Delgado had played 1,711 regular-season games for Toronto, Florida and the Mets in his 14-year career before stepping out on the field in the postseason. Thus far he's batting .455 (10-for-22) with three homers, six RBIs and a pair of doubles in his first five playoff games.
"He has been huge all year for us," said Mets manager Willie Randolph. "I mean, he's in a nice groove right now. When he's hitting the ball solid the other way like that and through the middle, he's just an unbelievable hitter. He takes this opportunity, his first postseason, to show everyone what a great player, a great hitter he is. He got us started, but we couldn't hold on to it. He got us going with some big home runs."
Multihomer games in the NLCS
The first was a three-run shot, coming in the bottom of the first inning, a 440-foot drive that came to rest well beyond the fence to the left of center. His second was a solo shot into the left-field bleachers with one out in the fifth. And it should be noted that the four RBIs tied another Mets NLCS single-game mark set by Staub in that same game 33 years ago.The homers both came off fastballs out over the plate, Delgado said. Tough pitches? "I hit them," he said. "That's very relative. [Carpenter] probably didn't have his best stuff. I've seen his breaking ball a lot sharper. But he's a tough competitor. He wasn't going to give in." Delgado, of course, is a left-handed hitter, and he said when he's using the opposite field to that kind of good use, he is at his best. "I'm just trying to hit the ball hard," said the 34-year-old native of Puerto Rico. "I'm more successful when I let the ball travel. Sometimes I get in trouble when I try to hook too much, try to pull too much. Now I'm just trying to let the ball travel and let it go." Asked when he developed that approach, Delgado said: "When I was 16. When I signed to play professional baseball. That's when I started doing it. Sometimes it just doesn't work." On Friday night it worked, even if it was wasted in a losing cause.
Barry M. Bloom is a national reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.