Harvey, Parnell Pitch Mets to 3-2 Win Over Blue Jays
Matt Harvey returned to form with seven shutout innings and an RBI double, leading the New York Mets to a 3-2 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays on Tuesday night.
Bobby Parnell earned a five-out save in his third outing since Tommy John surgery, and the NL East leaders held on without their top late relievers thanks in part to a major baserunning blunder by the Blue Jays.
One night after ending Toronto's 11-game winning streak, the Mets won for the fifth time in six games and improved to 11-0 at home against the Blue Jays.
Wilmer Flores and Ruben Tejada each knocked in a run and scored another to help New York build a 3-0 cushion. Harvey (7-4), who was 1-3 with a 7.20 ERA in his previous four starts, allowed four hits against the best offense in baseball and gave a huge fist pump after working a perfect seventh.
The ace right-hander, also back from Tommy John surgery this season, struck out six, walked none and was lifted after 107 pitches.
Minus closer Jeurys Familia and hard-throwing rookie Hansel Robles due to heavy workloads lately, Mets manager Terry Collins said before the game that Carlos Torres would be his closer if needed.
Torres, however, entered to start the eighth and quickly got in trouble. He issued a leadoff walk and gave up a single to Kevin Pillar before former Mets star Jose Reyes singled to right for his first hit in nine at-bats during his return to Citi Field this week.
Ryan Goins was held at third base — but Pillar didn't realize it. He went tearing around second and, with third already occupied, was a sitting duck to be tagged out by first baseman Lucas Duda after Curtis Granderson's throw from the outfield was cut off.
Torres walked Josh Donaldson to load the bases before Parnell gave up a sacrifice fly to Jose Bautista and a run-scoring single to Edwin Encarnacion. But the right-hander, who saved 22 games for the Mets in 2013 before missing the final two months of the season with a herniated disk in his neck, struck out Chris Colabello on a ball in the dirt.
Parnell then worked a 1-2-3 ninth for his first save since July 30, 2013. He blew a save opportunity on opening day last year, then missed the rest of the season recovering from his reconstructive elbow operation.
After getting the final out, the bearded Parnell breathed a sigh of relief and flashed a smile on the mound.
Flores hit a leadoff double in the second against Scott Copeland (1-1) and scored on Tejada's single. With two outs, Harvey lashed a ringing double to left-center to make it 2-0.
It was his fifth career double and sixth RBI — the first of each since 2013. Mets pitchers have 22 hits this season, most of any staff in the majors.
Juan Lagares opened the third inning with a single and raced to third base on Travis d'Arnaud's single before Flores delivered a sacrifice fly.
Making his second major league start, Copeland was pulled for a pinch hitter in the fifth. He pitched again in place of right-hander Aaron Sanchez, put on the 15-day disabled list Monday with a mild lat muscle strain.
Blue Jays: Sanchez is likely to miss his next turn on Sunday as well, manager John Gibbons said. ... Rookie 2B Devon Travis (left shoulder) began a rehab assignment Monday night with Double-A New Hampshire and went 0 for 3 with a sacrifice fly. Toronto hopes to get Travis back within a week or so.
Mets: LF Michael Cuddyer was rested in favor of rookie Darrell Ceciliani, who had two hits. Ceciliani will stay in the lineup the next two nights in Toronto, Collins said, because he plans to use Cuddyer and maybe fellow outfielder Curtis Granderson at DH to give their thirty-something legs a break on the turf at Rogers Centre.
Blue Jays: RHP Drew Hutchison (5-1, 5.75 ERA) pitches Wednesday night at home against the Mets.
Mets: LHP Jonathon Niese (3-6, 4.24) is 0-4 with a 6.82 ERA in his past six starts, though he's pitched pretty well the last two times out. Niese has permitted 11 unearned runs, second-most in the majors behind Padres RHP Andrew Cashner (13). In his only previous start against the Blue Jays, Niese gave up eight runs, eight hits and a career-high four homers over three innings in a 14-5 loss at Toronto in May 2012.