SEATTLE-AREA NATIVE CONFORTO HOMERS TWICE FOR METS
What happened: Michael Conforto hit two home runs, including a solo shot in a three-run eighth inning, and the New York Mets beat the Seattle Mariners 7-5 on Friday at Safeco Field.
Conforto, the Mets only All-Star in a disappointing season for what many thought could have been an N.L. East-contending season, is a Redmond, Washington, native.
Conforto hit a solo shot off Mariners starter Ariel Miranda in the third, then another in the eighth against Marc Rzepczynski, the first homer the lefty reliever has given up to a left-handed batter this season.
The Mets also got a home run from Jay Bruce in the first inning, his 27th of the season.
Miranda gave up three runs – four earned – one five hits and a walk with 10 strikeouts over six innings.
Mike Zunino went 2 for 3 with a solo home run, his 16th of the season.
- Mets jumped on top in the first on a two-run homer by Jay Bruce, his 27th. They added two more in the third, as local product Michael Conforto, the Mets sole All-Star this season, popped his 20th.
- Later in the frame, Asdrubal Cabrera made it 4-0, scoring on a sac fly by Wilmer Flores. Cabrera ended up at third by singling then advancing on a wild pitch and throwing error by Mike Zunino.
- Zunino made up for the bad throw in the bottom half, smacking his 16th homer off a 95 mph fastball from Miguel Montero.
- The M’s big rally came in the fifth. Mitch Haniger doubled, then the M’s loaded ’em up on Jarrod Dyson’s single and a walk to Zunino. With Jean Segura batting, Montero uncorked a wild pitch and Haniger scampered home, with the other runners moving up a base.
- Segura walked. After Ben Gamel struck out, Robinson Cano plated Dyson with a sac fly. Nelson Cruz then drew a free pass to load the bases yet again. Kyle Seager bounced a ground ball through the left side to drive in Zunino and Segura to give the M’s a 5-4 lead.
- Top of eight, Conforto made his homecoming that much sweeter with his second homer of the game, off Marc Rzepczynski, the lefty reliever’s first homer allowed to a lefty this season. The Mets got two more off David Phelps later in the inning.
This was a game the Mariners could have, and probably should have, won. After getting down early they rallied and had several chances to extend the lead. Unfortunately, one of their most reliable relievers was victimized for a rare left-on-left homer and then the flood gates opened a little.
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Players of the Game
Hero: Mike Zunino. Homer, only M’s hitter with more than one knock.
Goat: Ben Gamel. 1 for 5, three Ks, five LOBs in the two-spot.
New York Mets (48-53) at Seattle Mariners (51-53) at 1:10 p.m. at Safeco Field. LHP James Paxton (10-3, 2.84) hosts Seth Lugo (5-2, 4.10).
What others are saying (and writing)
When a local guy comes back to Safeco, hits two home runs and helps ensure a 7-5 loss for the home team, it makes you think of what might have been. … A former pitcher is now a current one. Jerry Dipoto traded reliever Steve Cishek to Tampa Bay and in return received Erasmo Ramirez back to bolster the starting staff. That began a cluster of roster moves, including Andrew Moore being sent back to Tacoma. It also opened opportunities for other relievers.
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