The New York Mets (58-74) beat the Cincinnati Reds (56-77) 2-0 at Great American Ballpark on Wednesday night.
Rafael Montero (3-9, 5.12 ERA) got the start for the Mets after allowing two runs in 1/3 of an inning out of the bullpen against the Washington Nationals on Aug. 27. He made his best start of the season as he went 8 1/3 shutout innings and gave up three hits and four walks while striking out eight.
Montero was doing even better until he reached the ninth. He retired the first batter he faced before giving up two consecutive hits and an intentional walk.
The right-hander’s 2017 season has been filled with some highs, but mostly lows. This was one of those rare highs as it was not only his best start of the season, but the best of his career. It was the longest he has ever pitched during a start and the second most he has ever struck out.
AJ Ramos came into the ninth to replace Montero. He struck out his two batters faced to convert his 26th save of the season.
The Mets faced Homer Bailey (4-7, 7.51 ERA) who had to leave his last start due to irritation in the his right shoulder.
New York struck twice against Bailey in the first inning to take an early 2-0 lead. Wilmer Flores drove in the first run on a RBI double. Kevin Plawecki immediately followed with a run scoring double of his own.
The offense only mustered up five hits, one walk and the two runs. That was enough however, as Montero did most of the heavy lifting in this contest.