The stakes aren’t nearly as high and with it came the risk of this being a trap series, but the Mets continue to grind out positive results with a 6-2 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on Tuesday night at Citi Field to already clinch the series victory.
Francisco Lindor, Jeff McNeil, and Darin Ruf each drove in two runs to support Carlos Carrasco, who put together another quality start with two runs allowed on seven hits with and strikeouts over 6.2 innings of work.
The Mets (72-39) are more than 32 games over .500 for the first time since they were 34 games above on September 19, 2006 (92-58).
Lindor continued what will be a historic season for a Mets shortstop when he put the Mets ahead in the third inning with a two-run home run that just cleared the left-field wall for his 20th of the season.
He tied himself for second in franchise history with 20 home runs by a shortstop, just three behind Asdrubal Cabrera’s franchise record of 23 set in 2016. He also moved to within two RBI of Jose Reyes’ franchise record for a shortstop (81) in 2006.
The round-tripper also extended his on-base streak to 17 consecutive games, raising his batting average to .409 during that span after the big knock.
McNeil kept the power surge going in the fourth inning when he led the frame off with his seventh home run of the season, just clearing the right-center-field fence to put the Mets up three.
His third home run in 11 games — after going the first 86 with just four — extended his hitting streak to 12 games, which is currently tied for second-longest in the majors. It was also his first home run off a left-hander in Reds starter Mike Minor since September of 2019.
McNeil picked up his second RBI of the night in the sixth inning with a seeing-eye single that scored Darin Ruf, who doubled just moments earlier.
With a lead intact, Carrasco settled down by retiring seven straight batters between the fourth and sixth innings, including striking out the side in the fifth.
Cincinnati finally got to him in the seventh when Jake Fraley hit the Shea Bridge in right-center field with a two-run shot to halve the Mets’ lead. Following four homer-less outings, Carrasco has now given up round-trippers in each of his last two outings.
Two more two-out singles in the seventh ultimately drove the righty. Showalter called upon Mychal Givens, who struck out Nick Senzel to get out of the seventh
The Mets got it right back in the bottom half of the frame when, after walking Pete Alonso intentionally to load the bases with two outs, Darin Ruf snuck a single through the right side to score a pair. In five games with the Mets since being acquired from the San Francisco Giants, Ruf has five RBI.
Trevor May didn’t do much to keep that comfort level intact, though. The reliever loaded the bases with two outs after allowing a single and two walks. But he struck out Alejo Lopez swinging to get out of it unscathed and escape the last threat the Reds had to offer.