Jones' instant-replay homer leads to Pirates win over Mets
NEW YORK — Things went so well for the Pirates on Friday, even the umpires cooperated.
The Pirates used a pair of three-run innings — including one in which an instant replay review correctly awarded a three-run homer to Garrett Jones — to defeat the New York Mets, 7-3, at Citi Field.
Thursday, MLB scolded umpires who blew a replay review and robbed the Oakland A's of a home run. Friday, the entire crew in the Los Angeles Angels-Houston game was fined and umpire Fieldin Culbreth was suspended for misapplying a rule.
The Pirates were up 3-0 in the fifth inning Friday when Jones batted with two runners on base. He mashed a line drive that caromed off a wall back onto the field, and stopped at third base with a triple.
“I couldn't tell what it ricocheted off of, so I just kept running until I got to third,” Jones said.
Pirates manager Clint Hurdle immediately requested a review. Crew chief Joe West complied.
There probably wasn't nearly as much tension at Citi Field as there was at the commissioner's office, a ways up the road in midtown Manhattan.
A replay showed the ball bounced off a wall behind the outfield fence. It clearly was a home run, but would West get it right or would MLB have to issue another red-faced email in the morning?
“Sometimes, it's tough to see that angle (on replay),” Jones said. “You can only do much with the cameras and angles you've got.”
West emerged from his review and signaled for ... a home run.
“It always feels good when they come on the field and twirl the finger,” Jones said.
It was the second time this season Jones had a triple turn into a homer via replay.
One downer in the game was that catcher Russell Martin was unable to play after his sore neck flared up again. Martin said he doesn't expect to play in the rest of the series against the Mets.
“After a couple of days' rest, I should be OK,” Martin said. “I don't think the (disabled list) will be necessary. I don't think it will be that long.”
Pirates starter Wandy Rodriguez (3-2) had little troubling quieting the Mets. The lefty worked six innings and allowed one run on six hits.
“He pitched out of the stretch a lot,” Hurdle said. “He was in and out of his delivery a little bit, but he was able to get through innings and leave runners on base. He gave us what we needed.”
Reliever Jose Contreras gave up two runs in two-thirds of an inning in the ninth. Hurdle called on Jason Grilli, who got the final out and notched his 14th save.
Mets right-hander Shaun Marcum (0-3) failed to make it through the fifth inning for the third start in a row.
The Pirates took a 3-0 lead in the second. Jones doubled and went to third on Jose Tabata's single. Pedro Alvarez lined an RBI single to score Jones, but Tabata was thrown out at third.
Michael McKenry doubled, sending Alvarez to third, and John McDonald was hit by a pitch to load the bases.
In two games this week, the Pirates had the bases loaded with nobody out but scored only one run each time. Against Marcum — even with one out and the pitcher at the plate — things worked out better.
The Pirates came up with two more runs without getting the ball out of the infield.
Rodriguez lined a 1-2 pitch that caromed off Marcum's foot toward second baseman Justin Turner. Alvarez scored and McDonald was out at second.
Starling Marte tapped the ball toward third and beat David Wright's throw for an RBI single.
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