Mets get 15 hits in winning 7-2, assuring Pirates of 18th straight losing season

David Wright and Jose Reyes each had three of the Mets' slump-ending 15 hits, Mike Pelfrey pitched eight innings and New York assured the Pittsburgh Pirates of their record-extending 18th consecutive losing season, winning 7-2 on Friday night.

Chris Carter homered and drove in two runs a night after the Mets were limited to three hits during a 3-2 loss in Houston, causing Mets manager Jerry Manuel to call his offense "pathetic."

Think how Manuel would feel if he managed the Pirates, whose 82nd loss — they've won 40 times — guaranteed them of extending the longest streak of consecutive losing seasons in major American pro sports history. They'd never done it this soon, either; previously, the earliest they had secured such a season was on Aug. 27, 2001.

The Pirates, who fell behind 3-0 in the first and 5-1 in the third, are on pace to lose 109 games, only three off their modern-era record of 112 during a 154-game season in 1952. They've dropped 11 of 12, scoring more than two runs only twice in any of those defeats.

Pelfrey (12-7) gave up Ryan Doumit's solo homer in the second and Andrew McCutchen's RBI single an inning later, but otherwise had few problems with an offense that's performing even worse than that of the Mets. Going into the game, New York had been held to three runs or fewer in 14 of 17 games.

Pelfrey struck out five, walked two and gave up six hits and one earned run in his longest outing since pitching nine innings against San Diego on June 8.

Jeff Karstens (2-10) couldn't make it out of the fourth while becoming the fourth Pirates starter to reach double-digit losses, joining Zach Duke (5-12), Paul Maholm (7-12) and Ross Ohlendorf (1-10). Karstens gave up seven runs and 11 hits in 3 1-3 innings.

The right-hander got off to a bad start by giving up five singles within a span of seven batters to start the game as the Mets took a 3-0 lead. Carter, Ike Davis and Josh Thole drove in runs.

Carter led off the third with his third homer and first since June 13 at Baltimore, and Thole later added his second run-scoring single.

The Mets pushed it to 7-2 in the fourth. Reyes doubled and Angel Pagan and Carlos Beltran singled, with Pagan scoring when left fielder Jose Tabata threw wildly trying to get him at third.

NOTES: The Mets must win once in the final two games for their first road series win in an NL city this season. They did sweep successive three-game interleague series in Cleveland and Baltimore. ... Pittsburgh has lost 24 of 34 since the All-Star break. ... The Pirates have never been more than seven games above .500 during any point of their 18-season losing streak. During that span, the NFL's Pittsburgh Steelers — who play only 1/10th as many games per season — have done that four times. ... The Pirates have lost 60 of 82, the most losses they've had in a comparable span since 1953. ... New York had lost 15 of its previous 21 road games. ... The Mets stole two bases, giving them a league-high 110.