7,529: Santos secures spot with homer, walk-off single

Santos stays

Omir Santos made a successful case to stay on the Mets’ roster Friday night, clinching a 2-1 victory with an 11th inning walk-off single after earlier tying the game with a homer.

With Brian Schneider scheduled to come off the disabled list tomorrow, the Mets rewarded Santos by making him the team’s No. 2 catcher. New York traded Ramon Castro to the Chicago White Sox for right-handed pitcher Lance Broadway, who will have to wait to see his name in lights as he was assigned to Class-AAA Buffalo.

Mets’ starter Mike Pelfrey was stellar, giving 7 2/3 innings while yielding just one earned run on five hits. Pelfrey, who struck out six on the night, lost his no-hitter in the third inning when Jeremy Hermida singled to left, advancing our NoNoHitters.com count to 7,529 New York Mets games without a no-no.

The Marlins got their sole run in the fourth after Chris Coghlan drove a ball over Carlos Beltran’s head for a leadoff triple. Left-fielder Gary Sheffield robbed Dan Uggla of a bloop single with a diving catch, but Coghlan was able to score on the sacrifice. Jorge Cantu followed with a double in the right-center gap, but Pelfrey was able to strand him on-base.

The Mets tied the game at 1 when Santos led off the bottom of the fifth by driving an 0-2 fastball into the left field corner for his third home run of the year. Ramon Martinez followed with a single and Pelfrey was able to bunt him into scoring position, but neither Angle Pagan or Luis Castillo could not get him home.

Bonifacio reached base in the eighth with a two-out swinging bunt over just over the head of shortstop Martinez and Pelfrey issued O’Neill his first walk, prompting Mets’ manager Jerry Manuel to go to call on his bullpen. Bobby Parnell was able to get a ground-ball out to end the inning.

David Wright had a chance to give the Mets a lead with the bases loaded and one out in the eighth, but he struck out swinging on a slider and Tatis followed with a fly-out to right.

Francisco Rodriguez pitched a scoreless ninth inning and J.J. Putz held down the fort for 1 1/3 innings, but it was Pedro Feliciano who got a one-batter “W” by retiring Ronny Paulino on a fly-out.

Sheffield got the game-winning rally started in the bottom of the 11th by driving a slider to left for a leadoff single. After Wright struck out and Tatis came, heffield took off for second on a steal attempt and was able to also take third on an errant throw. Marlins reliever Brian Sanches then nailed Tatis in the back with a fastball, bringing up Santos.

Santos lined the first pitch from Sanches over short for the game-winner and was was mobbed in the infield by a cadre of bouncing teammates.

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