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Setting Aside Distractions, Mets Win Third in a Row

CHRIS HINE The New York Times 27.07.2009 21:46
Pinch-hitter Fernando Tatis took an 0-2 pitch from Franklin Morales over the wall in left-center, for a game winning grand slam.

Pinch-hitter Fernando Tatis took an 0-2 pitch from Franklin Morales over the wall in left-center, for a game winning grand slam.

On a bizarre day when the Mets fired a member of their front office and made accusations against a reporter who covers the team, something almost as bizarre happened on the field; the Mets won a game with a grand slam from pinch-hitter Fernando Tatis.

The Mets defeated the Colorado Rockies, 7-3, on Monday for their third straight victory. With one out and the bases loaded in the eighth inning, Tatis sent an 0-2 changeup from Franklin Morales over the wall in left center. It was the first pinch-hit grand slam for the Mets since Todd Pratt hit one against the Los Angeles Dodgers on May 30, 2000.

“You’re not looking for hitting a grand slam in the game,” Tatis said. “I think if you’re looking to do it, it’s not going to happen. It just happened tonight. It’s great.”

Monday was a return home for the Mets, who had not played at Citi Field since July 12, and they were greeted with off-the-field chaos involving their front office.

The game was the end to a strange day in which the Mets fired Tony Bernazard, their vice president for player development, and General Manager Omar Minaya used a pregame news conference to accuse Adam Rubin, a Daily News reporter who covers the Mets, of lobbying for a job with the club. Rubin first reported about Bernazard’s behavior that led to his firing.

The Mets, however, were able to put those events aside and open their 10-game homestand with a win.

“I think once the game starts and we get to compete against the opposition, I don’t think for a minute those things enter into what we’re trying to accomplish,” Manager Jerry Manuel said. “We really can’t afford to waver in our focus at this time.”


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