Flushing, NY – Ike Davis' first career grand slam might normally be the talk of the town, but nothing can overshadow R.A. Dickey right now.
The 37-year-old knuckleballer pitched his second straight one-hitter, striking out a career-high 13 with two walks, and the New York Mets blanked the Baltimore Orioles, 5-0, to begin a three-game series Monday.
Dickey (11-1) tied a career-high in victories and pitched his third complete game in his last four starts. He extended his streak without giving up an earned run to 42 2/3 frames, last surrendering one in the sixth inning at Pittsburgh on May 22.
"I always hoped for a good knuckleball, and that's what I'm producing right now." said Dickey.
The eye-popping march to the history books didn't stop there. Dickey also became the first National League hurler since the Boston Braves' Jim Tobin in 1944 to allow one hit or fewer in back-to-back complete games. Dickey won his ninth straight decision and hasn't lost since giving up eight runs in Atlanta on April 18.
Davis' grand slam aided Dickey's gem, Jordany Valdespin doubled, tripled and scored twice, while David Wright extended his hitting streak to nine games for the Mets, who snapped a three-game skid.
Jake Arrieta (3-9) was the hard-luck loser, pitching well until hanging an offspeed pitch to Davis in the sixth. He gave up four runs on six hits with four strikeouts and one walk over seven frames. The Orioles pitching staff had not given up a run in 25 innings before Davis' grand slam.
"There is a reason he is 11-1 now. He is throwing the ball well," said Baltimore outfielder Chris Davis.
The Mets first threatened in the second, putting runners on first and third with one out before Arrieta's low sinker induced an inning-ending double play off the bat of Josh Thole.
New York didn't do much else until it's big sixth frame, but the story before Davis' slam was Dickey's dominance. The right-hander didn't give up a hit until Wilson Betemit's two-out single in the fifth, ending that drama with the game still scoreless.
That changed against Arrieta in the sixth, as the Mets got the benefit of a close call and took advantage. Dickey helped himself with a leadoff single and raced to third on Valdespin's one-out double. Wright then fisted a liner to short, which J.J. Hardy fielded and quickly threw to third in an attempt to nab Dickey. Betemit needed a split second to find the bag and Dickey just beat the play to keep the inning going.
Lucas Duda then walked and Davis put the barrel on a first-pitch slider for his first career grand slam.
The Mets tacked on another run in the eighth with Valdespin's one-out triple followed by Wright's single just out of the reach of Hardy.
Dickey tossed his seventh career complete game and fourth career shutout...In his last two starts, only one runner has reached second base...Dickey has surrendered just six hits in his last 25 1/3 frames...Dwight Gooden holds the Mets franchise record by firing 49 straight innings without an earned run...Toronto's Dave Stieb was the last pitcher to throw consecutive one- hitters in 1988.