NEW YORK -- Kirk Nieuwenhuis hit a three-run home run off the right-field signage to cap a stunning ninth inning comeback and lift the New York Mets to a 4-3 win over the Chicago Cubs in front of a Father's Day crowd of 30,256 at Citi Field.
The Mets had just three hits in the first eight innings against Matt Garza and Jason Russell before busting out against Carlos Marmol, who was closing only because Kevin Gregg had pitched the past four days.
Marlon Byrd hit a solo homer leading off the ninth before Lucas Duda drew a walk. John Buck followed with a single and Nieuwenhuis crushed Marmol's second pitch well beyond the right-field wall to give the Mets the surprising walk-off win.
It was the first walk-off hit for Nieuwenhuis, who flung his helmet into the air between third and home and leaped on to the plate.
The Mets had scored just five runs in the first 26 innings of the series.
The winning rally made a winner out of Bobby Parnell (5-3). Marmol fell to 2-4.
Garza allowed just three hits and two walks and struck out five in seven innings.
The Cubs needed just 13 pitches to take a 1-0 lead in the first off Mets starter Jeremy Hefner. They scored two runs in the fifth off what should have been an inning-ending groundout by Alfonso Soriano.
With runners at first and second, Soriano grounded to third base, but David Wright's throw sailed over the head of first baseman Daniel Murphy. Starlin Castro scored on the play and Murphy's throw to the plate to try to get Nate Schierholtz flew to the right of catcher John Buck. Soriano went to third and almost made a dash for home after Wright, backing up the play, overthrew Hefner at home.
Wright and Murphy were charged with errors on the play. An error by Murphy in Hefner's last start led to five unearned runs in the Mets' 9-2 loss to the Cardinals on Tuesday.
Castro and Luis Valbuena each had two hits and a run scored for the Cubs while Soriano had the RBI single in the first.
Wright and Duda each had a double for the Mets.
NOTES: The Mets purchased the contract of RHP Carlos Torres from Triple-A Las Vegas and optioned RHP Greg Burke to Las Vegas. To make room for Torres on the 40-man roster, the Mets designated for assignment RHP Collin McHugh. Torres threw two scoreless innings in relief of Hefner. ... Wright reached base for the 10th time in his past 12 plate appearances with his double in the first inning. ... Cubs OF David DeJesus, who went on the 15-day disabled list Saturday with a right shoulder sprain suffered when he crashed into the centerfield wall Friday night, headed back to Chicago before the game and will undergo an MRI Monday. ... Valbuena batted leadoff for the first time this season and only the fourth time in 372 big league games. Manager Dale Sveum said Saturday that Valbuena and Ryan Sweeney were the main candidates to bat leadoff in DeJesus' absence.