Rapid Reaction: Mets 7, Marlins 1

July, 11, 2014
Jul 11
NEW YORK -- First Miami loses LeBron. And now this?

Zack Wheeler continued his career domination of the Miami Marlins and Lucas Duda and David Wright contributed two-run homers as the Mets won Friday’s series opener 7-1 at Citi Field.

With losses by division co-leaders Atlanta and Washington, the Mets (43-50) moved within seven games of first place, their closest proximity since June 29.

Mike Stobe/Getty ImagesDavid Wright greets Lucas Duda at the plate after Duda's two-run homer in the third gave the Mets a 4-0 lead.

Wheeler’s final line in a 114-pitch effort: 6.2 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 6 K. He improved to 2-0 with a 1.04 ERA in five career starts against Miami.

Wheeler has allowed one run and pitched into the seventh inning in each of his past three starts to shave his season ERA to 3.90.

This time, he took a scoreless effort into the fifth, when Christian Yelich's two-out single plated Jarrod Saltalamacchia and pulled the Marlins within 4-1 for the lone damage against him.

To that point, Wheeler had help in the field to keep Miami scoreless.

After singling to lead off the fourth, Donovan Solano was thrown out trying to score from first base on Casey McGehee's one-out double courtesy of a relay from Kirk Nieuwenhuis to Ruben Tejada to Travis d'Arnaud.

McGehee, after reaching third base with two outs, was stranded when Garrett Jones was retired at first base on a bunt attempt to the third-base side that Wheeler quickly recovered.

Snapped: The Mets beat one of baseball’s hottest pitchers. Henderson Alvarez entered Friday’s outing with a 1.04 ERA since May 22. Only Clayton Kershaw (0.97) had a better ERA in the majors during that span. Alvarez (5 IP, 6 ER) had not allowed more than two runs in any of those nine starts. The Marlins had been unbeaten in Alvarez’s past 10 outings, the longest streak in franchise history for one starting pitcher.

Alvarez also entered the outing with an 18 1/3-inning scoreless streak against the Mets.

Juan Lagares had a two-out double in the second and Tejada followed with an RBI single. Wheeler then made it 2-0 with a double that plated Tejada. An inning later, after Wright singled for the second time in the game, Duda launched a two-run homer into the upper deck in right field for a 4-0 lead. Wright’s two-run homer in the fifth made it 6-1.

Wright had hits in all three at-bats against Alvarez and finished the game 4-for-4. The captain now is a lifetime 9-for-19 against Alvarez.

Lean on me: Heavily used Jeurys Familia pitched the ninth despite the Mets leading by six runs.

What’s next: Daisuke Matsuzaka (3-3, 3.82 ERA) opposes right-hander Tom Koehler (6-7, 3.98) at 4:10 p.m. Saturday.
Adam Rubin has covered the Mets since 2003. He's a graduate of Mepham High School on Long Island and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He joined ESPNNewYork after spending 10 years at the New York Daily News.
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Daniel Murphy
.289 9 57 79
HRL. Duda 30
RBIL. Duda 92
RD. Murphy 79
OPSL. Duda .830
WB. Colon 15
ERAJ. Niese 3.40
SOZ. Wheeler 187