Rafael Ortega hits walk-off single against Angels as David Peterson turns in best outing for Mets this season

NEW YORK — David Peterson has been able to maintain his confidence throughout a challenging season, but the Mets are hoping he can build up more of it with a few more good starts in August and September.

Peterson turned in a solid performance against the Los Angeles Angels on Sunday afternoon at Citi Field in the Mets’ 3-2 walk-off win. He didn’t get the decision, but it was a victory of sorts for the Mets who have struggled to get their young arms on a consistent track.

With the game tied at 2-2, the Mets loaded the bases on right-hander Reynaldo Lopez (2-7). Rafael Ortega lined one to right field that went right at Hunter Renfroe, but the outfielder couldn’t glove it and pinch-runner Tim Locastro scored easily.

Peterson turned in what could arguably be considered his best performance of the year, limiting the Angels to one earned run on three hits over seven innings. Peterson walked three and struck out eight, which tied his season-high mark. It was the first time all season the lefty went a full seven innings, at least at the major league level.

Even more impressive, Peterson was able to retire Shohei Ohtani all three times he faced the AL MVP candidate. Ohtani has terrorized the Mets all weekend, reaching base safely eight times until Sunday.

Right-hander Drew Smith also handled Ohtani with relative ease, but the hitter who came before him gave the reliever trouble. With the score tied at 1-1 in the eighth, Anaheim’s leadoff man Luis Rengifo teed off on a middle-middle slider and took it over the fence.

Adam Ottavino (1-4) earned his first win of the season with a scoreless ninth to give the Mets (60-71) a chance to walk it off and salvage the series. The Angels (63-68) took the first two contests to win the series.

The Mets stayed resilient, tying the game in the bottom of the inning. Francisco Lindor extended his hitting streak to 13 games with a single off reliever Matt Moore. Pete Alonso doubled him home.

Moore replaced right-handed starter Griffin Canning, who held the Mets to one run over seven innings.

The Mets’ first run was gifted to them in the form of a defensive miscue by Rengifo in the fourth inning. With two out and runners on first and second, Francisco Alvarez hit a hard grounder up the middle to Rengifo, who made a tough stop on the grass. However, Rengifo failed to make a throw to either second base or first. Jeff McNeil briefly stopped at third and saw that Rengifo was still on the ground trying to make a decision and broke for home. Rengifo’s throw was wide and McNeil came home safe.