Realmuto’s walk-off homer lifts Marlins past Mets
MIAMI — J.T. Realmuto said it felt strange.
New York Mets closer AJ Ramos, who was with the Miami Marlins for nearly six years before being traded in July, faced his former team for the first time.
And the result, for Ramos at least, was not pretty.
After Ramos blew a save chance in the ninth, Realmuto hit a walk-off homer in the bottom of the 10th as Miami rallied to defeat New York 5-4 on Tuesday night at Marlins Park.
Realmuto’s homer, off of reliever Paul Sewald (0-6), was his 17th of the season. Reliever Kyle Barraclough (6-2) earned the win after pitching a scoreless top of the 10th.
It was Realmuto’s second career walk-off hit and his first walk-off homer. Both of his walk-off hits have come against the Mets.
“It’s been a rough month,” Realmuto said of Marlins (71-80), who have lost 17 of the past 22 games. “To be able to come back tonight was huge for us.”
With Ramos looking for career save No. 100, Miami rallied to score three runs in the bottom of the ninth, tying the score 4-4.
“It was weird,” said Realmuto, who singled against Ramos. “When I stepped in the box, I looked at (Mets catcher Travis d’Arnaud) and said, ‘Man this is awkward.’
“I’ve caught (Ramos) a ton of innings, but I’ve never stepped in the box against him. I knew exactly what he was going to do. But it looks different when you’re in the box facing him.”
Ramos gave up a solo homer to Justin Bour and RBI singles to A.J. Ellis and Ichiro Suzuki.
“I know he was all fired up about getting in there,” Mets manager Terry Collins said of Ramos. “He just didn’t get it done.”
Ramos offered no excuses.
“They just beat me, plain and simple,” he said. “My stuff hasn’t been as crisp as normal lately. Maybe I was too amped, but they laid off some good pitches. They put the ball in play. They played better than me tonight.”
The Marlins won consecutive games for the first time since Aug. 27. They lead the season series against the Mets 11-7.
New York (65-86), which has lost seven of its past nine games overall, was led by Jose Reyes, who went 4-for-5 with a homer, and d’Arnaud, who finished 2-for-5 with a homer.
D’Arnaud is batting .364 (12-for-33) with three homers and nine RBIs against the Marlins this year. He slugged his 13th homer of the season in the sixth inning, snapping a 1-1 tie. He tied his career high in homers and set his personal best in RBIs (47).
Both starters took no-decisions.
Miami’s Odrisamer Despaigne pitched a quality start. He allowed six hits, one walk and three runs in six innings, but he has not won a game since 2015.
New York’s Seth Lugo allowed four hits, one walk and one run in five innings. The Mets have won 15 of Lugo’s past 23 starts, and he is 3-0 in his career against Miami.
Miami right fielder Giancarlo Stanton, who leads the majors with 55 homers, went 0-for-1 with four walks. It was his first four-walk game of the season, and he is on pace to hit 59 homers this year.
“I kept the ball in on him just to protect myself,” said Lugo, respecting Stanton’s power. “If you get it in the wrong spot, he might kill you.”
The teams traded solo homers early. Reyes pulled a pitch to right in the first inning for his 14th homer of the season. Miami’s Christian Yelich hit an opposite-field homer to left in the fourth to tie the score 1-1.
After d’Arnaud’s homer gave New York a 3-1 lead, the Mets increased their advantage to 4-1 on a ninth-inning, two-out RBI single by Reyes, who hit an 0-2 pitch from reliever Javy Guerra.
In the bottom of the ninth, the Marlins took advantage of Ramos’ slider. The two-out single by Suzuki tied the score, but Collins focused on a two-strike single by Ellis.
“It’s his big pitch,” Collins said of Ramos’ slider. “But you can’t leave it in the zone, and that’s what he did to Ellis. That’s the way the game goes.”
NOTES: Marlins SS Miguel Rojas, who hadn’t played since Sunday due to a shoulder injury, entered the game in the eighth inning as a defensive replacement. ... Miami is on its fourth starting shortstop of the season, Mike Aviles. Before him, it was Adeiny Hechavarria (traded), JT Riddle (injured) and Rojas. ... Marlins 2B Dee Gordon has 55 steals and trails National League-leader Billy Hamilton of the Cincinnati Reds by three. ... Mets SS Amed Rosario (stomach illness) missed his second straight game and may not return until Friday. He missed six games in July at Triple-A Las Vegas due to a similar ailment. He also missed six games due to a finger injury and one with a hip ailment. ... Mets RHP Noah Syndergaard (lat) is hoping to return and make two starts before the season ends.