Chris Young, Mets rough up Kazmir, Athletics 10-1
NEW YORK (AP) — Travis d’Arnaud said he flashed a big grin when he saw Citi Field for the first time in two weeks. He was downright giddy when he got a “car wash” several hours later.
D’Arnaud hit a three-run shot in his return from a demotion, slumping outfielder Chris Young homered twice and the New York Mets roughed up Scott Kazmir and the Oakland Athletics 10-1 on Tuesday night for their season high-tying third straight win.
“They were all just waving their towels so I winged it,” d’Arnaud said of prancing through the dugout receiving line dubbed the car wash. “It was fun.”
Young homered off Kazmir (9-3) in the second, four pitches after Curtis Granderson hit a two-run drive for the Mets first back-to back homers since Sept. 14. Young also connected off failed closer Jim Johnson in the fifth for only the Mets’ fifth four-homer game at Citi Field since it opened in 2009, according to STATS.
Manager Terry Collins earlier Tuesday said he has been talking with Young about his role and getting him on track amid rumors that Young, batting .201 coming in, was close to being cut despite having signed a one-year, $7.25 million contract in the offseason.
“Those decisions aren’t in your hands,” Young said. “You stressing about it is not going to help the situation.”
Granderson and David Wright had RBI groundouts, and Daniel Murphy added a run-scoring single for the Mets, who scored at least 10 runs in consecutive games for the first time since June 28-29, 2011, in Detroit. They beat Miami 11-5 on Sunday to end a road trip with two straight wins and a new celebration started by Granderson.
After each homer on Tuesday, the player being feted trotted through two parallel lines of white towel-flailing teammates in the dugout. They then would turn around and do it again.
“Today (Zack) Wheeler started the car wash where everyone gets the towel waving and you go through the car wash ... and after you finished you got to get dried off so you come back through,” Granderson said. “It’s a good thing to keep it as much fun as possible in the dugout.”
Bartolo Colon (8-5) shut down the team that didn’t want him back this year despite an 18-win season, pitching four-hit ball for eight innings against the AL West leaders.
A first-round draft pick by New York in 2002 but sent to Tampa Bay in a very unpopular trade two years later, Kazmir flopped in his first start ever in Queens.
“I’ve never played in Shea Stadium. I’d never played in Citi Field so it’s not really coming back for me,” Kazmir said.
He entered with the AL’s best ERA (2.08) and on a four-game winning streak, but was out after just three innings and a season-high seven runs. His ERA rose to 2.66.
Kazmir went 22 starts without giving up more than one homer in a game since Aug. 18, with Cleveland.
“It was a performance that we haven’t seen,” A’s manager Bob Melvin said, “so for me it just looked like some balls were up in the zone and he wasn’t locating like he normally does.”
Signed by the Mets 10 days after the A’s inked Kazmir in December, Colon won his sixth straight decision. He also singled for his second straight game, much to the delight of the 25,751 in attendance.
Colon only faced trouble in the first when Yoenis Cespedes followed Brandon Moss’ single with a double to the wall in center field for the early lead.
Colon gave up a hit to Cespedes in the fourth and another single in the fifth to Coco Crisp, but he otherwise cruised through the best run-producing lineup in the majors.
“It feels really good in particular because it’s a team like the Oakland A’s, which for me right now is the No. 1 team,” Colon said through a translator.
D’Arnaud was recalled after a two-week stint in Triple-A Las Vegas. The Mets’ catcher of the future was hitting .180 when he was sent down. He struck out in the second but connected in the third.
NOTES: Wright tied a career high with an RBI in his seventh straight game. ... The Mets said 1B coach Tom Goodwin was not with the team because of “a personal family matter.” Bench coach Bob Geren was at first base and senior adivser Guy Conti took Geren’s spot on the bench. ... The A’s placed 1B Kyle Blanks on the 15-day DL with a left calf strain. ... First base umpire Joe West was hit in the chest by a line drive but he barely flinched. ... Up next: Oakland LHP Brad Mills (0-0) vs. Wheeler (3-7).