Alonso, Mets power up to pound Giants 11-4
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Pete Alonso set another record after making a small tweak to his swing. Dominic Smith quickly got redemption. And the New York Mets bounced back from a pair of frustrating extra-inning losses.
Alonso came off the bench and hit his 33rd home run, setting the Mets rookie record for RBIs as New York beat San Francisco 11-4 Saturday to end the Giants’ seven-game winning streak.
“Results, positive results,” Mets manager Mickey Callaway said. “We went through a two-day lull, it was tough, but we got back on track today.”
Smith, Jeff McNeil and Todd Frazier all went deep as the Mets powered up with four home runs, one day after losing 1-0 in 10 innings. Walker Lockett (1-1) pitched five mostly sharp innings to earn his first major league victory.
Before the game Callaway said that he felt Alonso needed a break with his young first baseman in a 3-for-30 slump coming out of the All-Star break after winning the Home Run Derby.
Alonso wasn’t happy — “I don’t feel worn down,” he said — but used the time to work on his swing, then took a spot on the bench until Callaway called for him to pinch-hit in the pitcher’s spot in the sixth.
Alonso’s three-run homer off Derek Holland gave him 75 RBIs, one more than Darryl Strawberry had as a Mets rookie in 1983. Alonso already holds the franchise rookie records for home runs and extra-base hits.
“It was a great mental health day,” Alonso said. “I went down in the third inning and worked on some stuff in the cage. I was looking in too big of an area. The ball needs to start in a smaller window, and the pitch that I hit the home run started in that small, tight window where I wanted it.”
Callaway beamed afterward.
“That’s what you want,” Callaway said. “One at-bat, three RBIs, a homer and go rest some more.”
New York is 5-3 on its nine-game road trip. The Mets’ only other winning road trip came when they started the year 5-1 away from Citi Field.
Pablo Sandoval singled four times for the Giants. San Francisco (49-50) had won 14 of 16 and was attempting to get above .500 for the first time this season.
“We didn’t swing the bats like we have been,” manager Bruce Bochy said. “Just a little off. One of those days where they had their day and it’s a rough day for us.”
Lockett gave up five hits and one run after being called up from Triple-A Syracuse before the game. He struck out three and didn’t walk a batter.
Smith, whose error in left field in the 10th inning allowed the winning run to score Friday night, hit a solo home run in the second, had an RBI single in the fourth then added a two-run single in the ninth.
“I just wanted to turn the page from last night,” Smith said. “That’s something that none of us wants to do. To come back today and play well and the team play well, it was fun.”
McNeil homered in the fifth off the foul pole in right. Frazier hit his 13th home run in the sixth, four batters before Alonso went deep.
Jeff Samardzija (7-8) allowed four runs and six hits in five innings. He has lost all six career starts against the Mets.
New York reliever Stephen Nogosek entered with a 10-run lead in the ninth but struggled for the final three outs. Nogosek gave up a two-run home run to Alex Dickerson and a one-out solo shot by Mike Yastrzemski before getting a flyout and strikeout to end it.
The Mets optioned right-hander Jacob Rhame to Syracuse to make room for Lockett. Rhame was the losing pitcher Friday.
HONORING WILLIE MAC
The Junior Giants Stretch Drive that honors the legacy of Hall of Fame first baseman Willie McCovey ends Sunday. Proceeds from the three-day event will help fund the program which supports 24,000 children in underserved communities. McCovey passed away last October.
Giants: 3B Evan Longoria (plantar fasciitis) is still wearing a walking boot on his left foot but has resumed baseball activities. Longoria played catch and did some light throwing before the game.
Mets LHP Steven Matz (5-6, 4.87 ERA) is winless in his previous five starts heading into Sunday’s series finale. The Giants plan to call up LHP Connor Menez to make his major league debut Sunday. Menez was 2-0 with a 3.82 ERA in six starts for Triple-A Sacramento.