7,455: Beltran’s ninth-inning grand slam lifts Mets to 5-4 win

Down to their last out in the ninth Friday night, the New York Mets pulled out a thriller when Carlos Beltran hit a clutch grand slam to lead the Mets to a 5-4 win over the Florida Marlins.

The Mets once again jumped on the scoreboard in the first inning when Beltran sacrificed home Jose Reyes, but that would be the team’s only run until the ninth.

Their two-out, ninth-inning began with singles by Luis Castillo and David Wright. Marlins reliever Kevin Gregg hit Carlos Delgado in the foot with a pitch, and then Beltran blasted the ball over the right field fence.

Defacto Mets closer Luis Ayala let in two runs on four hits in the bottom of the ninth, but rookie outfielder Daniel Murphy made a great play on Jorge Cantu’s line-drive double down the left field line to hold the tying run at third. Ayala then got Wes Helms to ground out to Reyes to get the … um … “save.”

Mets starter Oliver Perez gave up just three hits in six innings of work, yielding two runs – one of them earned. His control was a bit inconsistent as he struck out four but walked five, but he kept the Mets in the game.

Perez lost his no-hitter on the first batter when Hanley Ramirez hit a grounder to deep short that Jose Reyes fielded but held, as he had no chance of throwing out Ramirez. That bumped our NoNoHitters.com count to 7,455 Mets games without a no-hitter and it marked the 35th time this season that a potential Mets no-no was broken up on the first at bat. (See our No-hitters killed by first at bat page for more details on leadoff hits.)

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