DENVER (AP) -- A week of turmoil ended on a high note for the New York Mets.
Mike Pelfrey carried a shutout into the sixth inning, Carlos Beltran hit a two-run homer and the Mets beat the Colorado Rockies 3-1 on Sunday to wrap up a winning road trip under interim manager Jerry Manuel.He took over for the fired Willie Randolph after the Mets beat the Los Angeles Angels to open a six-game trip last Monday. New York lost in Manuel's debut on the bench, but rebounded to beat the Angels and take two of three from the Rockies.Despite winning three of the last four, Manuel wasn't quite ready to say the Mets have things going in the right direction."We still have to prove we can be consistent and we still have to show we can be good at home," he said. "The jury is out. We have three big games with Seattle and then the Yankees. I would like to see us more consistent offensively before I make that statement."Beltran, on the other hand, thinks the Mets have turned things around."Aren't we winning games?" he said. "We are doing things right."Pelfrey (4-6) gave Manuel a reason to be optimistic about the future, at least. He allowed only three hits and five walks over 5 2/3 innings to record his second straight win, and hasn't lost since May 26 against Florida."Pelfrey was real difficult to hit today," Rockies manager Clint Hurdle said. "He had late, violent action we didn't see last time we faced him."Billy Wagner pitched the ninth for his 17th save in 22 opportunities.It was the first series loss in the last six for the Rockies, their last coming in a sweep by the Chicago Cubs from May 30-June 1.For the second straight day, Jose Reyes led off the game with a triple, and he gave the Mets a 1-0 lead when he scored on David Wright's infield single.The Rockies missed a chance to tie the game later in the first. Jeff Baker and Matt Holliday hit consecutive one-out singles to put runners on the corners. Pelfrey threw a wild pitch to walk Todd Helton, but Baker hesitated coming down the third base line and was thrown out."It was a missed opportunity," Hurdle said. "We had three different innings where we left two men on base."The Mets took a 3-0 lead in the third when David Wright walked with two outs and Beltran hit the first pitch from Greg Reynolds (2-5) into the right-field seats for his 11th of the year."It was supposed to be in, but it was over the middle and up and he made me pay for it," Reynolds said of the fastball to Beltran.Pelfrey escaped further trouble in the fourth. After retiring the first two batters, Brad Hawpe walked and Troy Tulowitzki doubled to right. Instead of issuing an intentional walk to face Reynolds, the Mets pitched to Yorvit Torrealba, who flied out to left to end the inning.Pelfrey was lifted after walking Helton and Hawpe in the sixth inning, and reliever Joe Smith got Tulowitzki to ground out to end the inning.Manuel said he pulled Pelfrey because he was tiring after 96 pitches."When a guy is fatigued, the ball is either down in the strike zone or up out of the strike zone," Manuel said. "That is where he was."Hawpe walked four times and didn't record an official at-bat.The Rockies got their only run on Torrealba's leadoff homer in the seventh.Reynolds gave up three runs and six hits in seven innings.
Manuel said X-rays on Mets C Brian Schneider's left hand were negative. Schneider was hit by two foul balls during Saturday's loss but stayed in the game through seven innings. He was not in the lineup Sunday. ... The Rockies announced that INF Clint Barmes (sprained right knee) will be activated Monday when the team is in Kansas City. Barmes has missed 27 games since going on the DL on May 24. INF Ian Stewart will be optioned to Triple-A Colorado Springs. ... Mets 2B Luis Castillo (left thigh) was out of the lineup for the second time in three games. Manuel said he is day-to-day. ... Holliday has hit safely in 24 straight games against the Mets.