Andrew McCutchen entered as a mid-game replacement and hit a go-ahead, two-run home run to help the Philadelphia Phillies beat the New York Mets 6-2 on Sunday and complete a three-game sweep.
McCutchen was hitting just. 180 this season with no homers and got the day off against Mets starter Rick Porcello (1-3). Jay Bruce got the start in left field but was pulled in the fourth inning. There was no explanation why Bruce was yanked.
Enter McCutchen, exit home run.
The Phillies tied the game at 2 in the sixth on rookie Alec Bohm’s opposite-field double to right that scored J.T. Realmuto. McCutchen, batting in Bruce’s spot, hit the first pitch he saw into the left field fan cutouts for a 4-2 lead.
The Phillies (8-9) moved within a game of .500 following the sweep of their NL East rival and found their footing as they head out on a 10-game road trip. The Phillies have played only one road game this season.
Zack Wheeler (3-0) gave up two runs and struck out four over seven solid innings to give the Phillies yet another quality start in his first appearance against his former team. Aaron Nola tossed seven scoreless innings on Saturday, and only the worst bullpen in baseball has kept the Phillies from making a serious run so far at the East.
Rhys Hoskins, whose three-RBI double on Saturday showed he’s close to breaking out of a slump, added a run-scoring single in the first for a 1-0 lead.
The Mets scored twice in the fourth off Wheeler on Luis Guillorme’s two-RBI single. The Mets killed a couple of rallies with baserunning blunders, notably when Andres Gimenez was thrown out at home to end the second.
The Phillies added two more runs in the seventh to secure the sweep.
Mets slugger Pete Alonso was out of the starting lineup after a slow start to the season with just three homers, 11 RBIs and a .214 average. Alonso burst onto the scene last year with 53 homers and won the NL Rookie of the Year.
“He’s been on and off,” Mets manager Luis Rojas said. “He’s about to break out and be that guy and all of a sudden, he’s off.”
RHP Franklyn Kilome was recalled from the team’s alternate training site and INF Brian Dozier was designated for assignment.
PHILLIES: OF Roman Quinn was placed on the IL. The Phillies have recalled OF Kyle Garlick from Lehigh Valley. ... 2B Jean Segura left the game in the seventh after he collided with Mets 1B Dominic Smith and reached on an error.
With the Phillies set to hit the road for the next 11 days, their parking lot has been turned into a concert stage. AJR, The Struts and Mt. Joy are among the bands that will play drive-in concerts in the parking lots while fans listen in their cars.
The Mets open a series with the Marlins on Monday and send RHP Robert Gsellman (0-0, 9.00 ERA) to the mound against RHP Jordan Yamamoto (0-0, 9.82 ERA).
After playing just one road game all season, the Phillies finally pack their bags and head to Boston to start a series on Tuesday. They haven’t decided on a starter. Boston sends RHP Zack Godley (0-2, 8.16 ERA) to the mound.