08/20 21:10 CDT Callaway beats former boss as surging Mets top Indians 9-2
Callaway beats former boss as surging Mets top Indians 9-2
By MIKE FITZPATRICK
AP Baseball Writer
NEW YORK (AP) --- Michael Conforto hit a tiebreaking homer moments after an
embarrassing error by Cleveland Indians left fielder Oscar Mercado, and the
resurgent New York Mets rolled from there to a 9-2 victory Tuesday night.
J.D. Davis also went deep and Steven Matz (8-7) permitted only one earned run
in 6 1/3 innings as the Mets opened a critical homestand against a trio of
playoff contenders with a resounding performance. New York (65-60), which began
the day two games out of a wild-card spot, improved to 25-10 since the All-Star
break and matched a season best at five games over .500.
Pete Alonso hit a two-run double to cap a four-run seventh that broke it open,
and Mets manager Mickey Callaway got the best of former boss Terry Francona in
Cleveland's first trip to Citi Field. Before getting the New York job, Callaway
enjoyed an extremely successful five-year stint as Indians pitching coach under
The two still keep in touch regularly and they had a warm visit at the ballpark
in the early afternoon.
"It's kind of cool," Callaway said before the game. "It'll be fun to be across
the field from him."
A smiling Callaway greeted Carlos Santana and other Indians players and
staffers during batting practice.
All-Star Game MVP Shane Bieber (12-6) gave up four runs --- two earned --- and
four hits in six innings for the Indians, who started the night two games
behind first-place Minnesota in the AL Central and leading the wild-card
Mercado dropped an easy fly in shallow left in the sixth. With two outs,
Conforto sent his 27th homer to right-center on a 1-2 slider from Bieber to
give the Mets a 4-2 lead.
New York reliever Justin Wilson struck out Francisco Lindor and Mercado with
two on to end the seventh. Amed Rosario and Joe Panik each added an RBI single
in the bottom half before Alonso's double gave the rookie 97 RBIs.
Jason Kipnis homered early and hit an RBI single for the Indians, but their
first trip to Queens since 2004 was a flop. Cleveland split a four-game series
at Yankee Stadium last weekend to begin an eight-day stay in New York City.
Indians: RHP Corey Kluber was shut down for two weeks with an abdominal strain,
an injury he sustained during his comeback from a broken arm. The two-time Cy
Young Award winner was pulled from a minor league rehab start for Triple-A
Columbus on Sunday after one scoreless inning because of abdominal tightness.
Francona said at this point it wouldn't be fair to speculate about the
likelihood of Kluber returning in time to impact Cleveland's playoff push. ...
RHP Jefry Rodrguez (strained shoulder) and OF Bradley Zimmer (shoulder,
oblique) were each scheduled to play in a rehab game for Double-A Akron. RHP
Dan Otero (shoulder inflammation) was set to make a rehab appearance for
Columbus. ... LHP Tyler Olson (shingles) was pulled off his rehab assignment
because he wasn't feeling well. ... RHP Carlos Carrasco, diagnosed in June with
a treatable form of leukemia, is scheduled to pitch Thursday in relief for
Akron after making his first appearance Monday. ... OF Jordan Luplow (strained
right hamstring) resumed sprinting in Cleveland and will be re-evaluated in a
week for a return to baseball activities. He has been hitting and throwing.
Mets: Right-handed reliever Robert Gsellman, placed on the injured list last
weekend, has a partially torn lat muscle that puts the rest of his season in
jeopardy. ... Davis returned to the lineup after missing two starts last
weekend while nursing a sore calf. ... OF Brandon Nimmo moved to Triple-A
Syracuse on his rehab assignment and played center field. He went 2 for 3 with
an RBI. Nimmo has been sidelined since May 21 because of a bulging disk in his
neck. ... Veteran infielder Jed Lowrie began a rehab assignment as the
designated hitter for Class A St. Lucie and went 1 for 4 with an RBI. It was
the first minor league rehab game since May 11 for Lowrie, yet to play for the
Mets after signing a $20 million, two-year contract as a free agent last
winter. He has been out all season due to a series of leg injuries.
Indians RHP Adam Plutko (5-3, 4.67 ERA) starts the second game of the series
Wednesday night against RHP Marcus Stroman, who is 7-11 with a 3.21 ERA overall
this season between the Blue Jays and Mets. Plutko won last week at Yankee
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