How the Mets got back in the NL East picture

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The New York Mets completed a three game sweep of the Miami Marlins last Sunday afternoon, winning 9-1 at Citi Field. The Mets leapfrogged the Marlins for third place in the National League East with the victory, and finished the ten game homestand with an 8-2 record.

Mets rookie starter Jacob deGrom was sensational again, improving his record to 3-5 on the year. After throwing seven shutout innings against the Atlanta Braves in his last start, deGrom again, went seven innings, allowed just one run on five hits, walked two batters and struck out eight. deGrom even collected his first career RBI.

Marlins veteran starter Brad Hand took the loss, dropping to 0-2. Hand lasted just four innings, gave up three runs on six hits, walked one batter and struck out two. New York finishes the first half of the season with a record of 45-50.

After a scoreless inning and a half, Mets first baseman Lucas Duda led off the bottom of the second by lining a double over the head of Marcell Ozuna in center. Centerfielder Juan Lagares then laid down a bunt back to Brad Hand and beat the throw to first, as Duda advanced to third. Left fielder Chris Young flied out to center for the first out, but Duda scored to give the Mets a 1-0 lead. Catcher Anthony Recker flied out to right for out number two, and shortstop Ruben Tejada grounded out to second to end the inning. Neither team scored in the third inning.

Shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria flied out to right to lead off the top of the fourth. Right fielder Giancarlo Stanton struck out swinging for the second out. Third baseman Casey McGehee singled up the middle and first baseman Garret Jones doubled down the line in right. Marcell Ozuna grounded a ball to short. Ruben Tejada fielded the ball and threw to first but not in time to get the speedy Ozuna. McGehee scored to tie the game 1-1. Second baseman Ed Lucas struck out swinging to retire the side.

Juan Lagares to grounded to short to start the bottom of the fourth and appeared to beat the throw. Marlins manager Mike Redmond challenged the call, and upon further review the play was overturned. Lagares was out. Chris Young followed with a walk, and advanced to second on a grounder off the pitcher by Anthony Recker for the second out. Ruben Tejada was intentionally walked. Jacob deGrom then singled up the middle, scoring Young to retake the lead 2-1. It was deGrom’s first career RBI. Right fielder Curtis Granderson hit a ball that sliced into the stands in left field for a ground-rule double, scoring Tejada to make it 3-1 New York. Second baseman Eric Campbell grounded a ball to third, Casey McGehee threw to home to force deGrom out at the plate to end the inning. The Marlins went in order in the top of the fifth.

Third baseman David Wright started the bottom of the fifth with a ground-rule double when the ball bounced into the right field seats. Lucas Duda flied out to deep left, moving Wright to third. Juan Lagares then blasted a ball to center. Marcell Ozuna got turned around on the play and missed the ball as it landed just to the right of his glove. Wright scored easily on the Lagares double to extend the Mets lead to 4-1. Chris Young followed with a walk. Anthony Recker struck out swinging and Ruben Tejada popped out to second to end the inning. The Marlins failed to score in the top of the sixth.

In the bottom of the sixth, Jacob deGrom flied out to lead off. Curtis Granderson followed by lining a single into center. Eric Campbell struck out swinging for the second out. David Wright then grounded a ball off the tarp and into left field. Granderson raced for home, and was tagged out to end the inning. But the second base umpire ran to the plate and emphatically overturned the call, saying Granderson was illegally blocked at the plate, and thus was safe. Replay showed Marlins catcher Jeff Mathis had blocked Curtis Granderson without the ball, which is against the rules. With Granderson’s run counting, the Mets lead increased to 5-1. Lucas Duda struck out swinging to end the inning. Neither team brought home a run in the seventh inning and the Marlins did not score in the top of the eighth.

Outfielder Eric Young Jr. led off the bottom of the eighth by pinch-hitting for reliever Jeurys Familia, who tossed a scoreless eighth for the Mets. Young Jr. lined a single to center, and moved to second on a walk by Curtis Granderson. Eric Campbell also walked to load the bases. Marlins reliever Kevin Gregg was pulled without recording an out and in came veteran Chris Hatcher. David Wright walked to score Young Jr. boosting the Mets lead to 6-1. Lucas Duda lined a single to center, scoring Granderson stretching the lead to 7-1 New York. With the bases still loaded, Juan Lagares popped out to second. The infield fly rule was called but none of the runners moved. Chris Young then hit a ball that deflected off Hatcher’s glove, Hechavarria corralled the ball but could not get the throw off and Young was safe. Campbell scored to widen the Mets lead to 8-1. Anthony Recker grounded a ball past a diving Casey McGehee at third and into left field. Wright scored to make it 9-1 New York. Chris Hatcher was pulled and rookie reliever Sam Dyson entered. Ruben Tejada popped out to second, and Young Jr., in his second at-bat of the inning, grounded out to first to end the inning. The Marlins went 1-2-3 in the top of the ninth to end the game.

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