Published September 27, 2012
| Sports Network
Flushing, NY – David Wright hit a three-run homer and R.A. Dickey tied a career-high with 13 strikeouts, as the New York Mets closed out their season at home, defeating the Pittsburgh Pirates, 6-5.
Wright's blast in the fifth gave the Mets the lead and allowed Dickey (20-6), who gave up three runs in 7 2/3 innings of work, to become the Mets first pitcher since Frank Viola in 1990 to win 20 games.
"To win 20 games is difficult. It's been a real grind," Dickey said. "It's a big exhale."
Ike Davis hit a solo homer and Daniel Murphy and Scott Hairston each contributed an RBI, as New York collected its sixth victory in its last seven games.
Kevin Correia (11-11) exited the game after Wright's homer, tagged for six runs on seven hits over 4 1/3 innings.
"Normally I can pick a positive out of a start, but today there basically wasn't any," Correia said.
Alex Presley made it one-run game with a two-run blast off Jon Rauch in the ninth, but Bobby Parnell retired the final two batters to earn his fifth save of the season.
The Mets trailed early after Dickey gave up back-to-back run scoring hits in the second. With runners on the corners, Rod Barajas hit a ground-rule double to score Garrett Jones and then Jordy Mercer plated another with a slow- rolling ground ball to third to make it 2-0.
New York got a run back on Davis's leadoff homer in bottom half but were denied from tying the game two batters later when Mike Baxter was robbed of a home run by Pirates right fielder Travis Snider.
Barajas added a solo homer in the fourth but Hairston knocked in a run in the home half to keep the deficit at one. An inning later, the Mets took the lead for good.
Andres Torres drew a leadoff walk, and two batters later Ruben Tejada singled to right, before Daniel Murphy smoked a single up the middle to bring Torres home from second. Wright then strolled to the plate and cleared the bases with his 21st home run to give the Mets a 5-3 lead.
Pittsburgh came up just short in its final turn at the plate. Mercer reached on a leadoff walk before Presley delivered a blast to right to make it 6-5. But Parnell got Josh Harrison to ground out and Jose Tabata to fly out to end the game.
Houston's Joe Niekro was the last knuckleballer to reach 20 wins, doing so in 1980 ... Dickey's 222 strikeouts are the most in a single season for the Mets since David Cone struck out 214 in 1992 ... Pirates center fielder Andrew McCutchen left the game in the seventh with discomfort in his left knee ... Pittsburgh has lost eight of its last 10 games and, at 76-80, is in danger of posting its 20th straight non-winning season.