The weight is off Jon Gray's right shoulder now that his wait for a win has finally ended.
The hard-throwing Gray went seven stellar innings to earn that elusive first major league victory, helping the Colorado Rockies beat New York 5-2 on Friday night to snap an 11-game skid to the Mets.
In his 14th career start, Gray (1-1) got the win and the baseball to go with it. The Rockies also gave him another baseball to commemorate his first major league base hit - a single in the fifth.
"I feel on top of the world," said Gray, who struck out eight. "It's a really good feeling, overwhelmed with emotion. It took the tiredness away. It was a lot of fun."
Gray received a loud round of applause as he walked off the field after the seventh when he struck out Curtis Granderson on his career-high 105th pitch - a nasty 89-mph slider.
"The kid is growing up quick, right before our eyes," Rockies manager Walt Weiss said. "The biggest factor is his confidence. He's really confident and knows he belongs now."
Rookie shortstop Trevor Story had two doubles, including one that brought in the go-ahead run in the fifth, on a day when the Rockies found out that veteran shortstop Jose Reyes will be suspended through May 31. The penalty stemmed from an alleged altercation with his wife at a Hawaii resort last October.
It wasn't a distraction for Story.
"I treated it like a normal day," Story said. "Just get my work in and get ready for the game."
Matt Harvey (3-5) struggled in his first start at Coors Field, allowing five runs and a season-high 11 hits in 5 2/3 innings. What's more, his scoreless string against the Rockies was halted at 22 straight innings.
"It's frustrating. From one start to the next, it doesn't feel the same at all," Harvey said. "It wasn't the ballpark or anything like that. It was me."
Gray started the season on the disabled list with an abdominal strain and has steadily found his command. He pitched seven scoreless innings in his last outing at San Francisco but wound up with a no decision.
This time, it was a different story as the Rockies won their 1,000th game in the Mile High City. Gray started out sizzling, striking out the side to open the game, before surrendering a two-run double to Kevin Plawecki in the second.
The 2013 first-round pick of the Rockies allowed four more hits until he was taken out following the seventh.
"Jon was lights out," catcher Tony Wolters said. "I'm so proud of him. He's a joy to catch."
The Rockies finally solved Harvey in the fourth, ending a scoreless string against the righty that dated to Aug. 22, 2012. It was aided by a misread from outfielder Michael Conforto on Gerardo Parra's sinking liner. The ball bounced past the charging Conforto, allowing Nolan Arenado to score from first. Mark Reynolds followed with an RBI single to make it 2-2.
"We just didn't give (Harvey) enough run support tonight," Plawecki said.
Mets: LHP Steven Matz (elbow soreness) is progressing but has a visit with the doctor on Monday. "He's not going to get carried away (throwing) until he sees the doctor," manager Terry Collins explained.
Rockies: INF Daniel Descalso (broken left hand) was reinstated from the disabled list. Descalso entered as a pinch hitter in the eighth and grounded out. ... To make room for Descalso on the roster, the Rockies optioned INF Ben Paulsen to Triple-A Albuquerque.
THIS & THAT
Jake McGee pitched a perfect ninth to earn his 10th save. ... The Rockies are now 15-6 on Friday the 13th, while the Mets fall to 24-27.
COORS FIELD COMEDY
Collins drew some laughs his takes on Coors Field.
- On calling the bullpen to bring in a reliever: "You hope they answer the phone. A lot of times they don't."
- On playing the shift at such a cavernous field: "The fence keeps you from going too far. You have to stay on this side. I'd be in the third row if I could put somebody (there)."
Mets: RHP Logan Verrett (3-0) will fill in for Matz on Saturday. It will be Verrett's first start since April 19 at Philadelphia when he threw six scoreless innings in a win.
Rockies: RHP Eddie Butler (1-1) is 2-5 with a 6.65 ERA in eight starts at Coors Field.