NEW YORK (AP) — Pete Alonso homered twice to become the second player in Mets history with four 30-homer seasons, leading retooling New York to a 5-1 victory over the Washington Nationals on Friday night.
The Mets won their second straight a little less than 24 hours after sending closer David Robertson to Miami for two rookie-ball prospects — signifying a trade deadline selloff. New York opened the season with a record $343 million payroll, but entered Friday seven games out of a wild-card spot.
Alonso hit a 453-foot, three-run homer into the second deck in left field off MacKenzie Gore (6-8) in the fifth inning, and added a two-run, 423-foot homer to center in the seventh off Rico Garcia.
The second homer was the 30th of the season for Alonso, who joined Mike Piazza as the only players with four 30-homer seasons for the Mets. The only season in which Alonso has not reached 30 homers was during the pandemic-shortened 2020 campaign, when he hit 16 homers in 57 games.
The two-homer game was the second in the last four games for Alonso, who had just four homers in 30 games from June 7 through July 23 — a span that included a stint on the injured list with a bruised left wrist.
Max Scherzer (9-4) allowed six hits and struck out seven in seven solid innings. Scherzer carried a shutout into the seventh, when Luis García hit a leadoff homer.
Adam Ottavino pitched the eighth, and Brooks Raley worked the ninth.
Gore gave up three runs in five innings.
CLOSER BY COMMITTEE?
Mets manager Buck Showalter said he wasn’t sure who would replace Robertson as the Mets’ primary closer. Right-handers Ottavino (six saves) and Drew Smith (two saves) and left-hander Raley (two saves) have combined for the 10 saves that weren’t earned by Robertson.
“All options are on the table,” Showalter said. “Never overlook an orchard while searching for a rose. You might be surprised who might emerge.”
Showalter said Robertson’s departure wouldn’t change the timetable for Edwin Díaz, who had 32 saves and posted a 1.31 ERA last season but will likely miss the season after tearing the patella tendon in the World Baseball Classic. Díaz is regularly throwing from 150 feet.
“I don’t see us speeding up the process, I can tell you that,” Showalter said.
FEW FAMILIAR FACES
Just three players on the Nationals’ 25-man roster Friday were with the team when Scherzer made his last start for the team in 2021 — pitchers Patrick Corbin and Kyle Finnegan and infielder Luis García.
Nationals: 3B Jeimer Candelario, who was the DH Friday, appeared to hurt his left shoulder while trying to leg out a double in the eighth inning.
Mets: To replace Robertson on the active roster, the Mets recalled RHP Reed Garrett from Triple-A Syracuse.
LHP Corbin (6-11, 5.01 ERA) will start for the Nationals against RHP Carlos Carrasco (3-4, 5.82 ERA) in the third game of the four-game series Saturday night. Corbin is 1-2 with a 5.70 ERA in four starts this month while Carrasco is 1-1 with a 5.40 ERA in three starts.