NEW YORK (AP) - R.A. Dickey became the first knuckleballer to win 20 games in more than three decades, tying his career-high with 13 strikeouts and leading the New York Mets over Pittsburgh Pirates 6-5 Thursday behind David Wright's tiebreaking, three-run homer in the fifth inning.
A 37-year-old knuckleballer who had never won more than 11 games in any previous season, Dickey (20-6) overcame an outstanding, climbing catch by Travis Snider more than 2 feet above the right-field wall that robbed Mike Baxter of a home run.
Dickey allowed three runs in 7 2-3 innings. He leads the NL with 222 strikeouts.
He is the first 20-game winner for the Mets since Frank Viola in 1990 and the first knuckleballer to accomplish the feat since Houston's Joe Niekro in 1980, according to STATS LLC.