|Carlos Carrasco pitching to Jonah Heim in the second inning. Photo by Jason Schott.|
The Mets beat the Texas Rangers, 4-3, on Sunday afternoon at Citi Field, as they got a great start from Carlos Carrasco, and a couple of home runs from Starling Marte and Eduardo Escobar.
The Mets (49-30) got the game back they lost in the standings, as Atlanta (46-34) fell to 3 1/2 games back in the National League East race as they lost to the Reds, 4-3, in Cincinnati. Incidentally, the Mets start a three-game series in Cincinnati on Monday night.
Mets Manager Buck Showalter earned his 1,600th career win, moving to 22nd in the all-time managerial win list, passing longtime Dodgers Manager Tommy Lasorda. Next up on the list for Showalter to catch is Fred Clarke, who who 1,602 games as a manager. Buck is fourth in wins among active managers.
Carrasco improved to 9-4 on the season, as he had a solid outing, going 5 2/3 innings, allowing one run on six hits and a walk, while notching eight strikeouts.
Starling Marte hit a first-inning home run for the second straight day, and this one was a solo shot (Saturday's was a two-run homer) to give the Mets a 1-0 lead. It was his ninth of the season, to go with 37 RBI.
Texas tied it in the third when Jonah Heim led off the inning with a home run. This was the second straight day he hit a solo shot, and it was his 12th of the season. He was at bat in the second inning when Nathaniel Lowe was picked off first, so if that doesn't happen, and Heim's at-bat continued with the same result, it would have been a two-run homer.
The Rangers nearly added to it when Josh H. Smith drew a two-out walk before Marcus Semien got a single, but Corey Seager grounded oiut to end the inning. Both Semien and Seager, their half-billion dollar off-season signings to helm their middle infield, went 1-for-4 on the day.
The Mets rallied in the fourth, and it started with the hustle of Pete Alonso, who was the designated hitter in this one. When Texas pitcher Jon Gray struck him out, the ball got away from the catcher Heim, so Alonso busted it out of the box, and by the time Heim was set to make the throw to first, Alonso was within striking distance, so it affected his throw, and he threw it to the left of first baseman Lowe, and it went into the outfield, which allowed Alonso to get to second base.
Jeff McNeil was up next, and he laced a double down the right field line to bring in Alonso and make it 2-1 Mets.
Eduardo Escobar was up next, and he hit a blast into the bullpen for a two-run homer to make it 4-1 Mets. The switch-hitting Escobar homered in each game of this series, the first time a Met switch-hitter has hit a long ball in three straight since Carlos Beltran in 2007.
Carrasco held the lead, but he left with two on base and one out in the sixth after he allowed a pair of singles. The Mets played the matchups. and brought in left-hander Joely Rodroiguez to face his old team for the second straight day and face Kole Calhoun, and he struck him out. Rodriguez stayed on fr the seventh, where he worked around a walk to Mitch Garver and struck out two.
Adam Ottavino pitched a perfect eighth, and Edwi Diaz worked around a walk to Lowe and a single to Heim with a pair of strikeouts to earn his 18th save of the season.