July 7, 2018 / 2:31 AM / 8 months ago

Mets rock Rays on Bautista's walk-off grand slam

EditorsNote: Tweak in fifth graf

Jose Bautista crushed a walk-off grand slam with two outs in the ninth inning Friday night to lift the New York Mets to a 5-1 win over the Tampa Bay Rays at Citi Field.

The Mets have won two straight — only their third winning streak of two games or more since a nine-game winning streak ended Apr. 13. The Rays have lost two straight and three of four.

Todd Frazier led off the ninth by working a walk against Chaz Roe (1-2). Devin Mesoraco followed with a single, after which Amed Rosario advanced both runners with a bunt. After pinch hitter Dominic Smith grounded out to Roe, Brandon Nimmo was intentionally walked to bring up Bautista, who homered well into the left field seats on Roe’s next pitch for his first career walk-off homer.

Jeurys Familia (4-4) got into and out of a bases-loaded jam in the ninth, when he struck out Willy Adames to leave the bases loaded.

The Mets took the lead in the third when Nimmo came up with one out against Ryan Yarbrough — the second of six Rays pitchers — and reached on a two-base error by shortstop Adames. Nimmo scored on Asdrubal Cabrera’s single.

Adames redeemed himself in the fifth, when he hit his third homer of the season to center with two outs.

The Mets squandered a chance to take the lead in the sixth, when Wilmer Flores reached on a fielder’s choice following Michael Conforto’s single and was later thrown out by at least 10 feet while trying to score on Todd Frazier’s double.

Neither starter factored into the decision despite impressive work.

Mets ace Jacob deGrom’s hard-luck streak continued as he allowed one run on four hits and one walk while striking out eight over eight innings in lowering his major-league-leading ERA from 1.84 to 1.79. He has a 1.39 ERA in his last 14 starts dating back to April 21, but is just 3-4 during that span. The Mets are 4-10 in those starts.

Rays “opener” Ryne Stanek allowed one hit and no walks while striking out four over two scoreless innings. It was the 10th “start” for Stanek, who matched a career high by pitching two innings for the third time this season. Stanek has a 1.23 ERA as a starter in 2018.

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