NEW YORK (AP)—The Mets traded for Richard Hidalgo because they wanted more punch in the middle of the lineup.
That’s exactly what he gave them.
“It was a great feeling,” Hidalgo said. “I’m so happy to be here.”
Steve Trachsel pitched six solid innings for the Mets, who got a two-run double from Eric Valent in their fourth consecutive victory. They moved back to .500 for the first time in two weeks by winning for the sixth time in seven games.
Acquired from Houston on Thursday for pitchers David Weathers and Jeremy Griffiths, Hidalgo went 2-for-4 and scored twice. He hit a two-run shot off Jeremy Bonderman (5-6) in the fourth, his first home run since April 14 with the Astros, against St. Louis.
“This guy’s got pop. We thought it was kind of a coup, to be honest with you, to be able to get him over here at this point,” Mets manager Art Howe said. “Another threat. You just can’t pitch around people now. You make a mistake to Richard, you’re going to pay.”
Trachsel (7-5) allowed one run and four hits, improving to 6-2 with a 1.75 ERA in 10 starts at home. He walked a season-high five, one intentional.
“We came in here on a high, we leave here down. Our job now is to regroup,” Detroit manager Alan Trammell said. “We really got shut down today. You have to give the Mets’ pitching credit.”
Jose Reyes went 0-for-3 in his second game of the season since straining his right hamstring in spring training. But he walked and scored on Hidalgo’s homer.
“Having Reyes back is just a tremendous lift for us,” Cliff Floyd said.
Piazza was rested Saturday night, so Sunday marked the first time all season the Mets played with their entire lineup.
Reyes drew a leadoff walk in the fourth before Bonderman struck out Piazza and Floyd. But Hidalgo drove an 0-1 pitch into the Detroit bullpen for New York’s first hit of the game and his first hit in nine at-bats with the Mets.
“The last two games I was feeling like I was in the middle of nowhere. I was feeling kind of lost,” Hidalgo said. “But I feel relaxed right now.”
“That fourth inning just killed me,” Bonderman said. “I didn’t give up a hard-hit ball until that pitch.”
Hidalgo reached on an infield single in the sixth and scored from first on Wigginton’s bloop double with two outs.
Piazza homered to center off Al Levine leading off the eighth, his 15th of the year and major league-record 356th as a catcher.
“We’re getting good pitching and timely hitting. There’s no secret formula to it,” Piazza said.
Trachsel got out of a third-inning jam when he struck out Craig Monroe on a 3-2 pitch with the bases loaded.
“I was able to be a little bit more aggressive with my fastball after that. It was the one pitch I knew I could throw for a strike,” Trachsel said. “It was a struggle from the start, just grinded it out.”
Bonderman gave up four runs and three hits in five innings, striking out seven.
Tigers second baseman Omar Infante, who committed a key error Saturday night, made a remarkable play in the third, tumbling on the outfield grass tofield Valent’s grounder and throwing him out from the seat of his pants.
Guillen batted cleanup for the first time this season and went 2-for-4. … Tigers OF Rondell White got the day off. … Detroit optioned reliever Steve Colyer to Triple-A Toledo and recalled RHP Franklyn German, who pitched a scoreless inning. The Tigers also agreed to terms on a contract with third-round draft pick Jeff Frazier, an outfielder out of Rutgers. … Mets SS Kaz Matsui went 0-for-4 and made his 15th error, drawing some boos from thecrowd. … Reyes is 1-for-8 with a walk and two runs scored in two games.