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Willie Harris capped a big ninth-inning rally with a two-run single, as the New York Mets beat the Cardinals, 8-6, hampering St. Louis' chances of reaching the postseason.
The Cardinals, who allowed six runs in the ninth inning, fell two games back of the wild card-leading Braves and five behind NL Central-leading Milwaukee with six games to go. Atlanta and Milwaukee were idle Thursday.
St. Louis has three games at home this weekend against the Cubs before finishing the season with three in Houston.
In a contest that was delayed 2-hours, 19-minutes at the start by rain and holding a 6-2 lead in the ninth, the Cardinals sent Jason Motte to the mound to close out the game. Harris walked, Nick Evans reached first on Rafael Furcal's fielding error and pinch-hitter Jason Pridie walked to load the bases with one out. Pinch-hitter Justin Turner also walked to force in a run.
Marc Rzepczynski (0-3) came in from the bullpen and was greeted by Jose Reyes' broken bat RBI single over the head of second baseman Ryan Theriot. Fernando Salas took over on the mound to face Ruben Tejada, who hit a two-run double to left past a diving Shane Robinson. Angel Pagan was intentionally walked to load the bases again. Harris stepped to the plate again and hit a two-run single to right for an 8-6 Mets lead.
Bobby Parnell pitched a perfect home ninth to snap St. Louis' four-game winning streak, as the Mets avoided a three-game sweep.
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