Pete Alonso homered twice for the second time this season, drove in five runs and bounced back from a costly error as the New York Mets beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 9-4 Saturday night.
Francisco Lindor and Eduardo Escobar also went deep for the Mets, who bounced back after being held to one run in dropping the first two games of the four-game series between the NL’s top teams. Coincidentally, that run was also on an Alonso homer.
Dodgers starter Walker Buehler was chased early, and Los Angeles ended up using seven pitchers. Manager Dave Roberts tried to bring in infielder Zach McKinstry to pitch the ninth inning, apparently unaware of a rule barring position players from pitching in games with a deficit of five runs or fewer. Umpires halted McKinstry from taking the mound, forcing Roberts to warm reliever Evan Phillips.
Colin Holderman (3-0), the second of seven Mets pitchers, was credited with the win.
Mookie Betts drove in three runs for the Dodgers, who have dropped four of six on their current homestand. Buehler (6-2) had the shortest outing of his career, allowing five runs in 2 1/3 innings.
Trea Turner went 0 for 4 to snap his 26-game hitting streak, which was the longest in the majors this season.
Alonso has 16 homers, tied with Betts for the NL lead and Cleveland’s Jose Ramirez for the major league-lead in RBIs with 53. The power-hitting first baseman is also the first player in the 60-year history of Dodger Stadium to go deep seven times in his first 11 games played here.
The Dodgers took a 4-1 lead in the second, mainly on an error by Alonso. With one out in the second, he fielded Cody Bellinger’s grounder, but his throw to second base drew Lindor off the bag, allowing Hanser Alberto to get in safely. The Dodgers would eventually have the bases loaded with two outs when Betts lined a double to the wall in right-center to clear the bases.
The Mets responded with four of their own in the third. Starling Marte had an RBI double, and Brandon Nimmo scored on Lindor’s grounder to bring New York within a run before Alonso chased Buehler after driving a slider over the wall in left field to give the Mets a 5-4 lead.
Alonso then notched the 13th multi-homer game of his career with a three-run shot to right in the seventh to extend the lead to 9-4.
Lindor got the Mets on the board with a solo shot in the first inning, and Escobar homered in the fourth. It is the second time the Mets have gone deep four times in a game this season.
UMPIRES BAR DODGERS FROM PITCHING POSITION PLAYER
Umpires barred Dodgers manager Dave Roberts from using a position player to pitch the ninth inning against the New York Mets on Saturday night, enforcing a rule Roberts apparently did not know that prevents teams from using non-pitchers with a deficit of five runs or fewer.
With Los Angeles trailing 9-4, Roberts sent utility player Zach McKinstry to the mound to begin the ninth, but McKinstry was halted by umpires. A lengthy delay and discussion followed, and umpires used headsets to discuss the situation with officials in New York.
Crew chief C.B. Bucknor announced that McKinstry would not be allowed to pitch, and right-hander Evan Phillips began warming in the Dodgers bullpen.
When umpires signaled that Phillips needed to relocate his warm-up throws to the game mound, bullpen coach Josh Bard jogged out of the bullpen and screamed that Phillips wasn’t ready. Phillips was given unlimited time to warm up, and the delay lasted around 11 minutes in total.
Mets manager Buck Showalter shook his head repeatedly and paced in the visiting dugout during the delay. He walked onto the field for an explanation from umpires after Bucknor’s announcement, but said later he was not upset that Phillips was given full time to loosen up.
After position players made 90 pitching appearances in 2019 and 75 in 2018, Major League Baseball and the players association agreed prior to the 2020 season to outlaw using position players as pitchers in games with a deficit of five runs or fewer. The rule was suspended the past two years amid concerns over pitcher injuries prompted by the pandemic, but it was restored this season.
McKinstry could have pitched in the ninth inning if he was designated as a two-way player, but the infielder, who was called up on Thursday, is not. The Dodgers do not have anyone designated as a two-way player. McKinstry was moved to third base instead.
Dodgers starter Walker Buehler made the shortest start of his career, allowing five runs in 2 1/3 innings, and Los Angeles ended up using seven pitchers. Phillips allowed one hit and struck out two in the ninth, and the Dodgers lost 9-4.
David Peterson allowed four runs in 3 2/3 innings but only one earned, and struck out six. The left-hander gave up only two hits but walked four and was at 90 pitches when Buck Showalter pulled him after Betts lined a foul ball down the left-field line.
Buehler didn’t get out of the third inning for only the second time in 105 career starts. He yielded five hits with two walks and three strikeouts.
Mets: RHP Tylor Megill (right biceps tendinitis) will throw 55 pitches or go four innings during a rehab appearance Sunday at Double-A Binghamton.
Dodgers: LHP Clayton Kershaw (right SI joint inflammation) will go at least three innings for Class A Rancho Cucamonga on Sunday. Roberts said Kershaw could throw an extra inning in the bullpen depending on his pitch count. Roberts added there is a possibility that Kershaw could return to the rotation during next weekend’s series in San Francisco.
Mets: RHP Trevor Williams (1-3, 3.58 ERA) starts against LA on Sunday. He threw five scoreless innings in his last start against Washington on May 31.
Dodgers: LHP Julio Urías (3-5, 2.89 ERA) pitches Sunday. He has dropped four of his last five starts.