Mets down Diamondbacks 7-4 behind Ronny Mauricio’s 1st-career home run

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Ronny Mauricio Mets
Ronny Mauricio bat flips his first career home run on Tuesday night against the Arizona Diamondbacks. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

QUEENS — Ronny Mauricio crushed his first career home run, and Pete Alonso and Francisco Alvarez provided long balls of their own as the New York Mets held off the Arizona Diamondbacks 7-4 on Tuesday night at Citi Field. 

In the fourth inning of a 1-1 game, Mauricio — who made his MLB debut on Sept. 1 and was playing in his 10th career game — jumped all over a 2-0 92-mph fastball that was up in the zone, sending it into the second deck of the Coca-Cola corner in right field at Citi Field. With an exit velocity of 112.4 mph, the benchmark round-tripper traveled an estimated 440 feet. 

“It’s incredible,” Mauricio said through a translator. “It was an exciting moment there. The way I think about it, it’s just a moment that’s unbelievable… When you square up a ball like that, you know that it’s going to go far or when you feel it off the bat, you know that you put some good wood on it.”

The Mets (66-78) scored six unanswered runs after Kettel Marte put the Diamondbacks in front with an RBI triple in the top of the third inning.

Brandon Nimmo led off the bottom of the frame with a triple of his own and came in to score on Francisco Lindor’s sacrifice fly. DJ Stewart then led off the fourth inning with a single to set the stage for Mauricio’s mammoth shot to make it 3-1.

Lindor picked up his second RBI of the night in the fifth with a run-scoring single, driving in Nimmo after he doubled to lead off the frame. While he was eliminated on the bases thanks to a Jeff McNeil fielder’s choice, Alonso cleared the bases with a monster shot into the left-field seats for his 44th home run of the season to put the hosts up five.

All six of the Mets’ runs came against Diamondbacks starter Ryne Nelson, who has now given up six runs in three of his last four outings. 

It helped build a cushion for Jose Butto’s win, the Mets’ starting pitcher putting together a solid outing with just one run allowed on two hits while working around three walks with a career-high seven strikeouts over five innings of work. The 25-year-old right-hander made his first start since Aug. 15 on Sept. 6, allowing just two runs in 6.1 innings against the Washington Nationals.  

“The last few starts have been really big,” Butto said. “They’ve been giving me a lot of confidence. I’ve been learning each and every day, after every bullpen. I’ve been really working hard.”

Reliever Grant Hartwig ran into immediate trouble in the sixth, though, allowing a run on a Lourdes Gurriel Jr. single before loading the bases in a four-run game with one out. He bounced back, though, and got pinch-hitter Evan Longoria to ground into an inning-ending 5-4-3 double play.

Sam Coonrod nearly gave it all up in the eighth inning by hitting a batter and walking another one with the bases loaded to plate two runs for Arizona, pulling it within two at 6-4 with one out. Adam Ottavino stopped the threat, however, coaxing an inning-ending double play from Corbin Carroll.

Alvarez provided some insurance in the bottom of the eighth when he skied his 23rd home run of the season just over the left-field fence to make it a three-run game. 

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