MIAMI (AP) — Maybe it was the breather Giancarlo Stanton requested and received, or the move one spot down in the batting order that rejuvenated his home run swing.
Perhaps it was Mets pitching.
Stanton hit his 55th homer — and his first in nine days — while driving in four runs to help the Miami Marlins beat New York 13-1 Monday night.
Batting third for the first time this year, Stanton hit a three-run line drive into the home run sculpture at Marlins Park in the fourth inning against struggling right-hander Matt Harvey (5-6). With that, the MLB home run leader ended a drought of 29 at-bats without one.
“I thought he looked better, obviously,” manager Don Mattingly said.
Stanton came into the game batting .147 in his previous 19 games. He has been rested and held out of the starting lineup three times in the past 10 games, including Sunday, when he asked to sit out.
The break helped, he said.
“For sure, at this point,” Stanton said. “Early in the year when you have a day off, you kind of feel sluggish afterward. With all the miles we’ve tallied up through the year, it feels good to have them now.”
The Marlins, back home after a dismal trip extended by three games due to Hurricane Irma, won for only the fourth time in the past 21 games.
“It felt like we’ve been on the road for three weeks,” Stanton said.
His homer total is the highest since Ryan Howard hit 58 in 2006. He added a run-scoring single in Miami’s seven-run fifth.
Every Miami starter got a hit, and seven New York pitchers combined to allow 19 hits.
Marcell Ozuna had four hits, including his 34th home run . Dee Gordon also had four hits, among them a two-run triple, and earned his 55th stolen base. Ichiro Suzuki added two hits and an RBI, while rookie Brian Anderson drove in two runs with his first career triple.
“We got beat up a little bit on the road trip,” he said. “It’s nice to get back home and do some laundry and win a game.”
Harvey allowed seven runs and 12 hits in four-plus innings. He has given up 18 homers in 84 2/3 innings this year, and his ERA is 6.59.
“There’s nothing to say,” the former Mets ace told reporters. “Terrible. It’s not fun. There’s no reason for questions. There are no answers.”
In four starts since returning from a right shoulder injury that sidelined him for 2½ months, the right-hander has an ERA of 13.19 while allowing 32 hits in 14 1/3 innings. Manager Terry Collins said the biggest problem is that Harvey’s slider has been ineffective.
“When he was on top of his game, he had three swing-and-miss pitches,” Collins said. “Right now he doesn’t have that.”
Collins said he plans for Harvey to make his final starts as scheduled. Harvey said that’s fine with him.
“You have to keep pushing and go back out there and do everything you can to be better,” Harvey said. “Obviously if that’s not working, then you have to figure something else out.”
Mets: RHP Noah Syndergaard (lat muscle) threw 39 pitches in a simulated game and hopes to make one or two starts before the season ends, but knows he’s racing the clock. “I don’t want to try to rush it and jump back out there too early,” he said. “It’s a serious injury. I’ve heard a lot of stories about people reinjuring themselves. I want to make sure that doesn’t happen.”
RHP Seth Lugo (6-5, 5.21) is scheduled to start Tuesday night for the Mets against RHP Odrisamer Despaigne (0-3, 4.35). Lugo is 3-0 in four career starts against the Marlins.
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