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Mets 5, Marlins 3

The SportsXchange

MIAMI - The New York Mets, silent most of the night against Marlins ace Josh Johnson, erupted for three runs in the ninth inning to take a 5-3 win Saturday night before 26,402 fans at Marlins Park.

Normally reliable Marlins closer Steve Cishek entered the game in the ninth and proceeded to allow four hits, one walk and four runs, three of them earned. The winning hit was delivered by backup catcher Kelly Shoppach, who stroked a two-run single up the middle with two outs.

Johnson allowed three hits, two walks and one run, striking out four in eight innings. He threw 105 pitches before giving way to Cishek, who blew a save attempt for just the third time this season. He has converted 11 saves.

The Marlins snapped a 1-1 tie in the sixth. Jose Reyes started the rally with a one-out single to left and sped to third when Carlos Lee blooped a single to right field.

Reyes scored on an infield single by Mike Stanton. Mets first baseman Ike Davis came in on the soft grounder and looked toward home before he figured out he had no chance to get the speedy Reyes. By the time he flipped to first, Mets pitcher Jeremy Hefner had trouble locating the bag, and Stanton was safe.

The Marlins added an extra run in the eighth, when Reyes singled, stole a base and scored on Lee's run-scoring hit to right.

Johnson had a no-hit shutout working until the fifth. But Mike Baxter hit a liner to left-center and hustled into a double. He advanced to third on a groundout to second by Andres Torres. The Marlins brought the infield in, but Josh Thole got an RBI when his groundout to shortstop forced Reyes to move to his left.

The Marlins scored first, pushing across a run in the third inning. Donovan Solano, who had his 12-game hit streak ended Friday night, started the inning with a line single to center.

The Marlins avoided a likely double play by calling for a hit and run. John Buck grounded out to shortstop, but Solano advanced to second. After Johnson struck out, leadoff batter Bryan Petersen lofted a long fly to deep left-center field. Torres, in center field, made a diving attempt, but he failed to catch the run-scoring double.

After a walk to Justin Ruggiano, the Marlins nearly drove in another run when Reyes lined a hard shot to right field. But Baxter came in to make a shoe-top grab to end the inning.

The Marlins' Lee, not known for his speed or defense, put both of those traits on display early in the game. He ended the top of the fourth inning by catching a hard-hit ball by Lucas Duda. In the bottom of the inning, he advanced to second on a wild pitch that scooted just a few feet in front of Thole, the Mets' catcher.

NOTES: Davis entered Saturday with 25 homers, which is the sixth-best single-season total ever by a Mets first baseman. Fifth on the list is Mo Vaughn, who hit 26 in 2002. ... Davis has three homers and six RBI in his past five games. ... Johnson entered Saturday with a career record of 8-2 against the Mets. ... R.A. Dickey, who beat the Marlins Friday night, is the first Mets pitcher to win at least 17 games in a season since Al Leiter in 1998.
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