Carlos Beltran doubled in the top of the ninth, stole third and scored on a David Wright single early Friday morning to break a 4-4 tie and lead the New York Mets to a victory over the San Francisco Giants at AT&T Park.
Gary Sheffield and Wright followed with a double steal – two of a club record seven stolen bases on the night – and Ramon Castro came through with a 2-RBI single to right to cement the Mets’ 7-4 win.
Mets’ starter John Maine gave up two first-inning runs but settled down for a strong start, lasting 6 2/3 innings and giving up seven hits and four walks while also contributing at the plate with a 2-for-3 night. He lost his no-hitter on the first batter when Emmanuel Burriss led off with an infield single to third, making it 7,516 New York Mets games without a no-hitter.
Wright reached base in all five plate appearances, going 3-for-3 with a pair of walks and stole three bases.
Gary Sheffield went 2-for-4, singling home Alex Cora in the first to give the Mets an early 1-0 lead.
After the Giants tagged Maine for two runs in the bottom of the first, the Mets responded in the third when Wright knocked home Beltran with an infield single. Sheffield, who advanced to third on the play, later scored on a wild pitch to give the Mets a 3-2 lead.
The Mets loaded the bases with no outs in the fourth on a Ramon Castro walk, a Ryan Church single and a bunt single by Maine, and Castro scored when Luis Castillo grounded into a double play.
The Giants tied the game in the bottom of the eighth on a rally that began with a Fred Lewis infield hit off Bobby Parnell and ended with a nice snag by David Wright that kept the Giants from taking the lead.
Mets closer Francisco Rodriguez took the ball in the bottom of the ninth and gave up a leadoff double to Bengie Molina, but that Giants’ hopes would end there. K-Rod froze Randy Winn with an incredible changeup, got Lewis to ground one of those changeups to first and then got Aaron Rowand to pop a fastball to first.
Oddly, the Mets new record of seven steals came on a night in which speedster Jose Reyes was not in the lineup.