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Mets Slam Slumping Padres


Masato Yoshii pitched a six-hitter and Robin Ventura and Mike Piazza each homered and drove in three runs as the New York Mets regained sole possession of first place in the NL East with a 9-1 win over the San Diego Padres on Wednesday night.

Yoshi (8-8) allowed a run in the first inning on Tony Gwynn's RBI double, then retired 16 straight batters until Eric Owens hit a two-out triple in the sixth. He struck out five and walked one.

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Game Summary

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  • After going 139 consecutive games without a complete game one shy of the major league record Mets starters have two in their last four outings. Kenny Rogers pitched New York's first complete game of the season in a 12-5 win over San Francisco on Sunday.

    It was Yoshii's second complete game in 51 career starts. He beat Cincinnati 6-1 on May 21 last season.

    The victory, combined with Atlanta's 4-1 loss at Colorado, broke New York's first-place tie with the Braves. The last time the Mets were alone in first place this late in the season was Sept. 3, 1990.

    Ventura hit a three-run homer in the first inning and Piazza crushed a solo shot in the third off Stan Spencer (0-6). Piazza, who has homered in five of six games, and Ventura share the team lead with 28 homers.

    Piazza also added a two-run single in the fourth. In his last seven starts, Piazza is 15-for-29 (.517) with five home runs and 14 RBIs.

    Ventura's two-out homer followed singles by Rickey Henderson and John Olerud and gave the Mets a 3-0 lead. The homer gave Ventura 100 RBIs, the third time in his 10-year career he's reached that mark.

    New York added a run in the second on Benny Agbayani's leadoff double and an RBI single by Rey Ordonez.

    Piazza upped the lead to 5-1 when he hit a fastball 417 feet into the left-field seats. Piazza hit the ball so hard that left fielder John Vander Wal didn't bother to move.

    Ordonez was 3-for-3 with two walks, and Agbayani had two doubles and scored twice as the Mets pounded out 15 hits.

    Spencer allowed five runs on six hits in three innings. It was his first start since being recalled Tuesday from Triple-A Las Vegas to replace injured pitcher Brian Boehringer.

    Notes

  • Henderson left in the sixth inning with a sprained left ring finger.
  • The Mets (47-20) have the best record in the majors since June 6. They also lead the majors with 39 road victories.
  • San Diego has lost 29 of 39 games against teams that started Wednesday with a least a share of first place.
  • Olerud drew three walks, giving him 100 to set the Mets' single-season record, surpassing the mark of 98 set by Darryl Strawberry and Keith Hernandez.
  • The crowd of 24,519 put the Padres over the 2-million mark in attendance on their 61st date, the earliest in club history.
  • New York's Roger Cedeno missed his third straight game with a strained right hand.
  • Dave Winfield, who started his career with the Padres, presented fellow 3,000-hit club member Tony Gwynn with a commerative bat marking his own milestone before the game.

    ©1999 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed

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