NEW YORK (AP) — Wilmer Flores homered twice, Jacob deGrom pitched seven strong innings and the New York Mets beat the Miami Marlins 4-2 on Wednesday.
Curtis Granderson hit a two-run single and Jose Reyes had a pair of doubles for his first hits this season to help the Mets win for the sixth time in seven games. They took two of three from Miami ahead of a four-game showdown with NL East-leading Washington this weekend at Citi Field leading into the All-Star break.
Giancarlo Stanton went deep twice for the second consecutive day to reach 200 homers, but that was all the Marlins mustered in finishing a 3-6 trip. Chris Johnson struck out with the bases loaded to end the first, and Christian Yelich grounded into a double play with runners at the corners in the fifth.
Following a 26-pitch first inning, deGrom (5-4) settled in and won his second straight start after going winless in his previous 10. The right-hander gave up six hits and struck out seven while throwing a season-high 117 pitches in his final scheduled outing before the break.
Addison Reed worked a perfect eighth and All-Star closer Jeurys Familia got three outs for his major league-best 30th save. Pinch-hitter Ichiro Suzuki grounded into a game-ending double play, keeping him at 2,990 hits.
Familia has converted a club-record 46 consecutive regular-season save opportunities since August, though he did blow a four-run lead in the ninth inning of a game this year.
Flores connected twice off left-hander Justin Nicolino (2-5), who fell to 0-5 in his last 10 major league starts. It was Flores’ fourth career multihomer game and second in four days, including a 6-for-6 performance Sunday against the Chicago Cubs.
Stanton, finally on a serious tear at the plate following his long slump, has seven homers and 18 RBIs over his past 18 games. The Mets nemesis has eight home runs in his last 12 games at Citi Field, but he struck out against Familia to start the ninth.
Nicolino allowed four runs and four hits over four innings in his second outing since getting recalled from Triple-A New Orleans last Friday.
Mets skipper Terry Collins, who will manage the National League next Tuesday in San Diego, said New York RHP Noah Syndergaard (9-3, 2.41 ERA) is “in the mix” to start the All-Star Game. “There’s some other guys that are pretty good, too,” Collins said. “We’ve got a nice group to select from.” Syndergaard recently had his right elbow checked because he’s been pitching with a bone spur, and that will factor into the decision on whether he appears in the All-Star Game, Collins said. Syndergaard is scheduled to start Friday night against Washington ace Stephen Strasburg (11-0).
Marlins: 1B Justin Bour was put on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to July 3, with a sprained right ankle. Veteran utilityman Don Kelly was called up from Triple-A New Orleans and played first base, his first major league start since April 12, 2015. The 36-year-old Kelly is married to the older sister of Mets second baseman Neil Walker, who twice threw out Kelly on grounders. … 3B Martin Prado was rested.
Mets: SS Asdrubal Cabrera was scratched from the lineup about 10 minutes before the first pitch. The team announced it was because a family illness kept him up all night. 1B James Loney was inserted, shifting Flores from 1B to 3B and Reyes from 3B to SS, his natural position. Reyes played third and went 0 for 4 when he rejoined the Mets on Tuesday night in his first big league game since serving a 59-day domestic violence suspension. That was his first major league appearance anywhere besides the middle infield.
Marlins: Following an off day, All-Star RHP Jose Fernandez (10-4, 2.69 ERA) starts Friday night at home against Cincinnati RHP Dan Straily (4-5, 4.34). Fernandez is 24-1 with a 1.48 ERA in his career at Marlins Park.
Mets: The series opener Thursday night against Washington features 43-year-old RHP Bartolo Colon (7-4, 2.87 ERA) facing 21-year-old Nationals rookie Lucas Giolito, one of baseball’s top pitching prospects. Giolito is set to make his second major league start after throwing four shutout innings of one-hit ball in a rain-shortened debut against the Mets on June 28.
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