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Lindor's ninth inning heroics lift Mets over Pirates

Francisco Lindor J.D. Martinez New York Mets Francisco Lindor and J.D. Martinez - The Canadian Press

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Francisco Lindor hit a two-run single with two outs in the ninth inning against Aroldis Chapman for his third hit of the game, rallying the New York Mets to a 3-2 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Sunday.

Nick Gonzales had a two-run single in the eighth off Edwin Díaz (3-1) to give Pittsburgh a 2-1 lead, but the Mets rebounded and again reached .500 at 44-44.

“Huge team win,” New York manager Carlos Mendoza said. “We finally scored one. Then, we lost the lead. And then, the at-bats in the ninth, unbelievable.”

Chapman (1-4) walked Francisco Alvarez leading off the ninth and gave up Harrison Bader's single. Chapman threw called third strikes past Mark Vientos and Luis Torrens, threw a wild pitch and walked Jose Iglesias.

Lindor pulled a 1-1 slider into left field to reach for the fourth time on an afternoon that included two singles, a double and a walk.

Chapman, who has moved to closer with David Bednar sidelined since June 23 with a strained left oblique muscle, blew a save for the third time in six chances. Chapman's 40 pitches were his most since 42 for Cincinnati on Sept. 15, 2015.

“He does throw really hard. I think he's throwing harder now than when I faced him a bunch of times before,” Lindor said of Chapman, who topped 100 mph with 11 pitches. “I've faced him probably eight to 10 times and he's been on the winning side most of them. Today, it was my turn.”

Chapman's five career blown saves facing the Mets are his most against any team.

“He got ahead in counts,” Pirates manager Derek Shelton said. “He had Alvarez 0-2 to start the inning and walked him. He had Iglesias 1-2. We were a pitch away from the game being over. Overall command of the fastball was the biggest thing.”

Díaz (3-1) pitched a perfect ninth. He replaced Dedniel Núñez with two on and two outs in the eighth, walked pinch-hitter Joshua Palacios and allowed Gonzales' single on a first-pitch slider for his fifth blown save in 13 chances. Díaz got a save Saturday in his first appearance after a 10-game suspension for using a banned foreign grip.

Brandon Nimmo gave the Mets a 1-0 lead in the eighth with a two-out RBI double off Colin Holderman.

Mets starter Sean Manaea allowed two hits in six innings, striking out striking out six and walking three. Pirates starter Luis Ortiz gave up four hits in six innings.

“It's the beautiful thing about baseball,” Manaea said of the final two innings. “You can be on the edge of your seat the whole time. You can be down in the dumps. Then, it can bring you back up.”


Mets: Acquired LHP Matt Gage from the Los Angeles Dodgers for cash and optioned him to Triple-A Syracuse. RHP Drew Smith (sprained right elbow) was transferred to the 60-day IL.

Pirates: LHP Bailey Falter was placed on the 15-day iIL with left triceps tendonitis. ... LHP Justin Bruihl was designated for assignment to make room for RHP Brent Honeywell Jr., whose contract was selected from Triple-A Indianapolis. ... C Henry Davis (concussion) had his rehab assignment end, was activated from the IL and was optioned to Indianapolis.


RHP Mitch Keller (9-5, 3.48 ERA) will take the mound for the Pirates on Monday, concluding the four-game series opposite Mets RHP Christian Scott (0-2, 4.32).