Lindor's 3rd homer lifts Mets whistling past Yanks 7-6
(AP Photo/Noah K. Murray)
By RONALD BLUM
AP Baseball Writer
NEW YORK (AP) Francisco Lindor whistled at the Yankees, and sent the ball whistling over the wall - three times.
In the midst of a miserable first season with the Mets, Lindor kept alive his new team's postseason chances and dropped its crosstown rival out of a playoff position.
He nearly set off a brawl when he taunted his opponents after his second home run, then broke an eighth-inning tie with his third long ball in a dramatic Subway Series-ending 7-6 victory on Sunday night.
"Wow, what an amazing weekend," the All-Star shortstop said. "It felt like playoffs, but hot."
Lindor hit a three-run homer batting left-handed in the second off on a hanging breaking ball from rookie Clarke Schmidt, had a solo homer in the sixth hitting right-handed on a Wandy Peralta changeup and broke a 6-6 tie from the left side on a fastball from Chad Green (7-7).
It was the first career three-homer game for Lindor, hitting .227 in his first season with the Mets.
While rounding the bases on his second homer, Lindor put a hand in front of his mouth, turned to shortstop Gleyber Torres and made a taunting motion as if to whistle while saying: "Keep on whistling." That referenced the Mets' belief that Taijuan Walker was tipping his pitches Saturday and the Yankees were whistling to signal their batters.
Lindor looked at Peralta and recalled saying something to the pitcher and said he may have spoken toward the Yankees' dugout.
"I can't accuse them of them whistling for the signs because I'm not 100%" Lindor said. "But I know what I heard and I felt like there was something out of the ordinary going on. .. I took that personal."
"One thing is when you're in the batter's box and you're seeing something," Lindor explained. "Another thing is when you're getting help from the whole entire team."
The Yankees' Joey Gallo said Peralta had whistled Saturday "just trying to liven up the dugout" and was "definitely not for pitch tipping."
The chirping escalated when Stanton tied the score with a two-run homer in the seventh off left-hander Brad Hand.
Stanton slowed to a walk after rounding second in his trot, turned his back toward third and started shouting with the shortstop. Both Lindor and second baseman Javier Baez waved at Stanton to come at them, and by the time Stanton reached the plate, players from both dugouts had spilled onto the field and bullpens emptied, too.
"If you got a problem with Wandy, give it to Wandy," Stanton said later. "Don't be talking to multiple people, bringing everybody into it, especially running around the bases, was my thought process," Stanton said. "Obviously, I didn't get all of that out."
The delay lasted nearly four minutes.
"Boys will be boys," Yankees manager Aaron Boone said.
A crowd of 33,305 that appeared evenly split booed Lindor before his third homer. He said he walked to the plate trying to hit a home run, then with a 2-0 count heard Javier Baez. With the count 2-0, Lindor sent a 96.5 mph fastball to right, then turned to cheers and prompted Lindor to make a curtain call.
"I've been being booed for a very long time," he said.
Seth Lugo (4-2) pitched the eighth, and Edwin Diaz got his 29th save in 35 chances. He allowed DJ LeMahieu's one-out single and walked Anthony Rizzo on four pitches.
Brett Gardner, who entered when Aaron Judge left in the third inning because of dizziness, struck out. James McCann's passed ball advanced the runners, and Stanton hit a looper to Lindor that ended a 4-hour, 6-minute game.
"Barring no physical fights, talk is cheap," Stanton said. "The talk is out on the field, getting it done, getting the W. And we were both in an opportunity to get that done. And I didn't come up (through) in that situation."
The Yankees lost for the 12th time in 15 games following a 13-game winning streak and dropped one game behind Boston and Toronto, who lead for the two AL wild cards.
The Mets went 4-2 against the Yankees this year and closed within three games for the second NL wild card but have three teams in front of them.
Stanton's RBI double and Gallo's sacrifice fly built a 2-0 lead in the first off Carlos Carrasco, Gallo's second sacrifice fly in 2,237 plate appearances. Torres had pulled the Yankees to 5-4 with a two-run homer against Jeurys Familia.
Lindor said his performance didn't quite make him feel like a New Yorker just yet.
"I don't have the accent yet," he said.
Carrasco allowed two runs and three hits in five innings with four walks.
Schmidt gave up five runs - two earned - seven hits and three walks in 4 1/3 innings. He was making his first big league appearance since last year. He walked in his first plate appearance since high school in 2014.
Schmidt tied the Yankees' record of 58 players used, set in 2014. Infielder Andrew Velazquez was optioned to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
Yankees: RHP Gerrit Cole (strained hamstring) will start Tuesday at Baltimore. ... OF Clint Frazier won't play for the Yankees again this season.
Mets: RHP Jacob deGrom may throw off a mound this week.
Yankees: RHP Luis Gil (1-0, 1.42) starts Monday's makeup game against visiting Minnesota and RHP John Gant (5-9, 3.78).
Mets: 41-year-old LHP Rich Hill (6-6, 3.82) starts Monday's series opener against St. Louis and 40-year-old RHP Adam Wainwright (15-7, 4,38).
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Updated September 13, 2021