By MIKE FITZPATRICK AP Baseball Writer
NEW YORK (AP) _ Wilmer Flores hit a solo home run with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning, and the New York Mets rallied from an early five-run deficit to beat the Oakland Athletics 6-5 Saturday night for their fourth consecutive victory.
Pinch-hitter Lucas Duda delivered a tying single with two outs in the eighth off left-hander Daniel Coulombe. Jay Bruce hit a two-run homer in the sixth to begin New York’s comeback, and Jose Reyes tripled twice.
Flores connected on a 96 mph fastball from Simon Castro (0-1), sending a line drive to left field for the second game-ending homer of his career. That sent a frenzied crowd of 39,629 home happy _ hours after fans lined up early in the heat outside Citi Field to get their Noah Syndergaard as Thor bobbleheads.
Matt Joyce hit a leadoff home run and Matt Chapman added a prodigious shot for Oakland, which scored four in the first off struggling Mets starter Zack Wheeler.
Sean Manaea took a shutout into the sixth but then wilted after throwing a career-high 115 pitches Sunday in his previous start, a win against Cleveland.
Hansel Robles (6-1) tossed a hitless inning to win for the second straight day.
MAN ON THE MOVE
With Mets second baseman Neil Walker nearing a return from the disabled list, perhaps Monday in San Diego, Asdrubal Cabrera made his first major league start at third and played flawless defense after working out at the position once. Cabrera’s only previous appearance at the hot corner came during his rookie season in 2007 with Cleveland. “He’s a middle infielder who’s going to play third base. Got great hands, great arm. He’ll be fine,” manager Terry Collins said. Cabrera initially balked at shifting from shortstop to second when he came off the DL about a month ago.
Athletics: Ryon Healy had a pinch-hit single after getting hit near the left temple by a bad-hop grounder Friday night. Healy went through the concussion protocol and was cleared, manager Bob Melvin said. … Melvin said he would have news after the game regarding RHP Jharel Cotton, on the DL since July 4 with a blister on his right thumb. Cotton threw a bullpen Friday. Oakland needs a starter for Monday night at Toronto. … INF-OF Chad Pinder (strained left hamstring) homered Friday on his rehab assignment with Triple-A Nashville and could come off the DL when Oakland begins a homestand next weekend. “That’s kind of the target area,” Melvin said.
Mets: Walker (left hamstring) went 1 for 3 with Triple-A Las Vegas at Memphis in the first game of rehab assignment. The switch-hitter has been on the DL since June 15. … LHP Josh Smoker threw a scoreless sixth in his first outing since coming off the disabled list Thursday. Smoker had been sidelined since June 14 with a strained left shoulder.
Oakland rookie right-hander Daniel Gossett (1-5, 5.79 ERA) makes his eighth career start in Sunday’s series finale against RHP Rafael Montero (1-6, 5.40). Gossett has given up 10 homers in 37 1/3 innings after yielding only four in 60 2/3 innings at Triple-A.
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