Harvey, Mets Shut Down Twins 4-2

Matt Harvey walks off the mound after shutting down the Twins on Saturday. - Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Mets starter Matt Harvey flirted with a no-no for most of the game. Even though he lost it due to a Justin Morneau solo homer in the 7th inning, he was still dominant throughout the contest.

Well, that was frigid.

On a day that was probably marginally better than last night, the Twins remained as cold as the weather in dropping their 5th straight game by a score of 4-2 against the Mets.

Mets starter Matt Harvey was brilliant for the entire game, pitching a no-hitter for 6 2/3 innings against the punchless Twins lineup. He did allow a walk to Ryan Doumit in the 2nd inning so he never really had the specter of a perfect game hanging over him, but his fastball-slider combination was working well in getting ahead of hitters and inducing weak or even no contact. In fact, for a while the hardest hit ball by any Twin was a lineout to 1st base by Eduardo Escobar in the 3rd inning. Everything else was either on the ground or was a lazy fly ball or pop-up.

Scott Diamond started for the Twins in his first appearance in 2013, and he was doing just fine until the 5th inning. Ron Gardenhire said before the game that Diamond would be on a pitch count of about 80 pitches, and it was right about there that Diamond started to fall apart. He had allowed only 2 hits through the first 4 innings, but he was rudely greeted to the 5th by a solo home run from Mets right fielder Marlon Byrd. Things did not get better from there, as Diamond then gave up 5 more hits in succession after Byrd's home run (though the first batter, Ike Davis, was erased by Josh Willingham attempting to stretch a single into a double). Those 5 hits led to two more runs off Diamond, and then Josh Roenicke had a bad luck infield single that bounced off his foot and high into the air, which allowed one more run to score.

Thanks to Matt Harvey's pitching, the Twins offense could do virtually nothing. They did get a couple baserunners on two walks, but were silent in the hit department until Harvey hung a 2-2 slider just a little too high to Justin Morneau, who was able to bounce it off the foul pole in right field for a solo home run and the first Twins hit in the 7th inning. Harvey would later give up a 2-out single to Brian Dozier in the 8th, but that was all the Twins could muster against Harvey.

The Twins did mount a bit of a comeback in the 9th against Mets closer Bobby Parnell. After Aaron Hicks struck out to lead off the inning, Joe Mauer hit a one-hop double to the fence in the right-center field power alley. Josh Willingham then snuck a double in front of a diving Mike Baxter in left field, and the Twins looked like they finally had come to life. However, Morneau then lifted a lazy fly ball to left for the 2nd out, and then Ryan Doumit struck out looking to end the game.

WP: Matt Harvey (3-0)

LP: Scott Diamond (0-1)

S: Bobby Parnell (1)

Player of the Game

Matt Harvey (8 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 6 K)

Studs

Justin Morneau (1 for 4, HR that broke up no-hitter), Josh Willingham (1 for 3, BB, 2B, RBI), Twins bullpen of Josh Roenicke, Casey Fien, & Jared Burton (combined 4 2/3 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K, though Roenicke did allow 1 inherited runner to score)

Duds

Aaron Hicks (0 for 4, 3 K), Scott Diamond (4 1/3 IP, 8 H, 4 R, 0 BB, 1 K)

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