NEW YORK -- On Friday night, Bartolo Colon hit like it was 2002, returned standing ovations like it was 1999 and pitched like he's pitched for the better part of two decades.
The 43-year-old Colon continued turning back the clock Friday, when he didn't allow a hit until the fifth inning and carried a two-hitter into the eighth inning while collecting two hits and scoring two runs to lead the New York Mets to a 9-4 win over the Philadelphia Phillies at Citi Field.
Colon, who doubled and scored on Wilmer Flores' grand slam in the fourth and singled and scored on Asdrubal Cabrera's two-run homer in the sixth, looked as if he might single-handedly beat the Phillies when he trotted out for the eighth inning with a 9-1 lead.
"After the seventh inning, (pitching coach) Dan (Warthen) said 'You got an inning?'" Mets manager Terry Collins said. "He said 'I got two.'"
In the eighth, though, Colon ended up paying the price for his offensive exploits on an 88-degree night. The Phillies chased Colon by opening the inning with four straight hits, the last two of which were a two-run double by Cesar Hernandez and a run-scoring double to Aaron Altherr.
Colon (12-7) was charged with all four runs on six hits and two walks while striking out six as his ERA rose from 3.36 to 3.44.
"You just saw balls in the middle of the plate," Collins said before a grin crawled to his face. "My guess is Bart's not used to legging all those hits out -- doubles and scoring from third. It might have taken a little starch out of him."
The abrupt ending didn't diminish the enjoyment the crowd of 31,111 derived from watching Colon, who has won a team-high 41 games since signing with the Mets prior to the 2014 season. Colon received a standing ovation as he walked off the field and tapped his glove several times before he waved to the fans.
"It means a lot to me," Colon, speaking through an interpreter, said of the ovation. "It took me back to my Cleveland days (from 1997 through 2002), when it was a sellout every time I went on the mound and you feed off the energy."
The two hits and two runs scored tied career highs for Colon, who also had two hits and two runs scored as a member of the Montreal Expos on Aug. 9, 2002. Only six of Colon's teammates were even in pro ball in 2002.
"It took me back, when I got the second hit today, to when I played with the Expos and I remembered the second hit," Colon said.
Colon, who hit his first major league homer on May 7, is 5-for-47 with three extra-base hits this season. He entered the year 20-for-216 with two extra-base hits in a career that began in 1997.
"He hits the ball hard every time he hits it," Flores said with a grin. "I think he's become a better hitter this year."
The Mets (65-63) won for the fifth time in six games to remain 3 1/2 games behind the St. Louis Cardinals in the race for the National League's second wild card.
The Phillies (59-69) have lost three of four.
The Mets' first two batters, Jose Reyes and Cabrera, homered on consecutive pitches in the first against Phillies left-hander Adam Morgan (1-8).
"It's never a good start to a game when you give up two home runs," Morgan said.
The Phillies produced their first two hits off Colon in the fifth, when Morgan cut the Mets' lead in half with a two-out RBI single.
Colon led off the bottom of the inning with his double and took third on Reyes' double. Two outs later, Neil Walker coaxed a nine-pitch walk against Morgan, who gave up Flores' third career grand slam on the next pitch.
Travis d'Arnaud delivered an RBI double in the sixth three batters before Cabrera hit his second homer. He is the first Mets player to homer from both sides of the plate since Carlos Beltran did it on May 12, 2011.
Morgan (1-8) allowed six runs on eight hits and two walks while striking out eight over five innings.
"If I make better pitches, maybe there's a better outcome," Morgan said.
NOTES: Former Phillies C Carlos Ruiz, who spent his entire 18-year professional career with the team before being traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers on Thursday, left a note to his ex-teammates on the dry erase board in the visiting clubhouse: "I will miss all of you guys. Good luck the rest of the season. Love you all. Chooch!" ... To replace Ruiz, the Phillies recalled C Jorge Alfaro from Double-A Reading. He will likely head back to the minors when C A.J. Ellis, who was acquired in Thursday's trade, reports to the Phillies on Saturday. ... Mets 2B Neil Walker returned from paternity leave following the birth of his daughter. IF T.J. Rivera was sent back to Triple-A Las Vegas. ... Mets RHP Jacob deGrom, who has given up 13 runs over 9 2/3 innings in his last two starts, will likely have his next start skipped.
Top Game Performances
Team Stats Summary