Bruce homers in his old ballpark, Mets overpower Reds 7-6
CINCINNATI (AP) — Jay Bruce hit a two-run homer in the ballpark where he had his best moment, rounding the bases to a familiar “BRUUUCE” chant, and Adrian Gonzalez connected twice Monday night, powering the New York Mets to a slump-ending 7-6 victory over the Cincinnati Reds.
The Mets hit the road after getting swept during a six-game homestand that included three shutout losses and 11 runs total by New York’s offense. Michael Conforto got it going with a leadoff homer against Homer Bailey (0-5), and Bruce had a two-run shot off his former teammate in the third for a 4-0 lead.
The outfielder made his second return to Great American Ball Park since he was traded in 2016. His 136 career homers at Great American Ball Park rank second to Joey Votto’s 144. Bruce considers his division-clinching walk-off homer at GABP in 2010 as his top moment in the majors.
Gonzalez had a pair of solo shots as the Mets set a season high with four homers.
Left-hander P.J. Conlon lasted 3 2/3 innings in his major league debut, filling in with Jacob deGrom on the disabled list because of a hyperextended elbow. Conlon also had a single off Bailey, who gave up six runs in four innings. The Reds have lost all of Bailey’s eight starts.
Billy Hamilton, Eugenio Suarez and Scooter Gennett hit solo homers for the Reds. Cincinnati fell to 8-27, matching the worst 35-game start in franchise history along with the 1931 and 1934 teams. It’s the worst start in the majors since the Tigers had the same record in 2013.
The Reds honored Mets third baseman Todd Frazier pregame on his return to GABP, where he won the All-Star Home Run Derby in 2015 before being traded. It was his first time back since the trade.
“Me and Jay, for the last couple of months, have talked about it a lot,” Frazier said. “This is where we started.”
Mets: LF Yoenis Cespedes was back in the starting lineup. He left Sunday’s game with tightness in his right thigh. Cespedes had a sacrifice fly and a pair of doubles before leaving for a pinch runner in the ninth.
Reds: Anthony DeSclafani will throw up to 50 pitches in a game on Wednesday at the team’s spring training complex in Arizona, the next step in his comeback from an oblique injury sustained during spring training.
Mets: LHP Jason Vargas (0-2) makes his third start of the season. He’s 1-0 in two career starts against the Reds.
Reds: Luis Castillo (1-4) makes his first career start against the Mets. The Reds are 2-5 in his seven starts this season.