Nola leads Phillies past Mets 3-1 for doubleheader splitNew York Mets' Wilmer Flores (4) is welcomed to home plate after hittting a walk-off home run during the tenth inning in the first game of a baseball doubleheader against the Philadelphia Phillies Monday, July 9, 2018, in New York. The Mets won 4-3. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)
Flores connected for a pinch-hit homer in the bottom of the 10th inning to give New York a 4-3 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies in the opener of a twinight doubleheader Monday.
In the makeup of an April 2 game postponed by snow, Flores led off the 10th and nearly reached safely on a hit by pitch. In fact, he contended the ball grazed his arm and he started toward first base. When plate umpire Tom Hallion called ball three, Flores motioned toward the New York dugout to request a replay review.
''It did hit him. We saw it on the replay and then I just talked to him,'' Mets starter Zack Wheeler said with a chuckle. ''Glad they didn't overturn it.''
The ruling stood following the review - but Flores did one better. He drove the next delivery from Victor Arano (1-1) off the left-field foul pole for his fourth career game-ending homer and second this season.
That gave Flores four of New York's five walk-off RBIs this year and 10 in his career, three more than anyone else in the majors since 2014 and one better than David Wright for the most in Mets history. Flores' four game-ending homers are tied for the team record.
Smiling teammates hopped over the dugout railing and swarmed Flores at home plate after his fifth career pinch-hit homer, second this year.
And with this one, Wilmer walked 'em off again.
''It's almost getting to the point where you expect it,'' Wheeler said. ''I know when the game's on the line, that's the guy you want to have up there.''
A buzz went up in the crowd when Flores stepped to the plate, and fans were soon chanting his name. A favorite at Citi Field for years now, Flores started at second base and batted third in the nightcap.
''He's obviously been kind of on fire lately,'' Mets manager Mickey Callaway said. ''Some guys just step up in those situations.''
Asdrubal Cabrera also went deep for New York and hit an RBI double off the top of the right-center fence. Shut out in their previous two games by Tampa Bay, the Mets won for only the fourth time in their past 21 home games.
''We didn't get the big hit in the big moment,'' manager Gabe Kapler said. ''We've had that happen from time to time during the season.''
Tim Peterson (2-1) pitched out of trouble in the 10th, and Robert Gsellman escaped a big jam in the eighth for the Mets.
Cabrera hit a solo homer in the first and an RBI double in the third. New York also was handed a run when Phillies center fielder Odubel Herrera overran Jose Bautista's single for an error, allowing Brandon Nimmo to score from first.
Williams and Rhys Hoskins each had a two-out RBI single off Wheeler in the first two innings. Franco tied the score at 3 with his 11th homer in the fourth.
Despite pitching pretty well lately, Wheeler is 0-5 in 13 starts since his last win April 29 at San Diego. That's the longest stretch without a victory for a Mets starter since 1998.
''I think they only hit one ball hard. Kind of a frustrating day for me,'' Wheeler said.
Phillies starter Zach Eflin gave up three runs and five hits in five innings. He was 6-0 with a 1.91 ERA in his previous six starts.
''I thought he pitched great. He didn't have the best fortune today, and I think that hurt him a little,'' Kapler said. ''But I thought he filled up the strike zone and he did a really good job for us.''
Phillies: RHP Vince Velasquez (bruised right forearm) is expected back from the disabled list to pitch Wednesday night against All-Star ace Jacob deGrom in the finale of the four-game series. ... RHP Luis Garcia (strained right wrist) is getting ''really close'' to returning, Kapler said.
Mets: 3B Todd Frazier was placed on the 10-day DL with a strained muscle in his left rib cage. ... The team is optimistic RHP Noah Syndergaard will rejoin the rotation this weekend against Washington, Callaway said. Syndergaard has been sidelined since late May with a strained ligament in his right index finger. ... LHP Jason Vargas (strained right calf) allowed one hit over six shutout innings in a rehab outing for Class A Brooklyn. He struck out nine, walked none and threw 49 of 64 pitches for strikes. Vargas also could return to the big league rotation this weekend.
Philadelphia recalled LHP Hoby Milner from Lehigh Valley and added RHP Jake Thompson as the 26th man for the doubleheader. ... Between games, the Mets reinstated LHP Jerry Blevins from the bereavement list and designated RHP Chris Beck for assignment.
Phillies: RHP Aaron Nola (11-2, 2.41 ERA), named to his first All-Star team Sunday, was trying to become the National League's first 12-game winner - and match his career high for victories - when he started the nightcap. Mets rookie RHP Corey Oswalt (0-1, 7.94) made his third major league start and fourth appearance
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