7,484: 2008-style bullpen indigestion returns, but Mets hold on

No more leadoff hits!

Our no-hitter hopes were dashed early and the 2008-style bullpen indigestion returned Wednesday night, but the New York Mets held on for a 9-7 victory over the Cincinnati Reds in a marathon nailbiter.

Mets’ closer Francisco Rodriguez fell behind 2-0 on five straight ninth-inning batters, but K-Rod fought back with a bases-loaded strikeout and a deep flyout for the save.

Carlos Delgado (2-for-5, 4 RBIs) put two Mets’ runs on the scoreboard in the first by blasting a low-and-inside fastball over the right-field fence. But Mets starter Mike Pelfrey let two runners reach base before giving up his first-inning homer, and a fourth Reds run scored on a Jose Reyes error that just as easily could have been charged to Delgado.

Though neither Pelfrey nor Reds starter Edinson Volquez showed much control, both settled down a bit for a few innings.

The Mets loaded the bases with no outs in the fifth inning for Delgado, who drove home Jose Reyes on a ground-out to first that advanced Daniel Murphy and David Wright to second and third. That proved key, as Carlos Beltran threaded a single up the middle to drive them in and put the Mets up 5-4.

New York added four insurance runs in the seventh on a Delgado double and a base-clearing double by Brian Schneider, but Cincinnati was able to inch back within two.

Pelfrey lasted five innings, giving up four runs on five hits and four walks. He got into a jam in the bottom of the fifth but used a fake pickoff move to third to catch Bruce between first and second. Luis Castillo took Pelfrey’s toss and threw home to nail Joey Votto at the plate for a key putout.

Pelfrey lost his no-hitter on very first batter he faced when Jerry Hairston lined a single to right. That marked the Mets’ 7,484th game without a no-no and continued a troubling 2008 trend of adding to our No-hitters killed by first at bat page.

The average number of leadoff no-no-killers during the Mets’ first 46 seasons was 19. Last year we nearly doubled that mark to 40, and Pelfrey was responsible for nine of those. Let’s at least keep our hopes alive for a few innings!

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