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Grady Sizemore and Phillies give Mets a gift, stay stuck in last place with 4-1 loss

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NEW YORK, N.Y. - With a chance to climb out of last place, Grady Sizemore and the Phillies did all they could to stay there.

The left fielder dropped an easy pop fly that allowed the tiebreaking runs to score Friday night, and Philadelphia mustered little offence against Jacob deGrom in a 4-1 loss to the New York Mets

"Routine play, had it the whole way, saw it fine, was under it, just missed it," Sizemore said. "It does not get much worse than that. The guys played hard — I just happen to be the guy who let the team down. Really all there is to it."

Eric Campbell stole home on a double steal, and Travis d'Arnaud hit an RBI single to help the Mets stay out of the NL East cellar with their 12th victory in 17 games against the Phillies this year.

Cody Asche had a run-scoring single for Philadelphia, which had won four straight and six of seven. A victory in the series opener would have pushed the last-place Phillies past New York, but Sizemore's two-out error with the bases loaded in the seventh cost them.

"Looked to me like three players surrounded it and he called it," manager Ryne Sandberg said "One of those unfortunate things, and they scored the runs with no hits."

In a matchup of rookie right-handers, deGrom (7-6) yielded four hits and an unearned run over seven crisp innings. He struck out five and walked two in his second start since coming off the disabled list.

David Buchanan went six innings for the Phillies, giving up one run and four hits before he was pulled for a pinch hitter after only 64 pitches. He is winless in his past four starts despite a 3.04 ERA.

"I just wanted to go out there and pound the strike zone, try to get quick outs. This is my third time seeing these guys, so I did not really have anything to surprise them with," Buchanan said. "I just wanted to make sure I pounded the zone early, keep the ball down and on the ground. But overall, it felt good."

New York took a 4-1 lead in the seventh, scoring three unearned runs without a hit.

Matt den Dekker drew a one-out walk from Jake Diekman (3-4), who hit Wilmer Flores with a pitch and walked pinch-hitter Campbell with two outs.

Juan Lagares lofted a high pop to shallow left-centre, and Sizemore was under it when the ball deflected off his glove for an error that allowed two runs to score. Sizemore won Gold Gloves with Cleveland in 2007 and 2008.

"You take every gift you can get right now," Mets manager Terry Collins said.

With runners at the corners, Lagares stole second and Campbell broke for home, beating the return throw from shortstop Jimmy Rollins with a headfirst dive at the plate.

"We had to look at the guy at third there," Sandberg said.

Jeurys Familia worked a scoreless eighth, and Jenrry Mejia struck out three in the ninth for his 20th save in 23 attempts.

Philadelphia tied it in the seventh on Asche's run-scoring single after a throwing error by first baseman Lucas Duda. Carlos Ruiz popped up a bunt for the first out of the inning, and deGrom limited the damage when he started an inning-ending double play with an athletic stab of a sharp comebacker by pinch-hitter Domonic Brown.

"He made a nice play on the double-play ball," Sandberg said.

TRAVEL TROUBLES

Philadelphia, which wrapped up a 7-2 homestand Wednesday with a three-game sweep of first-place Washington, has lost seven of eight on the road.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH

The last time the Mets scored three runs or more in an inning without a hit was against the Chicago Cubs at Shea Stadium on July 25, 1999. Philadelphia had not permitted such an inning since Sept. 6, 1996, against the Cubs at Veterans Stadium.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Phillies: Sandberg said the team might bring up about five or six players from the minors when rosters expand in September. He thinks extra arms would help his bullpen, which had a 1.81 ERA in the previous 21 games since Aug. 5.

UP NEXT

In the middle game of the series Saturday night, Mets RHP Bartolo Colon (12-10, 3.82 ERA) makes his first start since attending his mother's funeral in the Dominican Republic. His opponent on the mound will be journeyman right-hander Jerome Williams, who is 2-0 with a 1.77 ERA in three starts for Philadelphia.

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