Kodai Senga, Mets play spoiler in 11-1 rout of Diamondbacks

NEW YORK — Kodai Senga struck out 10 over six scoreless innings, Jeff McNeil and Jonathan Araúz homered, and the New York Mets continued playing the spoiler with an 11-1 rout of the Arizona Diamondbacks on Thursday.

The Diamondbacks dropped the final three games of a four-game series against the Mets to fall into a tie for the third NL wild-card spot with the Cincinnati Reds (76-72) and San Francisco Giants. The Reds, who visit New York for a weekend series, have the tiebreaker over Arizona by virtue of winning the season series 4-3.

The Reds fell to the Detroit Tigers 8-2 on Thursday. The Giants’ (75-71) game against the Colorado Rockies was postponed because of weather.

The Diamondbacks overcame an eighth-inning deficit to earn a 4-3 win Monday before the Mets won the next three by a combined 25-6. Arizona’s top two starters, Zac Gallen and Merrill Kelly, gave up 14 runs (13 earned) over 10 innings in the final two games of the series.

Kelly (11-7) allowed seven runs and struck out seven in five innings on Thursday.

Brandon Nimmo hit a two-run double in the third for the Mets. Pete Alonso hit an RBI double and DJ Stewart hit a two-run single before McNeil capped the five-run fifth with his second homer of the series, a two-run shot to right.

Francisco Alvarez had an RBI double in the seventh. Arizona backup catcher Seby Zavala got the final two outs of the eighth after Araúz hit a three-run pinch-hit homer.

Senga (11-7) gave up two hits and walked two. He retired 13 straight following Tommy Pham’s two-out single in the first and wriggled out of a bases-loaded jam in the sixth by getting Christian Walker to fly out to center.

The 30-year-old has a 2.95 ERA. Only four rookies in Mets history — Tom Seaver, Jerry Koosman, Jon Matlack and Dwight Gooden — have qualified for the ERA title and posted a sub-3.00 ERA.


Maybelle Blair, who played in the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League — the basis for the movie “A League of Their Own” — received the first Amazin’ Mets Foundation Legacy Award in a pregame ceremony. Alex Cohen, the wife of Mets owner Steve Cohen, presented Blair the award before Blair, 96, threw out a first pitch to Elizabeth Benn, New York’s director of major league operations.

“In my day, we had no opportunity whatsoever to be able to be around baseball, a game that you love so much,” Blair said in a pregame news conference. “And they have opened the door up to us women. We are now executives. We are now owners. We are a little bit of everything in baseball.”

The Mets also showed Blair their women’s locker room, which had a locker with her name above it.

“I absolutely about cried,” Blair said. “You have no idea how I feel. First time in my life I ever felt that. Wonderful to be able to say I had a locker in a major league (clubhouse).”


Diamondbacks: C Gabriel Moreno, whose wife gave birth to the couple’s first child on Monday, returned from the paternity list and exchanged hugs and handshakes with teammates in the clubhouse. … C Jose Herrera was optioned to Triple-A Reno in a corresponding move.

Mets: 3B Brett Baty is day-to-day with a left groin strain suffered in Wednesday’s game. … IF Ronny Mauricio (illness), who didn’t play Wednesday, felt better Thursday but didn’t play.


Diamondbacks: RHP Brandon Pfaadt (1-8, 6.25 ERA) will start Friday’s opener of a pivotal three-game home series against the Chicago Cubs. Arizona took three of four from the Cubs last weekend in Chicago.

Mets: Will get a chance to play spoiler again when LHP David Peterson (3-8, 5.34 ERA) starts the first game of a three-game series against the visiting Cincinnati Reds. RHP Hunter Greene (4-6, 4.43 ERA) will start for the Reds.


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

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