Jeff McNeil led off the ninth inning with a home run to right field, snapping a tie and sending the Mets to a 2-1 victory over the Marlins Monday night in Miami.
Pitchers have been busting McNeil inside all season and for the first four months of the year, McNeil had no answers. But the pitch he homered on Monday was on the outside third of the plate. But McNeil pulled it anyway, using a swing that reminded Gary Cohen of Kirk Gibson’s home run off of Dennis Eckersley.
Jose Butto did not factor into the decision but turned in another strong performance, allowing just one run in six innings. Butto apparently gave up a two-run homer but the umpires conferred and changed the call to a foul ball. The Marlins’ manager came out to complain and ultimately they had a crew chief challenge. The issue was that the ball was hit very high, clearing the top of the foul pole. We never got a definitive replay but judging from where the ball landed, it’s hard to imagine that it was a fair ball. If it was fair, it took a very serious left turn to land where it did.
The Mets are now 6-2 against the Marlins this year. Do you think there are Marlins fans out there lamenting that the Mets always play them tough? Since 2014, the Mets have taken the series from the Marlins eight times in nine seasons, are leading this year and have a 104-69 record against their division rival.