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Mets rally in ninth inning, survive Phillies’ comeback bid to split London Series

LONDON — The Mets gave the Brits exactly what they were hoping for Sunday at London Stadium: An exciting game that came down to a thrilling ninth-inning finish.

After going down 4-3 in the seventh, the Mets rallied for three runs off left-handed closer Jose Alvarado (1-3) in the top of the ninth to defeat the Philadelphia Phillies, 6-5, splitting the two-game London Series.

Not to be outdone, the Phillies (45-20) rallied in the bottom of the ninth. With the bases loaded and Nick Castellanos at the plate, Drew Smith (two saves) jammed him with an 0-2 curveball. Castellanos broke his bat on and bounced the ball to catcher Luis Torrens, who quickly tagged home plate and threw to first base for a game-saving, 2-3 double play.

Right-hander Dedniel Nuñez had given up a tie-breaking homer to sparsely-used Phillies outfielder David Dahl in the seventh. It was only Dahl’s third game in the Major Leagues this season. The Mets may have pushed Nuñez a little too far by having him get up for a third time, but the Mets needed to make up innings after pulling starter Jose Quintana in the fourth.

Right-hander Reed Garrett (6-2) had already thrown 1 1/3 innings when he went back out for the save opportunity in the ninth. He put two on and got one out before the Mets (28-36) went to Smith. The right-hander promptly gave up a single to Bryce Harper to load the bases, then hit Alec Bohm to bring in a run.

Former Mets right-hander Taijuan Walker was nearly unhittable through the first five innings. Quintana, the left-hander the Mets signed in December 2022 to replace Walker in the rotation, couldn’t even get out of the fourth inning.

For the second straight day, the Mets were forced to pull their starting pitcher in the fourth. Quintana exited with two outs in the fourth and the Mets trailing 3-0. Once again, the bullpen was forced to cover a lot of ground. With only two games in five days, the Mets and Phillies could be aggressive with their relief arms, but the New York ‘pen hasn’t exactly been solid as of late.

The Mets came back in the sixth with a three-run inning, chasing Walker from the game with two outs. Left-hander Gregory Soto entered to face Brandon Nimmo, and the outfielder flared one off the bat to the opposite field, with the ball dropping down the left-field line. Torrens scored from second to put the Mets on the board.

J.D. Martinez lined the first pitch he saw to center field, scoring two to tie the game at 3-3.

A packed crowd rose to their feet.

Harrison Bader then drew a pinch-hit walk, but Taylor struck out against left-hander Matt Strahm to end the inning.

The Mets put two on in the in the sixth before Strahm retired the next two. Right-hander Jeff Hoffman replaced Strahm, facing Pete Alonso.

Alonso struck out to strand the runners.

Quintana allowed three earned runs on six hits, walked two and struck out one over only 3 2/3 innings. His ERA is 5.29 on the season.

Walker was charged with two earned runs on two hits. He walked one and struck out six in 5 2/3 innings.

A total of 108,956 people attended the two MLB World Tour games this weekend. It was a successful weekend for all involved.


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