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Wilson's career day leads New York

9/8/2002

PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- The New York Mets are enjoying one of their
best runs in a lost season thanks to some unheralded backups.

Vance Wilson, starting in place of star catcher Mike Piazza,
homered and drove in a career-high four runs as the Mets matched a
season high with their sixth straight victory by beating the
Philadelphia Phillies 11-3 on Sunday.

Wilson was a late addition to the lineup when Piazza was
scratched with a groin injury.

"You have to be ready when you're thrusted in the lineup,''
Wilson said. "I feel I'm always ready to play when I come to the
park.''

Ty Wigginton, filling in for Mo Vaughn at first base, added a
home run and three RBI for the Mets, who had six players with at
least two hits -- including Wilson and Wigginton.

New York finished with 15 hits, one shy of a season high. The
only starter without one was Edgardo Alfonzo, who went 0-for-2 with
a walk and two runs scored.

The Mets have scored 49 runs during the six-game winning streak.

"We're scoring runs, and when you do that you feel more
relaxed,'' manager Bobby Valentine said.

John Thomson (9-11) allowed three runs on six hits in five
innings for the win. He got 10 straight outs on flyballs at one
point.

Satoru Komiyama pitched three scoreless innings for the Mets,
who began their streak after setting an NL record with 15
consecutive losses at home and dropping 17 of 20 overall.

Philadelphia prospect Marlon Byrd made his major league debut.
The center fielder went 0-for-3 with a walk and a run scored.

Pat Burrell hit his 35th homer in the fifth as the Phillies lost
for the sixth time in seven games.

The Mets broke the game open in the third inning, scoring five
runs off Brandon Duckworth (6-9). After consecutive walks to Jeromy
Burnitz and Wigginton, Wilson connected for a home run off the
facing of the upper deck -- his fifth of the season.

"After he struck me out on some nasty pitches the first time
up, he missed with a bad changeup,'' Wilson said.

One out later, Thomson and Roger Cedeno each singled and scored
on Timo Perez's two-run double as the Mets extended their lead to
9-2.

Phillies manager Larry Bowa was unhappy with Duckworth, who
failed to reach the fourth inning for the third time in five
starts.

"When he does get ahead of the hitters, he lets them back in
the count,'' Bowa said. "You've got to be able to put them away.
He's just had a rough year and right now his concentration is
down.''

Wilson added an RBI single in the fourth.

Wigginton's fifth homer of the season came in the sixth off
Rheal Cormier and made the score 11-3.

"I think the ball carries a little bit better up here,''
Wigginton said with a sly smile.

Wigginton even looked smooth in his second start at first base.

"I just have to remember to cover the bag,'' he said.

New York took a 3-0 lead in the first on Burnitz's RBI single
and Wigginton's two-run double. In the second, Cedeno delivered an
RBI single for a 4-0 lead.

Philadelphia pulled to 4-2 in the second on Todd Pratt's RBI
groundout and Duckworth's RBI single.

Game notes
Bowa was ejected in the second inning by plate umpire Lance
Barksdale. It was Bowa's fourth ejection of the season. ... The
Mets also won six straight from April 25-May 1. ... Phillies 1B
Jeremy Giambi left in the third with a strained right hamstring.
... Burrell is hitting .315 (53-for-168) with 16 homers and 47 RBI
against the Mets in his career.