Matz strikes out career-high 9 as Mets beat Indians 6-0
CLEVELAND (AP) Steven Matz struck out a career-high nine and allowed three hits over seven innings, bouncing back from a terrible opening start and leading the New York Mets over the Cleveland Indians 6-0 Sunday.
Given a six-run, second-inning lead, Matz (1-1) retired the side in order three times and allowed two runners in the same inning once. He threw 94 pitches and walked two.
In his opening-start, the 24-year-old left-hander allowed seven runs in 1 2/3 innings against Miami last Monday, his first regular-season loss. He was 4-0 after his callup last June.
Corey Kluber (0-3) gave up six runs and nine hits in six innings, struck out eight and walked one. He is 9-19 since winning the 2014 AL Cy Young Award.
New York scored three runs in the first and three more in the second. The Mets were helped in the second when center fielder Rajai Davis two fly balls in the sun and Kluber made a throwing error.
Michael Conforto and Lucas Duda both drove in two runs. New York managed only 20 runs in its first eight games, but scored 17 in winning twice in the three-game series.
New York began Sunday trailing Washington by five games in the NL East, a larger deficit than the Mets faced at any point last season.
Conforto had RBI doubles in the first and second, and Duda capped the first with a two-run single.
Despite wearing sunglasses, Davis allowed Curtis Granderson's two-out fly to drop about 5 feet from him into the warning track.
Kluber fielded Asdrubal Cabrera's bunt toward the third-base line and threw wildly to first. Cabrera was given an RBI and took second on the error.
Conforto's ground ball hit first base and bounced past Mike Napoli, allowing Cabrera to score. Cespedes lofted a fly ball to medium depth in center that fell several feet from Davis as Conforto scored.
Four New York pitchers combined for 15 strikeouts.
Mets third baseman David Wright, who hasn't driven in a run in 33 at-bats, was given the day off.
Mets: C Travis d'Arnaud (bruised left elbow) was out of the lineup after being hit by a pitch Saturday. It's unlikely he'll play Monday in Philadelphia. Kevin Plawecki started behind the plate and had two hits.
Indians: OF Lonnie Chisenhall (sore left wrist) is expected to return Wednesday. He's scheduled to play the next two days at Double-A Akron. Chisenhall was placed on the 15-day disabled list March 28.
Mets: RHP Noah Syndergaard starts the opener of a three-game series Monday in Philadelphia against RHP Jerad Eickhoff.
Indians: Cleveland is off Monday and opens a three-game series at home with Seattle on Tuesday. RHP Carlos Carrasco faces LHP Wade Miley.