Bronx, NY (SportsNetwork.com) – Alex Rodriguez hit a solo homer and drove in two runs as the New York Yankees beat the Mets 6-4 in the rubber match of a three-game series.
Gregorio Petit, Brett Gardner and Chris Young had one RBI apiece for the Yankees, who improved to 11-8 on the young season.
Nathan Eovaldi allowed four runs on seven hits while striking out six over 4 1/3 innings. Chasen Shreve (1-0) got the final two outs in the fifth.
Former Yankee Curtis Granderson hit a solo homer for the Mets, who entered this weekend series on an 11-game winning streak. Daniel Murphy went 2-for-3 with two RBI.
Jon Niese (2-1) gave up six runs — four earned — on eight hits over five innings for the Mets, who committed four errors on Sunday.
Granderson led off the game with a homer to right-center field. Juan Lagares followed with a single, moved to second when Michael Cuddyer grounded out and raced home on Murphy’s double to right.
Rodriguez answered with a solo shot to right-center field in the bottom half. He now has 659 career home runs, leaving him one shy of tying Willie Mays for fourth on baseball’s all-time home run leaderboard.
“Willie was my father’s favorite player,” Rodriguez said. “I remember hearing about Willie Mays and Mickey Mantle all the time. He’s one of my heroes.”
The Yankees tacked on four runs in the second. John Ryan Murphy doubled and crossed the plate on Petit’s two-out double to left. Petit then scored on Gardner’s double to right. Young added a run-scoring single before Rodriguez hit an RBI double to left. Rodriguez was thrown out while trying to make it to third on Cuddyer’s throwing error.
“Tonight wasn’t pretty,” Cuddyer said. “It was obviously, by far, the worst game we have played.”
The Mets responded with two runs in the third. Lucas Duda hit a two-out single and raced home on Cuddyer’s double to left. Daniel Murphy’s RBI double to left-center field cut the gap to 5-4.
The Yankees put another run on the board in the fifth. Gardner beat out an infield single following a successful challenge from the Yankees. Young reached on Daniel Murphy’s fielding error, which moved Gardner to third. Gardner then scored when Rodriguez grounded into a fielder’s choice.
Andrew Miller tossed a scoreless ninth to pick up his seventh save of the season.
Mets shortstop Wilmer Flores had an eight-game hitting streak snapped … The Mets went 2-for-5 with runners in scoring position and stranded five … The Yankees welcome the Rays to town for a three-game series starting Monday, while the Mets start a three-game series in Miami on Monday.