10/13 00:35 CDT Granderson, Mets beat Dodgers 13-7, take 2-1 lead in NLDS
Granderson, Mets beat Dodgers 13-7, take 2-1 lead in NLDS
NEW YORK (AP) --- With big hits rather than beanballs, the New York Mets wiped
out the Los Angeles Dodgers and took control of their testy Division Series.
Curtis Granderson drove in five runs with two doubles off the wall, Travis
d'Arnaud and Yoenis Cespedes homered, and New York's dangerous bats busted
loose for a 13-7 victory Monday night that gave the Mets a 2-1 advantage in the
best-of-five NL playoff.
Before a bloodthirsty crowd of 44,276 in the first postseason game at Citi
Field, the Mets broke their postseason scoring record as public enemy No. 1
Chase Utley watched from the Los Angeles bench. New York quickly erased an
early three-run deficit and made a winner of a mediocre Matt Harvey in his
"The greatest retaliation is winning," Mets outfielder Michael Cuddyer said.
Back in the postseason for the first time in nine years, New York can reach the
NL Championship Series with another win at home Tuesday night behind rookie
pitcher Steven Matz.
Trying to save the Dodgers' season, ace Clayton Kershaw will start on three
days' rest in Game 4.
"I feel good with him. His stuff's always good," manager Don Mattingly said.
"I'm always pretty confident when he's pitching."
Utley is the subject of scorn in New York after his late takeout slide Saturday
night broke the right leg of Mets shortstop Ruben Tejada at Dodger Stadium.
Amid much speculation the Mets would seek revenge, manager Terry Collins said
before the game Harvey was told not to.
"I think the boos at the introductions were kind of a big statement leading
into the game," Harvey said. "For us it was stay focused, go out and let our
play do all the talking and, you know, all that stuff will be resolved later."
Collins said both teams met with Commissioner Rob Manfred before the game and
he instructed them to play "correctly." Umpires did not issue any warnings
prior to the first pitch.
"I thought our guys responded very, very well," Collins said.
In the end, Utley never got in the game and the Mets saved all their hard hits
for when they were at the plate.
Harvey labored through five innings in his first outing since missing a
mandatory postseason workout and apologizing after he arrived.
"He worked harder tonight to give us five quality innings than I have seen him
work at any time," Collins said.
Los Angeles lefty Brett Anderson, who went back and forth with Mets fans on
Twitter over Utley's suspension Sunday night, took the loss. He was tagged for
six runs and seven hits in three ineffective innings.
Granderson's five RBIs matched a Mets postseason record last accomplished by
Carlos Delgado in Game 4 of the 2006 NLCS at St. Louis, when New York
established its previous postseason high of 12 runs.
Adrian Gonzalez and Howie Kendrick homered late for the Dodgers, who peppered
Harvey with four consecutive singles in the second inning to build a 3-0 lead
with the aid of Granderson's throwing error from right field.
Yasmani Grandal's base hit knocked in two runs and snapped slumps of 0 for 26
and 4 for 88, the latter dating to Aug. 9.
But the Mets responded right away in the bottom half after Dodgers shortstop
--- and longtime New York nemesis --- Jimmy Rollins took his time throwing to
first on Cespedes' infield single.
That got the NL East champs started, and d'Arnaud broke out of his own slump
with an RBI single. Granderson launched a three-run double that banged off the
right-center fence near the 380-foot sign and put the Mets in front for good.
Anderson hung a changeup in the third that d'Arnaud pulled for a two-run homer.
Cespedes took a long, admiring look at his three-run drive in the fourth off
Alex Wood that soared into the second deck in left field and traveled an
estimated 431 feet. The slugger tossed his bat high in the air before beginning
his trot around the bases.
By then, the Mets had a 10-3 lead and fans turned their focus to chanting "We
want Utley!" and "Where is Utley?"
Cespedes and d'Arnaud each finished with three runs, three RBIs and three of
New York's 13 hits. Juan Lagares also scored three times in his first start of
Seven seasons after it opened, Citi Field was trimmed in traditional postseason
bunting for the Mets' first home playoff game since Carlos Beltran took strike
three from Cardinals right-hander Adam Wainwright to end the 2006 NLCS at Shea
Revved-up fans showed up early hungry for payback against Utley, left out of
the lineup despite strong career numbers versus Harvey (6 for 18 with a home
Kendrick, the regular starter, remained at second base, and Mattingly said
Utley was on the bench not for safety but solely "baseball reasons."
Utley was eligible to play after appealing a two-game suspension for his slide,
deemed illegal after a review by Major League Baseball.
As loud boos rang out during pregame introductions, Utley stared stone-faced
straight into the lens while a camera lingered on his face for a few extra
The 7 Line Army and other fans waving orange towels brought cutouts with
Utley's face in the bull's-eye of a target. One sign near the first base dugout
read: "Chase Ugly Is Still Philthy," a nod to his 12-plus years with rival
Philadelphia. And even New York Mayor Bill de Blasio weighed in, calling Utley
"guilty as sin."
Meanwhile, Tejada raised his fist to a rousing ovation when he was introduced
in full uniform alongside teammates. With a walking boot and Mets cane, he
hobbled out to the baseline as fans --- some carrying "WinForRuben" signs with
his face on them --- chanted the shortstop's name.
"Him walking out there I thought meant a lot to all the guys on the club and
the fanbase," Collins said.
Just as Harvey got set to throw first pitch, there was more confusion.
Mattingly and Collins each huddled with umpires during a 5-minute delay because
the replay phone in the Dodgers' dugout was on the fritz.
In the middle of the first inning came an announcement that the line was fully
And perhaps fittingly, Kendrick, the first batter of the game, hit a grounder
to shortstop --- where fan-favorite sub Wilmer Flores fielded it flawlessly on
Dodgers: Kershaw has dropped five consecutive postseason decisions, the longest
skid in Dodgers history. He was outpitched by Jacob deGrom in a 3-1 defeat at
Los Angeles in the series opener. The reigning NL MVP and three-time Cy Young
Award winner is 0-1 with a 2.25 ERA in two playoff starts on short rest the
past two seasons.
Mets: Matz is a hometown favorite after growing up on Long Island about 50
miles from Citi Field. He went 4-0 with a 2.27 ERA in six major league starts
this season but hasn't pitched since Sept. 24 because of a balky back. To
sharpen up, he threw approximately 90 pitches during a simulated game Thursday
in Florida and worked off the main mound at Citi Field on Sunday. "Really
trying to take the emotions out of it," he said Monday. "I have a job to do."