Jarrod Saltalamacchia homers for 2nd straight game, lifts Marlins past Mets
NEW YORK (AP) — With a handful of boppers in their new-look lineup, these Miami Marlins are a legitimate comeback threat.
Jarrod Saltalamacchia homered leading off the 10th inning, Giancarlo Stanton also went deep and Miami rallied from four runs down to beat the New York Mets 7-6 on Saturday night.
Stanton hit a two-run shot and Miami climbed out of a 5-1 hole with a five-run sixth capped by pinch-hitter Reed Johnson’s two-run double. Stanton’s seventh home run of the season gave him 29 RBI, most in the majors.
"There wasn’t any point we thought we were out of this game," Saltalamacchia said. "With our lineup, there’s no doubt we’re going to put up runs."
Bobby Abreu hit his first major league homer since 2012 and Lucas Duda had a two-run single for the Mets, who had won three straight and five of six. New York was trying to move four games over .500 for the first time since July 14, 2012.
Mike Dunn (2-3) struck out four in two hitless innings and Steve Cishek earned his fifth save, one night after coughing up a ninth-inning lead for his first blown save since June 4, 2013. Cishek had converted a team-record 33 straight chances before Friday.
"These guys have a lot of fight in them. I wasn’t worried that they were going to get down on themselves," Marlins manager Mike Redmond said. "Definitely something to build off of tonight."
Saltalamacchia, who hit a tying homer Friday, sent a 2-2 pitch from Kyle Farnsworth (0-1) off a railing just above the left-center fence. The ball caromed back onto the field and Saltalamacchia initially stopped at second base, but the umpires quickly waved him home without looking at a replay.
"It was supposed to be a fastball away, came over the middle," Farnsworth said. "If I’m going to get beat, I’m going to get beat with my best pitch and he put a good swing on it, went opposite field."
"He’s trying to do one thing — hit the ball out of the park. I’m looking to be aggressive," the reliever added. "Just one of those cases of old-fashioned hardball."
Miami is 2-9 on the road and 3-11 against NL East opponents. But the offense is certainly dangerous; the previously punchless Marlins began the day third in the NL in runs and batting average.
Mets starter Jenrry Mejia, backed by two outstanding plays from shortstop Omar Quintanilla, took a 5-1 lead into the sixth, when the first three Marlins batters swung at the first pitch and hit the ball hard.
"It caught me by surprise, that’s for sure," Mets catcher Travis d’Arnaud said.
Marcell Ozuna doubled, Stanton homered to right-center and Casey McGehee singled as rain began to fall. Two outs later, Adeiny Hechavarria chased Mejia with an RBI single. Johnson went after Carlos Torres’ first pitch and sliced a high fly that landed just fair in the right-field corner to give Miami a 6-5 advantage.
"We saw what we can do in one inning. We have to keep that confidence up tomorrow," Stanton said.
Mejia was charged with six runs and eight hits. New York starters had gone straight 11 games without allowing more than three runs.
Saltalamacchia’s passed ball and Hechavarria’s throwing error from shortstop let the Mets tie it in the bottom half.
Five hitters in New York’s lineup entered batting .375 or better with at least one home run against Marlins starter Kevin Slowey. One of those was the 40-year-old Abreu, who made his second start for the Mets since getting called up Monday from Triple-A Las Vegas.
Abreu, who didn’t play in the majors last season, hit a two-run shot in the first inning to give New York a 3-0 lead. It was his first big league homer since Sept. 28, 2012, with the Los Angeles Dodgers against Colorado.
"Feels good, man. A relief, I’d say, after one year off," Abreu said.
Shoddy defense by the Marlins led to New York’s first run, on David Wright’s sacrifice fly.
Derek Dietrich hit an RBI single in the second, snapping Mejia’s scoreless streak at a career-best 14 2-3 innings.
NOTES: Slowey’s previous outing at Citi Field was a memorable one. He struck out eight over seven shutout innings, setting club records for strikeouts and innings in a relief appearance, to earn the win in Miami’s 20-inning victory last June 8. … New York native Tom Koehler (2-1, 2.13 ERA) faces Mets RHP Dillon Gee (1-1, 3.58 ERA) in the series finale Sunday. … Abreu is 8 for 20 (.400) with four home runs against Slowey. … Mets manager Terry Collins won a replay challenge in the top of the ninth after Christian Yelich was called safe at first on a bunt. The ruling was overturned following a review that lasted 2 minutes, 8 seconds. … Mets 2B Daniel Murphy was ejected by plate umpire Seth Buckminster for protesting a called third strike in the bottom of the 10th.