Jeff McNeil hit a tie-breaking homer to open the seventh inning, and Edwin Diaz retired Bryce Harper with a runner on in the ninth for the final out as the New York Mets stopped a five-game losing streak with a 3-2 victory Sunday night over the visiting Philadelphia Phillies, who lost ground in the NL East and wild-card races.
McNeil snapped a 2-2 tie when he hit a 2-1 changeup from Kyle Gibson (10-8) over the right-center-field fence. It was McNeil’s seventh homer this season and first since Aug. 1 against the Cincinnati Reds.
McNeil’s go-ahead homer occurred after Aaron Loup (6-0) escaped a bases-loaded jam in the top of the seventh. Loup loaded the bases by walking Harper and escaped by getting J.T. Realmuto on a groundout.
Loup also pitched a scoreless eighth, and Diaz threw a scoreless ninth for his 30th save. Diaz put the tying run on when he plunked Freddy Galvis in the leg, struck out Jean Segura for the second out and ended it when Harper hit a fly ball just in front of the warning track in left field.
The Mets (73-77) salvaged the finale of the three-game series and pushed the Phillies (76-73) two games behind the first-place Atlanta Braves in the NL East and 3 1/2 behind the St. Louis Cardinals for the NL’s second wild card.
New York also won for only the third time in its past 16 one-run games.
Pinch-hitter Dominic Smith preceded McNeil’s homer with a game-tying, two-run double to the right-field corner in the fifth.
Harper accounted for Philadelphia’s two runs. He walked and scored on a double by Realmuto in the first and lifted a sacrifice fly in the fifth to score Freddy Galvis, who had reached on an infield hit.
Harper went 0-for-3 with a pair of walks and saw his 14-game hitting streak stopped.
Gibson allowed three runs on seven hits in 6 2/3 innings. He struck out nine and walked one.
New York left-hander Rich Hill allowed two runs on six hits in 4 2/3 innings. He struck out seven, walked one and was lifted after Harper’s sacrifice fly.
–Field Level Media
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