MIAMI - Just one day after playing their sloppiest game of the season, the Mets responded with an 8-6 win over the Marlins Tuesday night, when they used an offensive onslaught to hide their other shortcomings.
The slumping David Wright went 3-for-4 with three RBIs, including a pair of doubles that snapped a stretch of 84 straight plate appearances without an extra-base hit. Leadoff man Juan Lagares equaled a career high by going 4-for-4 with a walk while knocking in a pair of runs and swiping two bases.
The Mets bashed 16 hits and drummed up enough offense to mask a shaky start by lefthander Jonathon Niese. In six innings, Niese allowed six runs and 10 hits, including a mammoth two-run shot by Giancarlo Stanton.
Yet Niese upped his record to 8-10, even though he spent most of the night keeping the Marlins in the game.
Though their playoff hopes have been long extinguished, the fate of manager Terry Collins lies in whether the club avoids a tailspin to finish the season. On Monday, the Mets delivered the type of performance that could cost him his job.
The Mets committed six errors while taking a brutal 9-6 loss to the Marlins. The performance looked particularly bad for Collins.
"We're accountable for every time we play," he said. "The games we did really good, we were there for those, too. We're there when things are bad, we're there when things are good. It reflects on the manager, that comes with the territory."
In explaining why he didn't address the club after its horrid performance, Collins chalked up the errors to an isolated incident. "If I see similar things tonight, then I got something to say," he said. "After a game like that, just turn your head and go get them tomorrow."
The Mets didn't waste time turning the tide against Brad Penny. Out of the big leagues since 2012, the 36-year-old righty signed a minor-league deal with the Marlins earlier this summer, eventually earning a promotion three weeks ago.
Penny (1-1) had once been a bitter adversary of the Mets during his first stint with the Marlins, which ended 10 years ago. He had once been at the center of a simmering feud between the NL East rivals.
But he showed none of that old fire, chased after allowing four runs and seven hits in three innings. He departed with the Mets ahead 4-0 on a wild pitch and run-scoring hits by Wright, Lagares and Matt den Dekker.
Yet even with the promising start, the Marlins stayed in it. Stanton highlighted a three-run third with a homer, his NL-leading 35th of the season. The two-run shot that cut the lead to 4-3 came right after Wright's two-out throwing error.
The Mets pushed the advantage to 7-3 in the fourth with RBI hits by Lagares, Wright and Lucas Duda. But again, Niese gave back some of that padding, giving up a pair of runs before wiggling out of the fourth. The teams traded sacrifice flies in the sixth, with the Marlins keeping within two runs. But the Mets bullpen made the lead stand up.
In the seventh, Carlos Torres got Casey McGehee to hit into a key double play. In the eighth, setup man Jeurys Familia bounced back from a poor outing with a shutout inning. And in the ninth, closer Jenrry Mejia nailed down his 22nd save.