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Alonso doubles as pitch hitter and sparks Mets comeback, a day after hit on hand by pitch

 The Associated Press  |    May 30th, 2024 4:35pm EDT

NEW YORK (AP) — Relieved he didn’t break any bones when hit by a pitch a day earlier, Pete Alonso twice walked into the office of New York Mets manager Carlos Mendoza after batting practice Thursday to say he was available to pinch hit.

Alonso came up with one of the more memorable hits in the team’s sorry season.

Back from two days of scans on his right hand, Alonso doubled in the seventh inning and scored the tying run on Francisco Lindor’s fourth hit of the game. The Mets beat the Diamondbacks 3-2 behind J.D. Martinez’s tiebreaking home run off Ryan Thompson in the eighth.

“I was really happy with how everything responded in just a short matter of time,” Alonso said. “I feel very fortunate and lucky, and, yeah, I feel like I definitely dodged a bullet.”

New York (23-33) stopped a four-game losing streak and won for just the second time in 10 games. Lindor and Brandon Nimmo had called a team meeting after Wednesday’s 10-3 loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers.

“We did a great job of breaking the cycle of, obviously, the losing,” Alonso said. “And once you get out of that cycle, we can start to build day to day.”

Alonso was hit on the middle knuckle by a 93 mph fastball from James Paxton and left Wednesday’s game. Alonso said an X-ray and bone scan on Wednesday night and an MRI on Thursday didn’t detect any breaks but swelling remained.

“I was worried that he didn’t fight the fact that he wasn’t going to be in the lineup,” Mendoza said.

Alonso pinch hit with one out in the seventh inning against left-hander Joe Mantiply with the Mets trailing 2-1. Alonso doubled down the left-field line in his first pinch-hit appearance since 2021, improving to 2 for 9 as a pinch hitter in his big league career. Lindor singled him in against Thompson with two outs.

Lindor had started the comeback with a third-inning home run against Brandon Hughes, his ninth homer this season but just the second from the right side for the switch-hitter

“I feel like vibes are the most important thing on a daily basis,” said Lindor, who raised his average from .211 to .225. “You got to be optimistic. You got to stay upbeat. You got to stay in a state of mind where you believe you can do anything.”

Martinez hit his fourth home run of the season, driving a first-pitch sinker from Thompson into the black batter’s eye beyond center field.

“It was one of the better meetings I think I’ve had as far as positivity and us leaving a meeting actually confident,” Martinez said. “It was like, no, let’s start having fun again and start enjoying this. If we lose, we lose. We’re putting the pressure on ourselves at this point.”

“I said in the meeting: No one thinks we’re going to win 100 games this year. I guarantee you. You can ask everybody. Everyone is going to put all the money that we’re not. We have no pressure on us. The pressure’s on everyone else right now. Let them have it. If we lose we lose. They already think we’re the worst in baseball.”


AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/mlb

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The Associated Press