7,531: Mets win on stellar start by Maine, despite virus

Nice job, Maine

John Maine threw six shutout innings while battling the onset of a stomach virus and the bullpen just held back an eighth-inning rally from spilling over Sunday as the New York Mets topped the Florida Marlins 3-2 at Citi Field.

Maine threw six stellar innings, yielding just three hits and two walks while striking out five. He lost his no-hitter in the second when Dan Uggla doubled off the top of the wall in left-center, a shot that would have been a homer in just about any other ballpark. The double made it 7,531 New York Mets games without a no-hitter, but didn’t result in a run.

Center-fielder Angel Pagan, filling in for Carlos Beltran who was sidelined with a stomach virus, got the Mets on the scoreboard in the third by doubling home Wilson Valdez. Pagan wound up leaving the game in the fourth, injuring himself while chasing a deep Hanley Ramirez double.

David Wright helped get Maine out of a jam with a diving catch on a Jorge Cantu liner with runners at the corners in the fifth, popping up to double-up Ramirez at first to end the inning.

Maine took his at-bat in the bottom of the sixth but didn’t pitch the seventh.

The Mets got a couple of insurance runs in the bottom of the seventh with a rally started once again by Gary Sheffield. Sheffield led off with a single, Daniel Murphy sacrificed him into scoring position and Fernando Martinez and Omir Santos followed with back-to-back doubles to make it 3-0.

Eighth-inning man J.J Putz got his first out but walked pinch-hitter Ross Gload hit before giving up back-to-back singles by Chris Coghlan and Emilio Bonifacio to put the Marlins on the board. Ramirez followed with a single off Bobby Parnell to make it 3-2, but Parnell was able to get a strikeout and long fly ball to end the inning.

K-Rod struck out the side (with walk sprinkled in between) for the save.

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