Stroman, Lindor lead Mets past slumping Padres
NEW YORK (AP) — Marcus Stroman pitched one-run ball into the seventh inning, Francisco Lindor hit an early two-run homer and the New York Mets beat the slumping San Diego Padres 4-1 Saturday.
Stroman (6-4) pitched 6 1/3 innings, allowing six hits and walking one while tying a season high with eight strikeouts.
He induced two double plays to sure-handed second baseman Luis Guillorme and got eight outs via ground ball. The sinkerballer entered with an NL-best 53.9% grounder rate.
“He was nasty,” Mets manager Luis Rojas said. “Everything was moving the right way. He had good command of his stuff.”
Stroman lasted at least six innings for a career-high seventh straight start and beat San Diego for the second time in seven days. He also allowed a run in 6 2/3 innings Sunday in San Diego, and his teammates gave him a wrestling championship belt awarded to each night's player of the game.
“Just trying to celebrate all victories, all blessings,” Stroman said. “So, I was lucky enough to win pitcher of the game today and this is what we get to rock for the day.”
Stroman took a shutout into the seventh until Fernando Tatis Jr. hit his 18th homer to open the inning.
Tatis moved into a tie with Atlanta outfielder Ronald Acuña Jr. for the NL homer lead. He crushed an 0-1 slider over the left field fence, admired his latest homer and did his customary, celebratory stutter step before touching third.
Two batters after Tatis’ drive, Stroman walked Wil Myers and exited to a nice ovation.
Aaron Loup finished the seventh and Seth Lugo struck out Manny Machado with a runner on to end a hitless eighth.
Edwin Díaz converted his 12th save in 13 chances, with Lindor converting the final out at short with an off-balanced throw on a grounder that was deflected by Díaz.
New York allowed three runs or fewer for the 11th straight home game and for the 17th time in 22 home games. It is the Mets’ longest streak since a team-record 14-game streak from May 2-31, 1968, in Hall of Famer Tom Seaver’s second season.
“We knew what we were capable of from the very start,” Stroman said of the Mets’ starters. “So, it’s just of going out there. I think between staff, between players, we have a great combination of guys. There’s so much flow of information happening. We’re sharing ideas, we’re sharing how each other pitches and prepares.”
The Mets clinched their 11th series victory this year and moved eight games over .500 for the first time since the end of 2019. New York also won for the 11th time in 15 games and homered for the 10th time in 12 games.
San Diego matched a season high with its fourth straight loss. The Padres also lost for the 10th time in 13 games.
“As a group and a whole, we’re scuffling a bit,” San Diego manager Jayce Tingler said. “These are the challenges. These are the challenges in the season. Nothing’s going to get easy."
San Diego went hitless in both at-bats with runners in scoring position. The Padres tied the 1996 team record by going a 13th straight game without multiple hits with runners in scoring position.
Lindor homered seven pitches in, hitting a first-pitch fastball from Joe Musgrove (4-6) over the right-center field fence. Jonathan Villar added a solo homer in the eighth.
“It’s a little bit of a relief,” Lindor said of hearing cheers at home. “The first couple of games when I got booed, it felt like I was playing on the road.”
Musgrove allowed three runs and four hits in 6 1/3 innings.
The Mets took a 3-0 lead in the sixth when Lindor walked, advanced to third on Pete Alonso’s single and scored on a groundout by Dominic Smith. Villar reached the second deck in right in the eighth.
PADRES: CF Trent Grisham (left foot contusion) was activated off the injured list after two rehab games with Triple-A El Paso and went 0 for 3. ... OF Brian O’Grady was optioned to El Paso. ... Tingler said C Austin Nola (sprained knee) is experiencing less swelling and better mobility and could increase his baseball activities soon.
METS: An MRI on RHP Jacob deGrom (right flexor tendinitis) came back clean, and he is expected to make his next start Wednesday against the Chicago Cubs. ... 2B Jeff McNeil (hamstring) and OF Michael Conforto (hamstring) ran the bases. McNeil is to start a rehab assignment Sunday. ... RF Billy McKinney (sore right knee) was a late scratch from the starting lineup. An MRI on McKinney came back clean and Rojas said he is day-to-day.
Padres RHP Chris Paddack (2-5, 4.27) faces Mets LHP Joey Lucchesi (1-4, 5.79) in a matchup of former San Diego teammates.
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