PITTSBURGH — — Michael Conforto hit a two-run homer within the ninth inning to finish an enormous comeback and the New York Mets overcame an embarrassing gaffe by All-Star pitcher Taijuan Walker to beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 7-6 Sunday.
Trailing 6-0 within the first inning, the Mets rallied to salvage a rugged weekend at PNC Park. The NL East leaders misplaced stars Jacob deGrom and Francisco Lindor to accidents, then dropped Saturday night time’s recreation when nearer Edwin Diaz gave up a two-out grand slam within the ninth that capped Pittsburgh’s six-run comeback.
The Mets misplaced 4 of seven to Pittsburgh in a pair of collection surrounding the All-Star break.
Walker, who pitched within the All-Star Sport on Tuesday night time, harm himself with an enormous misplay within the first inning that led to an argument and the ejection of Mets supervisor Luis Rojas.
Kevin Newman hit a dribbler down the third final analysis and the ball began out in foul territory, however then started spinning again towards the road.
Walker swooped in and swatted on the ball, attempting to make contact whereas it was nonetheless in foul floor. However TV replays confirmed the ball was touching the chalk when Walker hit it, and plate umpire Jeremy Riggs accurately referred to as it a good ball.
Walker turned to argue the decision because the ball rolled towards the Pirates dugout, and no Mets reacted to retrieve it. The three Pittsburgh runners took off and stored working, and all got here round to attain.
Walker mentioned he tried to swat the ball into the dugout.
“Clearly, I believed it was foul,” Walker mentioned. “It was so shut. … I believed I flipped it within the dugout. I didn’t even notice it was nonetheless in play. It was simply a type of performs that simply occur. Loopy play.”
Walker was charged with an error on the play, whereas Newman was credited with a single and one RBI.
Rojas instantly ran out to argue the decision and was ejected. He mentioned he needed the umpires to convention to verify the proper name was made, although the play was not reviewable.
“I didn’t get up this morning to get thrown out within the backside of the primary inning,” he mentioned.
Walker mentioned Rojas’ passionate protection helped the staff get again into the sport after a lackluster begin.
“He was fired up for, positive, and I believe that obtained the entire staff fired up, to have our backs,” Walker mentioned.
After strolling pitcher JT Brubaker, Walker was pulled from the sport. He allowed six runs on 4 hit and 4 walks whereas recording only one out.
The Mets started to rally with Smith’s RBI single within the third. Within the fourth, pinch-hitter Travis Blankenhorn hit his first main league homer, a three-run shot to the riverwalk past right-center discipline to make it 6-4.
Jeff McNeil scored on proper fielder Gregory Polanco’s throwing error within the sixth to deliver the Mets to inside a run.
CONFORTO COMING AROUND?
Conforto’s residence run gave him three extra-base hits in three video games for the reason that All-Star break. He had simply two in 19 video games after coming back from a hamstring damage in late June, whereas his slugging share fell to .277. Conforto slugged .515 with 9 residence runs and 12 doubles in 2020.
“He’s one of many guys that we’re ready to catch fireplace, as a result of he might help our offense,” Rojas mentioned.
The Pirates reinstated right-handed aid pitcher Duane Underwood Jr. from the injured checklist and optioned right-handed reliever Nick Mears to Triple-A Indianapolis. Underwood had been out since July 8 with proper facet discomfort. Mears has not appeared within the majors this season.
The Mets positioned deGrom on the 10-day injured checklist with proper forearm tightness. The ace had been scheduled to begin on Sunday, however was scratched. An MRI revealed no structural harm.
Mets: Jerad Eickhoff (0-1, 4.97 ERA) will begin a three-game collection in Cincinnati on Monday. Eickhoff has appeared in three video games this season and made one begin. He final pitched 2 2/3 innings of aid on July 11.
Pirates: Chase De Jong (1-3, 5.59) will begin on Monday because the Pirates begin a six-game highway journey with three video games in opposition to Arizona.