PHOENIX – Mike Pelfrey had a tough day, to say the least.
The right-hander took a line drive to the elbow in the fifth inning of his New York Mets' 6-4 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks, then fielded question after question about a story that attributed remarks to him that appeared critical of the team's personnel.
The New York Post quoted him as saying anyone who expected the Mets to win it all with the makeup they had this season was being "unrealistic."
It was the only negative quote about the organization in the story. In fact, he added that he thought the Mets were headed in the right direction. But the negative aspect was what reporters wanted to talk to him about afterward.
Pelfrey said he thought he had a positive talk with the reporter involved and the quote was "taken out of context."
"I said something that was misinterpreted," he said. "I didn't think I said a negative thing. That is why I was shocked."
Pelfrey had a pre-game meeting with manager Terry Collins about the matter.
"He did not under any circumstances intend for it to come out negatively," Collins said after the game. "He thought when he left here last night it was a positive story, that we were going in the right direction. Obviously it came out wrong. I believe him. I believe where he is at. It was a tough day for him. He came into the ballpark getting ready to pitch and he gets hammered on things he didn't expect. Then he gets hit by a line drive on one of the days he has some of his best stuff."
A disappointing 6-9, Pelfrey was cruising along with a 4-2 lead when Gerardo Parra lined one off the pitcher's elbow leading off the fifth. Pelfrey wanted to stay in the game but Collins was having none of it.
"Not when I saw the area where he got hit," Collins said. "You don't want to jeopardize this guys' career to see if he can throw a few warmup pitches and see if there is any discomfort. The swelling was immediate, right on the elbow."
X-rays were negative and the injury was diagnosed as a bruise.
Reliever D.J. Carrasco (1-3) came on to hit Willie Bloomquist, then Roberts followed with his 16th home run of the season on the first pitch he saw. The three-run shot put Arizona up 5-4. It was the 33rd time this season the Diamondbacks have come from behind to win.
Daniel Hudson (12-8) allowed four runs, two earned, on eight hits in eight innings as the Diamondbacks won their fifth straight to remain two games ahead of second-place San Francisco in the NL West. Hudson also had a run-scoring single, his 13th RBI of the year.
"He has really, really good stuff," the Mets' David Wright said. "I didn't realize that's how good he was until this start."
J.J. Putz pitched a scoreless ninth for his 29th save in 33 attempts.
Hudson was coming off perhaps the worst start of his young career when he lasted just three innings against Houston, giving up seven runs — four earned — on 11 hits. The 24-year-old right-hander won for only the second time in five starts.
The Mets have lost four in a row and 10 of their 13 to fall three games below .500 for the first time since June 22.
Mike Baxter had a single and RBI triple, and Pelfrey singed in a run with only his third hit in 42 at bats this season.
The Diamondbacks jumped on Pelfrey for two runs in the first. Roberts doubled, then scored on Justin Upton's single. Upton stole second, then took third on the catcher Paulino's errant throw. Miguel Montero's sacrifice fly brought Upton home.
New York quickly tied it with two unearned runs in the second.
Roberts bobbled Jason Bay's bouncer to third for an error. Baxter singled, then the runners advanced to second and third on a passed ball by the catcher Montero. Ruben Tejada's soft double down the right field line scored both runners.
Notes: Bay's second-inning grounder initially was ruled a base hit but the scorer changed it to an error on Roberts an inning later. ... Diamondbacks rookie Paul Goldschmidt struck out four times. ... The Mets will send ex-Diamondback Chris Capuano to the mound Sunday to try to avoid a sweep at the hands of Arizona. The Diamondbacks will counter with Jason Marquis, who is 0-2 and has allowed 15 runs in eight innings in his two starts since coming to Arizona from Washington. ... Arizona is a major league-best 61-0 when leading after eight innings.