NEW YORK (AP) -- Willie Randolph will have a winning record in
his first season as New York Mets manager. He wants an even better
one next year.
"It's nice to finish strong and end the season on a good
note," Randolph said after the Mets beat the Colorado Rockies 3-2
Friday night. "It's nicer to be above .500 than below it. But .500
is mediocre. We want to be better than that."
The Mets have put on a finishing kick to reach 82-78, winning 11
of their last 14 games. Kris Benson pitched in with his first
victory in six weeks and Marlon Anderson and Mike Jacobs homered
for the Mets, who had not finished with a winning record since
Benson (10-8) limited the Rockies to six hits, striking out two
and walking one before leaving with one out in the eighth. He had
been 0-4 in seven starts since beating Pittsburgh 6-2 on Aug. 16.
Aaron Heilman relieved Benson and earned his fifth save in six
"It's been a while since I had a win," Benson said. "I'm glad
to get one in the win column and get my 10th win. That was my main
goal. Double digits is always a goal, especially after I missed the
first month. Considering that, I feel good about the way the season
Benson had a pectoral muscle strain coming out of spring
training and did not win his first game until May 5. He was 9-4
after his last victory.
Randolph was pleased to have Benson finish on a positive note.
"He really needed that one," the manager said. "He's been up
and down, sort of the tale of two seasons. This was a good win for
him to finish up with."
The Mets took the lead in the first inning when Anderson and
Carlos Beltran both singled with one out against Byung-Hyun Kim
Cliff Floyd bounced to first, where Todd Helton stepped on the
base for the putout and then tried to get Anderson in a rundown off
third base. But Helton threw behind the runner to third and
Anderson beat Garrett Atkins' relay home, bowling over catcher
Jacobs opened the second with his 10th home run of the season,
his second in two nights and sixth in the last 12 games.
The Rockies tied it in the fourth when Helton walked with one
out and Matt Holliday followed with his 19th home run.
"Our young players give us reason to be optimistic for the
future," Colorado manager Clint Hurdle said. "Holliday continues
to improve and should become a good offensive player."
Anderson put the Mets back in front in the bottom of the fifth
when he led off with his seventh home run of the season, connecting
on a 3-2 pitch.
Mike Piazza was 0-for-4. A free agent after the season, this is
expected to be his final weekend with the Mets.
Jacobs' home run traveled an estimated 365 feet. Holliday's
went 380 feet and Anderson's went 455. ... The Mets turned
inning-ending double plays in the second, fourth and eighth
innings. ... CF Corey Sullivan robbed Floyd of an extra-base hit
with a leaping catch at the wall in the fifth. ... The loss was the
94th of the season for the Rockies, matching last year's total.