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Lindor leads Mets to home opener win

Francisco Lindor had a statement game as the Mets honored a franchise legend

Arizona Diamondbacks v New York Mets Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images

In a day that was already historic, the Mets set some franchise marks of their own as they topped the Diamondbacks 10-3 in their home opener. Francisco Lindor was the star of the day, homering from both sides of the plate, but Starling Marte had a huge day as well and Chris Bassitt was for the most part fantastic. Even the bullpen was mostly good today! Truly not much more you could ask of a Jackie Robinson-day game when the Mets also unveiled a statue of the greatest player in franchise history.

Things looked a little dicey off the bat, as a double and a walk put two Diamondbacks on in the first with only one out. Chris Bassitt quickly steadied though, inducing a strikeout and a pop up to escape the jam, then not allowing another hit until sixth. That second hit was a solo home run by Daulton Varsho. In total, Bassitt allowed only two hits overs six innings, sandwiching two walks and a hit batter, an outing that actually raised the Mets’ starters ERA to whopping 1.32. Not a bad start to the former A’s Met career.

On the offensive side, the Mets go to work immediately. Singles by Jeff McNeil and Starling Marte put the first two runners on with no outs in the first. Two batters later, Pete Alonso tallied his NL-leading 11th RBI of the season on a sacrifice fly. He did the same thing two innings later, this time driving in Starling Marte to give the Mets a 2-0 lead.

That was the extent of the small ball the Mets would play, and the bombs started flying. First, Robinson Cano launched a solo shot out to left center in the fourth, his first on the year and a hopeful sign of life from the 39-year-old. Then in the fifth Francisco Lindor went deep for a two-run blast, a moon shot into the upper deck in right field two pitches after yanking another bomb just foul down the right field line. Lindor would score another run in the seventh on Eduardo Escobar’s double.

Marte and Lindor weren’t done yet. With two outs and two in the bottom of the eighth, Marte absolutely destroyed a fastball from Caleb Smith, ironically the player that the Marlins traded to Arizona for Marte in 2021. That ball reached the left field seats on a line in about half a second, stretching the Met lead to 9-1. Immediately after, Francisco Lindor went deep again, this time from the right side of the plate. Lindor became the third Met to go deep twice in a home opener (Cleon Jones, Mike Piazza), and this was the first time the Mets have ever had four home runs in a home opener.

We didn’t discuss the bullpen at any point here since it wasn’t really relevant, a breathe of fresh air for a Met team. Chasen Shreve struck out the side in the seventh, and Drew Smith worked around a one-out walk in a scoreless eighth. Up 9 in the ninth, Sean-Reid Foley took the mound and looked bad again, giving up two runs before finally closing things out. That the Mets seemingly prioritized keeping him on the roster (he’s out of options) this offseason remains puzzling.

Let’s not dwell too much that note and damp down the vibes. The Mets made relatively easy work of an inferior opponent. The star they acquired last offseason to build around had a huge day, as did two of the big offseason acquisitions. The back-end of the bullpen got a second day off, setting them up nicely for the rest of the homestand. All-in-all, about as great of a home opener as you could hope for.

Box scores

Win Probability Added

What’s WPA?

Big Mets winner: Chris Bassitt, +23.1% WPA
Big Mets loser: None
Mets pitchers: +26.0% WPA
Mets hitters: +24.0% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Robinson Cano homers in the third, +7.4% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Geraldo Perdomo hit by pitch, -4.6% WPA

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