glavine saw it, they were due for the turnaround.

"We've given up so many of those," Glavine said. "You hope it
all evens out."

For one night, it did. The Mets rallied for two runs with two
outs in the bottom of the ninth to defeat the St. Louis Cardinals
5-4.

The Mets were cornered, trailing by a run against Cardinals
closer Jason Isringhausen. But Mike Cameron worked out a leadoff
walk and New York had a life.

Isringhausen thought that was the turning point.,

"I beat myself by giving up the leadoff walk," he said. "You
can't put the leadoff guy on."

After the Mets bunted Cameron over, pinch-hitter Karim Garcia
also walked. But Isringhausen came back to strike out Eric Valent.
Now, one out away, he went to work on Matsui. On the 1-0 pitch,
Matsui swung at an inside cutter and broke his bat. The ball
carried just beyond the infield, scoring the tying run.

"I made a good pitch," Isringhausen said. "I shattered his
bat. That's part of baseball."

Now the Mets went for the win with Floyd, whose two-run homer in
the sixth had sliced the Cardinals' 4-1 lead to 4-3.

In a similar situation in the seventh, Floyd had struck out
against reliever Steve Kline.

"I was mad at myself," he said. "I took my pitch and missed
his pitch."

This time, Floyd smacked a foul ball off his right ankle. Just
back from the disabled list, he hopped around home plate in
anguish.

"I crushed myself," he said. "It woke me up. It doesn't hurt
at all right now."

That's because Floyd followed with the RBI single that gave the
Mets their sixth win this season in their last at-bat. The win put
New York (19-20) within one game of .500.

"That's been the goal," said Glavine, who had trouble getting
the third out in a couple of innings, putting the Mets behind
early. Scott Rolen delivered a pair of two-out RBI hits as St.
Louis built a 4-1 lead.

The Cardinals nicked Glavine for two runs with two outs in the
first inning. Albert Pujols singled and scored on a double by
Rolen. Then Jim Edmonds singled, scoring Rolen.

St. Louis added a run in the third on Mike Matheny's second home
run of the season.

The Mets got that run back in their half of the third when Jason
Phillips hit the foul pole in left field for his second homer of
the year and second in two games.

Glavine again retired the first two batters in the fifth before
Edgar Renteria, Pujols and Rolen delivered consecutive singles to
make it 4-1. Glavine allowed eight hits and struck out six in six
innings.

The Mets closed the gap in the sixth when Matsui opened with a
double, and Floyd followed with his third home run of the season
against Cardinals starter Matt Morris.

Mike Piazza and Phillips added a pair of singles sandwiched
around Morris' strikeout of Ty Wigginton. Then Cameron hit a ball
in the hole that third baseman Rolen dove for and tossed backhanded
to force Phillips at second. Morris then retired Joe McEwing to end
the inning.

In the seventh, Cardinals left fielder Ray Lankford dropped a
fly ball for a two-base error, finishing Morris. Kline relieved,
retiring Matsui on a pop fly and striking out Floyd, leaving the
tying run stranded on second base and Floyd furious -- until he got
another chance in the ninth.

Mets reliever Ricky Bottalico (1-0) pitched two scoreless
innings to earn his first major league victory since 2001.

Game notes
Phillips homered for the second straight at-bat. He snapped
a 13th-inning tie Sunday in New York's 3-2 victory at Houston. ...
3B Rolen also made a sparkling backhanded stab to rob Matsui of an
extra-base hit in the first inning. ... Piazza, starting at first
base, made a two-base error in the sixth inning when Lankford's
shot glanced off his glove and into right field. It was his second
error at first base. Glavine retired the next two batters.