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Mets 8, Marlins 3—Don’t run on The Squirrel!

Mets take series from Wild Card hopeful Marlins behind McNeil’s glove and Vientos’ bat.

MLB: New York Mets at Miami Marlins Jim Rassol-USA TODAY Sports

The Mets made the Marlins young ace Eury Perez work hard in the early innings—Perez stranded two in the first inning before surrendering a home run to Mark Vientos in the top of the second to give the Mets an early 1-0 lead.

The Mets extended that lead in the third thanks in part to some poor Miami defense. After Brandon Nimmo worked a leadoff walk, Ronny Mauricio ripped a single to right. An ill-advised Jesus Sanchez throw to third went awry, scoring Nimmo and allowing Mauricio to advance all the way to third. He would score from there on a Pete Alonso sacrifice fly.

Staked to a 3-0 lead, Kodai Senga was not at his Cy Young Candidate best, but was able to bend but not break. The Marlins got on the board in the fourth when Bryan de la Cruz led off with a single, advanced to third on a wild pitch and a ground out and scored on a sacrifice fly.

The Marlins had a golden chance to get closer in the fifth, but where denied thanks largely to Jeff McNeil’s defense out in right field. After Jorge Soler led off the inning with a sharp single, Jazz Chisholm followed by ripping a drive to right field. McNeil extended to cut the ball off before it reached the wall and gunned down Chisholm—with a nice relay from Mauricio—trying for a double. Fortunately for the Mets, the ball found McNeil again on the next play, as Xavier Edwards lofted a fly ball to medium depth in right. The Squirrel gunned down Soler at the plate for his second outfield assist of the inning to keep the score 3-1.

Vientos homered for a second time in the game in his home city to extend the lead back to three. Josh Bell would answer in the bottom of the sixth to make the score 4-2, but that was as close as the Marlins would get. Senga would close out the sixth, and the Mets would plate two more in the top of the seventh to extend their lead to 6-2.

The Marlins would put some pressure on the Mets’ shaky bullpen in the eighth, but Brett Baty and Brandon Nimmo would add late solo home runs to keep the Mets comfortably in front as they claimed a series victory and tried to play spoiler against the Wild Card hopeful Marlins.

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Win Probablilty Added

What’s WPA?

Big Mets winner: Ronny Mauricio, +18.6% WPA
Big Mets loser: Rafael Ortega, -6.0% WPA
Mets pitchers: - +28.7% WPA
Mets hitters: +21.3% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Ronny Mauricio single in top of second (and error on Jesus Sanchez scoring Nimmo and advancing Mauricio to third, +14.0% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Josh Bell solo home run in the bottom of the sixth, -9.6% WPA