Mike Cameron, Eric Valent; Photo: Christinne Muschi/Reuters

The Mets offense had a banner day yesterday. Mike Cameron hit two home runs and Eric Valent hit for the cycle in the 10-1 victory for the Mets (box score). With the victory, the Mets "earned" a split with the last place Montreal Expos.

Valent, filling in for Cliff Floyd in left field, went 4-4 with an infield single in the 2nd, a double in the 3rd, a home run in the 5th, and legged out a triple in the 7th inning. It was the first cycle for the Mets since John Olerud had one against the Expos in 1997.

Mike Cameron's home runs were something of legend. He made a bet with an Expos fan before the game. If he hit a home run, the fan would have to sit in the empty outfield seats, if he did not, Cameron would give the fan his hat. In the 2nd inning, Floyd had already won his bet. The fan promised to move in the 3rd, but Floyd didn't let him.

Before Cameron's next at-bat, the fan - who identified himself only by his first name, George - promised to go to the bleachers, but he said that Cameron told him, "Stay here and watch this."

Basically calling his shot, Cameron bashed his second home run of the game, his team-leading 20th of the season, prompting some of his teammates to recall the day he nailed four home runs for the Seattle Mariners two years ago. Fans behind the on-deck circle ordered the heckler to hit the grandstand, but still he stayed.

"He wouldn't even look me in the eye anymore after that," Cameron said with a grin.

Al Leiter started the game and went 6 innings and gave up only one run on three hits and two walks. He lowered his ERA from 2.22 to 2.18 and improved his record to 7-3.

The Mets now head to Atlanta where they face the NL East leading Braves. Currently, they trail the Braves by 6 full games.