Mets 2, Dodgers 1

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LOS ANGELES (AP)—After struggling for much of his first season with the New York Mets, Tom Glavine recently has been throwing like a $35 million pitcher.

Glavine held Los Angeles to two hits in seven innings to outpitch Kevin Brown, and the Mets scored two unearned runs to beat the Dodgers 2-1 Sunday night.

Building on a string of good outings, Glavine (9-11) gave up one run, allowed just an intentional walk and struck out two.

He threw 85 pitches, 51 of them strikes before he developed the early stages of a blister on his left index finger and came out of the game. It still was the first time he completed seven innings in his last nine starts.

Glavine spent his entire 16-year career with Atlanta before signing a three-year, $35 million contract with an option on a fourth year with the Mets. The two-time Cy Young winner won five of his first eight decisions for New York, but then went 1-8 in his next 12 starts.

In his last four starts, he has gone 3-0 and given up just three earned runs in 25 2-3 innings.

“I’ve gone out there in a much better frame of mind. My mechanics have been really good, and I’ve been able to repeat them and make pitches consistently, which is something that was kind of coming and going for me,” Glavine said.

“On the mental side of things, I had gotten into the mode of looking at my numbers, knowing what kind of season I was having and trying to dig myself out of a hole in one start. And you can’t do it,” he added.

He said the slight soreness on his finger was nothing major, and he just wanted to make sure he didn’t jeopardize his next start.

Grant Roberts pitched 1 2-3 innings of relief, and John Franco got the last out for his second save, completing the two-hitter.

Brown (12-7) allowed seven hits in eight innings. Both runs against him—in the fourth inning—were unearned. He struck out three and walked one. Brown threw 103 pitches, 65 for strikes.

Glavine retired his first 14 batters before Jolbert Cabrera got the Dodgers’ first hit—and scored their only run—with two outs in the fifth.

Cabrera lined a drive off the wall in right-center for a double. Cesar Izturis followed with a liner down the right-field line for a triple that scored Cabrera.

New York scratched out the pair of unearned runs in the fourth with some help from Brown, who made a costly throwing error. His nine unearned runs allowed are the most on the Dodgers’ staff.

After Jay Bell singled with one out, Jeff Duncan hit a dribbler down the first-base line. Brown slipped to the grass as he was fielding the ball, and his throw to first sailed wide and down the right-field line.

Bell scored on the error, and Duncan went to third when Shawn Green’s throw to third was some 15 feet up the baseline toward home for another error.

“They got two runs by beating the ball in front of home plate,” Los Angeles manager Jim Tracy said. “Kevin Brown pitched a great game, but we got two hits—and that was it for us offensively.”

The crowd of 45,496 booed, and the fans booed even louder when the next batter, Marco Scutaro, singled to left to score Duncan and continued to second when left fielder Rickey Henderson bobbled the ball for Los Angeles’ third error of the inning.

“You know going in that runs are going to be hard to find,” Mets manager Art Howe said. “Sometimes, you don’t have to hit the ball hard. Brown probably had too good a sinker today.

“We took advantage of our speed and every opportunity they gave us. We forced the issue,” he added.

Glavine and Brown have started against each other five times. Glavine holds a 2-1 edge in the regular season, and Brown is 2-0 against him in thepostseason.


New York’s Mike Piazza, the former Dodgers catcher who was booed every time he came to bat, went 1-for-10 in the weekend series with four strikeouts and a sacrifice fly. … Los Angeles LHP Kazuhisa Ishii, sidelined by a sore left knee, threw in the bullpen and is expected to pitch against batters Wednesday. He said his goal is to be available to pitch by the weekend. … The Dodgers are 11-38 when they score fewer than three runs. … The Mets shuffled their rotation for this week to give LHP Al Leiter’s right hamstring another day’s rest before his next start. Jae Weong Seo and Aaron Heilman will start the first two games of the series in Atlanta, with Leiter pushed back to Thursday. Steve Trachsel and Glavine will start the first two games of the Phillies’ series at Shea Stadium. … New York 2B Joe McEwing, who became afather for the first time Saturday, is expected to rejoin the team Tuesday.

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