CHICAGO (AP) - Manager Terry Collins wasn't surprised by the New York Mets' performance after they arrived in Chicago early Monday morning following an intense three-game series against the Yankees.
Joe Mather homered and Travis Wood outpitched Johan Santana, leading the Cubs to a 6-1 victory over the sloppy Mets on Monday night.
The Cubs scored four unearned runs in the seventh inning with help from three Mets errors, including three-base miscues by third baseman David Wright and right fielder Lucas Duda.
``We were a little flat,' Mets manager Terry Collins said. ``The fact that they got about probably five or six hours of sleep didn't help.'
Santana (5-4), a two-time Cy Young winner, gave up five hits and two runs over six innings. He struck out six and walked three.
``I knew they had a tough night (but) I was fine,' said Santana, who flew to Chicago ahead of the team. ``Just waiting and hoping to do my job and help them. But it didn't work out. It came down to a couple of pitches that changed the whole ballgame for me.'
Wood (2-3) struck out six and scattered five hits over seven scoreless innings to earn his second straight victory. The 25-year-old lefty has given up just eight runs in 31 2-3 innings this month. Four of those five starts came against former Cy Young winners.
Mather hit a two-run shot over the left-center field wall off Santana after a two-out walk to Geovany Soto.
Mather said Santana was tough to hit.
``He's a good one,' Mather said. ``He had good stuff tonight, too, we just had some really good at_bats.'
The Cubs threatened to add on in the sixth with runners on second and third and one out, but Santana struck out Soto looking, and after walking Mather, got Luis Valbuena to ground out to strand three.
Wright singled in the seventh to extend his hitting streak to 15 games. Ike Davis homered with two outs in the ninth for the Mets.
The Wrigley Field wind played a big role in Chicago's four-run seventh as a pair of popups each turned into three-base errors.
Pinch-hitter Adrian Cardenas led off with a high pop in front of home plate. Catcher Mike Nickeas yielded to Wright, who fumbled the ball toward the backstop. Two batters later, Darwin Barney's bloop to right field was dropped and booted away by a running Lucas Duda.
It got even uglier when Ronny Cedeno misplayed Starlin Castro's grounder with the infield in, allowing Barney to score.
``Weird would be one would be one way to describe it,' Collins said.'I have another description for it that I can't say here ... (But) It's that kind of night. We don't make those mistakes. Unfortunately it came back tonight to haunt us.'
New York mustered six hits and didn't score until Davis' home run off of James Russell with two outs in the ninth.
NOTES: The Mets designated OF Vinny Rottino for assignment and selected the contract of LHP Justin Hampson from Triple-A Buffalo. Hampson, 32, had not pitched in the majors since Sept. 28, 2008, with San Diego. He tossed a scoreless eighth. . Collins said RHP Bobby Parnell will be the team's closer with Frank Francisco (left oblique strain) on the 15-day DL. . OF Jason Bay (concussion) rode a stationary bike on Monday. He is scheduled to begin baseball activities by the weekend according to Collins. . Cubs RHP Ryan Dempster (right lat tightness) threw off of flat ground Monday and it `'went well,' according to Sveum. Dempster is eligible to come off the DL on Sunday, but Sveum said a July 6 return in New York is more likely. . RHP Dillon Gee (5-5, 4.27 ERA) will take the hill for the Mets in the middle game of the series on Tuesday against RHP Randy Wells (1-2, 4.91).
The Associated Press News Service
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