NEW YORK (AP) -- On a chilly, windy, misty spring Friday night at Shea Stadium, Tom Glavine pitched as if it was a beautiful summer afternoon with a gentle breeze and temperatures in the 70s instead of the 40s.
Glavine limited Washington to two hits over seven innings and
Cliff Floyd hit his fourth home run of the season as the New York Mets defeated the Nationals 3-1.The weather suited the left-hander just fine."I like to pitch in that stuff," he said after recording his first win of the season and 263rd of his career. "It was cool but not so cold that you can't feel the ball. You use it to your advantage. I do what I do, throw as many strikes as I can. It worked well."Cold, windy, misty. Those are not ideal hitting conditions. Hitters like warm weather," he said.They came to the wrong place on this night.Washington manager Frank Robinson was less concerned with the weather than he was with the Mets pitcher."Glavine is Glavine," he said. "Glavine has been the same way for 35 years. The only way we are going to get to him is to take him out of his rhythm. We don't seem to come to compete until about the sixth or seventh inning. We weren't going to do anything anyway against him."Glavine (1-2) pitched out of a bases-loaded jam in the first inning when he gave up a pair of walks sandwiched around a double by Jose Guillen. He escaped by retiring Vinny Castilla on a grounder then retired 13 of the next 14 batters before Cristian Guzman opened the sixth with his first home run.That came an inning after Floyd connected against Washington starter Esteban Loaiza (0-1), giving Glavine a 3-0 lead.The Mets have played from behind for much of this season, allowing teams to score in the opening inning 12 times in the first 16 games."It was nice for a change to get out of the first inning," Glavine said. "We've been giving up a lot of first inning runs. It's always important to come off the field with a chance to get on top. It was a mental boost to me."The Mets scored two runs in the third when Kaz Matsui opened with a single and Carlos Beltran followed with a double. Groundouts by Mike Piazza and Floyd drove in the runs.New York could have had more but Doug Mientkiewicz, who had singled and advanced on a wild pitch, was thrown out at the plate by left fielder J.J. Davis as he tried to score on a two-out single by David Wright.An inning later, the Mets loaded the bases with one out but Loaiza retired Beltran and Piazza to end the inning.In the sixth, with Joe Horgan pitching, Jose Reyes beat out a one-out bunt for a single. After a force play, Castilla missed Beltran's grounder for an error, giving the Mets runners at first and third. Hector Carrasco relieved and struck out Piazza to end the inning.Glavine struck out seven and walked three. Roberto Hernandez relieved in the eighth and hit Tony Blanco with his first pitch. Brad Wilkerson followed with a double, moving Blanco to third. Guzman was retired on a tap in front of the plate and Jose Vidro
struck out. Then Hernandez got Guillen on a popup to end the threat."You don't want to go through an inning like that," Hernandez said. "The competitiveness comes out. You have to make quality pitch after quality pitch. They're either going to get me or I'm going to get them."Braden Looper pitched the ninth for his second save in four opportunities.
With the gametime temperature at 49 degrees and a 10 mph wind, plate umpire Tim Welke allowed the pitchers to blow on their hands on the mound. ... Mientkiewicz was hit in the face by Brian Schneider's throw as he took second base on a wild pitch in the third inning. He was not injured. ... Loaiza threw 113 pitches over five innings. ... Castilla's error in the sixth inning ended his major league-record streak of 272 consecutive errorless chances at third base. The streak stretched back to July 4 last year when Castilla was with Colorado.