How long has it been since the Mets last faced the Rays? Just under three years. But what has that meant in baseball time?
The Mets last beat Tampa Bay on June 19, 2009, 5-3. Fernando Nieve got the win. Sean Green pitched the eighth, Francisco Rodriguez earned the save. Brian Schneider hit a three-run homer, Ryan Church had an RBI- it was probably the high point of the team’s Lastings Milledge haul. Gary Sheffield reached base twice, then got replaced for defense by Jeremy Reed.
On June 20, James Shields outpitched Johan Santana. The Mets received doubles from Church, Alex Cora and Omir Santos.
On June 21, Mike Pelfrey had an RBI single, Schneider homered, Sheffield had an RBI double. Ken Takahashi, Brian Stokes and Jon Switzer both pitched scoreless frames in relief. Fernando Tatis struck out as a pinch hitter. So did Nick Evans. Wilson Valdez started at shortstop.
But Bobby Parnell blew the save. Because some things never change.