has hobbled through some pretty good at-bats since returning from the disabled list, and his teammates have noticed his effort.
Johnson had a pair of two-run singles Thursday night and the
beat the listless
New York Mets
13-4 to gain ground on the NL East-leading Phillies.
''That just tells you what kind of gamer he is,''
said. ''He's just a clutch hitter.''
Since returning from a right hamstring strain on Sept. 3, Johnson has at least one hit in each of his six games and has driven
in nine runs despite noticeably struggling on the bases.
''It's been a while for me but this is what it's all about,'' Johnson said about being in a playoff race. ''I'm not pushing
it. Even though I'm feeling better out there I'm just trying to keep the speed and go from first to third at that speed, do
the treatment and try to stay out there.''
each had three hits and two RBIs for the Marlins, who completed their first sweep of the Mets since taking four straight Aug.
30-Sept. 2, 2004, in New York. Uggla hit his 27th homer in the third inning.
Florida has enjoyed its September trips to New York the last couple years. Spoilers in 2007 and '08, the Marlins twice dashed
the Mets' playoff hopes on the last day with victories. This year they came to the Big Apple with postseason aspirations of
The Marlins wrapped up a 5-1 trip and moved within five games of Philadelphia, which lost 8-7 at Washington. They also remained
5 1/2 back of the wild card-leading Rockies with 22 games remaining, including six against the Phillies.
''It's a fun part of the year if you're doing it,'' Marlins manager Fredi Gonzalez said of scoreboard watching.
Johnson delivered in the seventh and eighth as the Marlins missed their season high for runs by one and amassed 16 hits.
The Mets (62-78) fell 16 games under .500 for the first time since finishing 71-91 in 2004.
Playing in front of a Citi Field crowd that was about half the announced attendance of 37,620, the Mets showed why they've
come apart this season.
walked consecutive batters with the bases loaded after an error by shortstop
forgot how many outs there were while running the bases.
had another adventure at second base and New York pitchers didn't have a 1-2-3 inning until the ninth.
The Mets held a 30-minute meeting following batting practice then fell behind quickly. The Marlins led 3-0 by the time the
19-minute, 40-pitch first inning was over.
''Every time I have a meeting we seem to play that way so I guess we won't have anymore meetings,'' manager
hustled for a leadoff double when left fielder
and center fielder Pagan were slow to get to his soft liner in the gap. Parnell (3-8) walked Johnson and Ramirez reached on
Hernandez's error to load the bases. Parnell then walked two batters for a 2-0 lead.
The Mets lead the majors with 19 bases-loaded walks - three by Parnell - two more than Texas. They've also hit two batters
with the bases loaded, according to STATS LLC.
''I haven't been as consistent as I wanted to be,'' said Parnell, who walked five. ''To come out in the first inning and not
throw strikes is aggravating.''
Ross added an RBI single for a 3-0 lead on a fly to shallow center that appeared to be catchable. He also had an RBI double
in the fifth.
, who hit a ground-rule double into the New York bullpen in right-center and scored on Ramirez's single in the fourth, scuffled
in the bottom half, giving up two runs. He was pulled two batters into the fifth, allowing four runs and six hits.
(7-4) pitched two innings.
''One of these days, I'll stick around for seven (innings),'' West said. ''It's all about the Ws. I'm not worried about my
Pagan turned a routine flyout into an inning-ending double play in the seventh. Castillo spun around aimlessly looking for
a ball at his feet after diving for Uggla's grounder in the eighth, aiding a three-run inning.
NOTES: Each team struck out 10 times. ... Mets RHP
(sore shoulder) will make his first start since June 6 on Sunday in a doubleheader opener at Philadelphia. ... Marlins RHP
had his normal bullpen session after leaving Tuesday's start with a sore back muscle. He hopes to make his start Sunday against