NEW YORK -- He was helped by a leaping catch from his left fielder to cut down one rally and some timely hits by his teammates to extend their own innings.
But along with the help, New York Mets starter Dillon Gee provided plenty of room for his teammates to cruise to a 6-1 win over the San Diego Padres on Friday night.
Gee (4-3) struck out a career-high nine while allowing one run in seven innings in one of his best performances of the season. He also helped push the Mets ahead with a double for his first hit of the year, and scored a run.
Lucas Duda homered for the Mets, while Mike Baxter had an RBI double and the big defensive play in left. Ike Davis added a two-run single for the Mets, the second straight game with a hit for the slumping first baseman since manager Terry Collins told him he wouldn't send him to the minors.
Anthony Bass (2-5) took the loss for San Diego, allowing six runs on eight hits in 5 1/3 innings.
Gee scattered four hits and wiggled out of trouble the few times the Padres mounted a threat. He punctuated his night by striking out the side in the seventh, getting Chris Denorfia looking to strand two and top Gee's previous career-high of eight strikeouts.
Tim Byrdak and Ramon Ramirez then finished out the win with a scoreless inning apiece.
New York took a 6-1 lead with a three-run fifth inning against Bass. The Mets scored all their runs with two outs, as Daniel Murphy doubled in a run and Davis followed with a two-run single.
Gee's double over left fielder Jesus Guzman's head with one out in the third helped the Mets take a 3-1 lead. Baxter followed with his own double to score Gee and Kirk Nieuwenhuis then singled in Baxter to put the Mets up by two.
Duda tied the game, 1-1, in the second with a homer to right.
The Padres scored one run off Gee in the first on a sacrifice fly by Guzman, but it would have been more if not for Baxter's sparkling play.
With runners on first and third and one out, Guzman hit a deep drive to left, where Baxter made a leaping catch before crashing into the wall. He recovered quickly, hitting shortstop Ronny Cedeno, who relayed to first to double up Yonder Alonso for a double play. Will Venable came home just before that for a 1-0 lead.
NOTES: Mets right-hander Jack Egbert was called up from Class AAA Buffalo, replacing lefty Robert Carson, who was sent to Class AA Binghamton (N.Y.), in the bullpen. Carson gave up two runs on three hits Thursday night in two innings. Egbert was 2-3 with a 2.08 ERA for Buffalo. ... Shortstop Ruben Tejada (strained right quad) had a base running session that was "just so-so" Friday, manager Terry Collins said. Collins said the session wasn't "a setback, it just wasn't a big step forward." ... Right-hander Jeremy Hefner will get another start in the rotation after struggling Thursday night following a one-hour, eight-minute rain delay. ... Right-hander Chris Young (right shoulder surgery) pitched 6 1/3 innings of three-run ball in a rehab appearance for Class A St. Lucie (Port St. Lucie, Fla.), but Collins said his chance to be a factor for the Mets was "down the road a bit." ... Padres right-hander Huston Street (strained right shoulder), who went on the disabled list early this month, "is feeling much better," said manager Bud Black, who added the pitcher would throw Friday with "more intensity and length." ... Left-hander Eric Stults, who was struck by a batted ball on his left triceps Thursday, should be on track for his next start, Black said.