2:20 PM ET, May 17, 2013
Wrigley Field, Chicago, Illinois
CHICAGO -- Having already impressed with his arm, Matt Harvey got to show off his bat.
The 24-year-old right-hander won his fifth straight decision, allowing five hits in 7 1/3 innings and singling in the go-ahead run in the seventh to lead the New York Mets over the Chicago Cubs 3-2 Friday.
"This guy is different. He's not your run-of-the-mill young pitcher," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "This guy has got some savvy. He's got great confidence"
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Daniel Murphy and David Wright homered for the Mets, and reserve right fielder Marlon Byrd preserved the lead by throwing out a runner at the plate in the eighth inning. The Mets won consecutive games for the first time since May 1 and 3.
Harvey (5-0) won his first four starts of the year, then failed to get a decision in his next four outings.
"I think today, the big thing was the curveball," Harvey said after his 19th major league start. "I had that working well and was able to throw that for a strike when I needed to."
Collins said that earlier this year he would have pinch hit for Harvey when the pitcher's spot came up following Ankiel's seventh-inning double. But with the Mets' offense struggling, Collins is thinking more about pitching and defense.
Harvey went up to the plate and singled to break a 2-2 tie.
"That was awesome," Harvey said. "That was huge for me."
Chicago took a 2-1 lead in the first with three hits off Harvey, who had allowed just three first-inning hits this year.
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Starlin Castro singled, Anthony Rizzo doubled and Alfonso Soriano hit an RBI single to shortstop Ruben Tejada, who ranged behind second and bounced a catchable one-hop throw past first baseman Ike Davis for a throwing error as Rizzo came home.
Nate Schierholtz lined to center, starting a streak in which Harvey retired 20 of 21 batters around Castro's one-out single in the third.
"All of the sudden, he got it going," Collins said. "He had such a rough first inning. You worry about it late in the game. Then all the sudden he started cruising. He started getting a feel for it. I tell you, he is a horse, no doubt about it."
Harvey gave up both runs, struck out six and walked none as his ERA rose from 1.45 to 1.55. Scott Rice, Greg Burke and Bobby Parnell combined for one-hit relief, with Parnell pitching a perfect ninth for his fifth save in seven chances.
"After that first inning, it was kind of the Matt Harvey show," Cubs manager Dale Sveum said. "He's obviously the real deal."
Edwin Jackson (1-6), coming off a victory at Washington on May 11, gave up three runs and seven hits in 6 2/3 innings.
Wright's sixth homer of the season, on a 1-2 pitch, put the Mets ahead in the first. Murphy's opposite-field home run to left leading off the fourth tied the score at 2.
Ankiel doubled to right just over Schierholtz's glove with one out in the seventh. Harvey, at that point 2 for 18 at the plate this year, singled to left.
Byrd preserved the lead in the eighth. Darwin Barney singled leading off and was sacrificed to second, and Rice relieved Harvey.
David DeJesus singled sharply to right, and third-base coach David Bell sent Barney home. Byrd threw on the fly to catcher John Buck, and the ball beat Barney by about 15 feet. Barney didn't even bother to slide and slowed down as Buck applied the tag.
"Turned out it wasn't a very close play," Bell said. "It's disappointing, it was the wrong decision. I just watched the replay again, and it wasn't close. As a third-base coach, you want to make the right decision, and that wasn't the right decision."
Cubs manager Dale Sveum would not put a date on the return of RHP Matt Garza to the starting rotation. Garza threw 75 pitches in six innings Thursday for Triple-A Iowa. Garza suffered a training camp lat muscle strain and has not pitched for the Cubs this season. "He did what we asked him to do," Sveum said. ... Davis ended an 0-for-24 slide with a sixth-inning single.
CHICAGO, IL - MAY 17: David Wright #5 of the New York Mets hits a solo home run in the 1st inning against the...(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Regular Season Series
|1st||D Wright homered to left (396 feet).||1||0|
|1st||A Soriano reached on infield single to shortstop, S Castro scored, A Rizzo scored on throwing error by shortstop R Tejada.||1||2|
|4th||D Murphy homered to left (368 feet).||2||2|
|7th||M Harvey singled to left, R Ankiel scored, M Harvey to second on throwing error by left fielder A Soriano.||3||2|
|View complete Play-By-Play|
|Stadium||Wrigley Field, Chicago, IL|
|Attendance||34,890 (85.1% full) - % is based on regular season capacity|
|Weather||49 degrees, cloudy|
|Umpires||Home Plate - Wally Bell, First Base - Manny Gonzalez, Second Base - Jordan Baker, Third Base - Dan Bellino|
* Great command: his strike percentage of 73.6 was a career-best (78 of 106 pitches were strikes). * Mixed up out pitches: 3rd time in his career recording a strikeout with 4 different pitches (fastball 1, change up 1, curveball & slider 2 each) * Kept the ball down: induced a career-high 10 grounders thanks to 35.9 percent of his pitches being down in the zone. That rate was the 2nd-highest of his career.
Matt Harvey improved to 5-0 this season and he broke a 2-2 tie with an RBI single with 2 outs in the 7th inning. He's the 2nd pitcher this season to get a win AND the go-ahead RBI in the 7th inning or later.[+]
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