Mets 5, Padres 1

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SAN DIEGO (AP)—Ty Wigginton settled down and sent the New York Mets in the right direction.

Wigginton, born and raised in San Diego, had pressed in the first two games of the series against the Padres in front of family and friends, going 1-for-7.

But Wigginton hit a three-run homer in the first inning on Thursday to propel the Mets to a 5-1 win over San Diego.

Roger Cedeno added a two-run shot, also with two outs, in the second inning to give the Mets a 5-0 lead as they avoided being swept in the three-game series.

“It was definitely nice to come back home and do well,” said Wigginton. “I would have liked to have had a better series and have us do better, but I’ll take it.”

Wigginton hit his ninth homer, connecting against Oliver Perez (4-7) as New York won for the seventh time in nine games despite being outhit 7-4.

Marco Scutaro led off the second with a double. Two outs later, Cedeno hit an 0-2 hanging slider into the left-field stands.

“The two two-out homers, that was about all we got,” Mets manager Art Howe said. “We made it stand up.”

New York also received a solid outing from Jae Seo (7-8), who won two consecutive starts for the first time since mid-June. Seo allowed one run and six hits in six innings.

“The hitters were able to score some early runs and it made me comfortable to go out there and just pitch,” the Korean-born Seo said through a translator.

“If anything, it gives me a bit of confidence, especially when I get behind in the count and I get more aggressive.”

Seo allowed a one-out double to Mark Kotsay in the first, a two-out triple to Sean Burroughs in the second and Burroughs’ two-out double in the sixth. But Seo escaped trouble in each instance.

“Jae just pitched lights out today,” Wigginton said. “We gave him a lead and he pitched his game.”

Before winning in his last start, Seo had gone 0-6 in nine starts since June 17.

Perez settled down after the first two innings. The left-hander allowed five runs and four hits in seven innings. He retired his final 14 batters, striking out four straight and five of six during one stretch. Perez finished with nine strikeouts.

Perez, who averages more than three walks per game in his 19 starts, walked the first two batters of the game before allowing Wigginton’s two-out homer.

“The first and second inning I lost my control and they took advantage of that,” Perez said through a translator.

“The first two innings did us in, did (Perez) in,” Padres manager Bruce Bochy said. “He had two outs in the first two innings and didn’t get that third out. He made a couple of mistakes ahead in the count.”

San Diego scored its only run in the fourth after a one-out walk to Ryan Klesko and a ground-rule double by Rondell White. Burroughs then hit an RBIgrounder went under the glove of Scutaro at second base for an error.

Notes

After Tony Clark’s single in the third inning, San Diego pitchers retired 20 of the final 21 New York batters. … The Padres, who won the first two games of the three-game series, last swept a three-game series at home against Montreal on May 13-15, 2002. … Perez lost his third straight start, allowing at least four runs in each game. … With San Diego set to move into its downtown ballpark next season, the Mets finished with a 92-102 record atQualcomm Stadium.

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