THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
DENVER — Carlos Gonzalez was at the centre of an 11-run fifth inning, hitting a homer and single to drive in five of his six RBIs, and the Colorado Rockies overcame Scott Hairston’s cycle in an 18-9 win over the New York Mets on Friday night.
Ramon Hernandez hit his sixth career grand slam — and first for the Rockies this season — and Troy Tulowitzki and Dexter Fowler also homered for Colorado, which scored a season high.
The Mets had some firepower of their own as Hairston became the 10th player in team history and first in the majors this season to hit for the cycle. He drove in four runs but it wasn’t enough on a night when pitching was an afterthought and the ball was flying all over in the Mile High City’s thin air.
The Rockies sent 14 batters to the plate against three Mets pitchers in the fifth in their biggest outburst since scoring a team-record 12 runs in the eighth inning on July 30, 2010, against the Chicago Cubs. They emerged from the inning with a 13-6 lead over the Mets, who matched the most runs allowed in an inning in team history.
Eric Young Jr., pinch-hitting for reliever Esmil Rogers, got the inning started when he reached on pitcher Chris Schwinden’s throwing error to first. He stole second and went to third on catcher Mike Nickeas’ throwing error before Marco Scutaro drew a walk to load the bases.
Jonathan Herrera then singled to drive in the first run of the inning. Gonzalez followed with a three-run shot that landed in the stand of evergreens behind the centre field wall, finishing Schwinden, who was recalled from Triple-A Buffalo prior to the game to take the start in place of injured Mike Pelfrey.
Tulowitzki greeted reliever Manny Acosta (0-1) with an RBI single and Hernandez had an RBI fielder’s choice for the first out of the inning.
Fowler, who had been dropped from No. 2 to No. 8 in the order prior to the game in hopes of bringing his slumping bat to life, connected for the inning’s second three-run shot when he drove Acosta’s 1-1 pitch into the right field seats.
Young, up for the second time in the inning, drew a walk, Scutaro singled and Acosta hit Herrera with a pitch to re-load the bases for Gonzalez, who lashed a two-run single to right.
Gonzalez also drove in a run with a first-inning groundout to bring his RBI total to six, matching a career best.
Miguel Bautista relieved and retired Todd Helton and Michale Cuddyer to finally bring the inning to a close.
The Mets committed six errors in the game, one shy of the team record. It was the ninth time in franchise history they had at least six miscues and first since a 10-6 loss to Philadelphia on Sept. 16, 2007. New York had seven errors against Pittsburgh on Aug. 1, 1996.
Hernandez connected for his slam off reliever Ramon Ramirez in the seventh.
Matt Reynolds (3-0) picked up the win with an inning of work.
Hairston completed his cycle with a two-run double off reliever Josh Roenicke in the sixth inning, helping the Mets pull to 13-9. It was the 11th time that a player has hit for the cycle at Coors Field, and the fifth time by an opposing player.
Hairston singled in the second inning and hit a solo homer in the fourth off starter Drew Pomeranz, who was lifted after the fourth inning because of tightness in his left forearm. Hairston had an RBI triple in the fifth off Rogers.
Jose Reyes was the last Met to hit for the cycle on July 21, 2006, against Cincinnati.
Hairston struck out to end the seventh, and finished with four hits in five at-bats.
Pomeranz allowed two runs in four innings before being removed and the Mets quickly got to Rogers in a four-run fifth inning to go up 6-2.
Hairston, whose leadoff homer in the fourth off Pomeranz evened the score at 2-2, had an RBI triple to start a string of five consecutive hits off by the Mets off Rogers. The string included Zach Lutz’s single for his first major-league hit and Schwinden’s run-scoring single for his first career run batted in.
Tulowitzki, who had five of his 30 homers last season against the Mets, hit his latest off Schwinden to put the Rockies up 2-1. Scutaro tripled to start the inning and scored on a groundout by Gonzalez.
The Mets scored in their half of the first when Kirk Nieuwenhuis broke from third and crossed the plate before David Wright, aboard on a walk, was picked off and tagged out in a rundown to end the inning.
NOTES: Pelfrey was scheduled to see orthopedic specialist Dr. James Andrews on Monday in Birmingham, Ala., to determine whether he should undergo season-ending reconstructive surgery on his right elbow. … Mets OF Andres Torres (strained left calf) was scheduled for a minor-league rehab assignment this weekend with Buffalo and will likely be activated on Monday … The Rockies’ four homers set a season high. … The Mets had season highs in runs and hits (17). … The slugfest lasted 3 hours, 47 minutes.