Flores, Mets, walk-off tops Brew­ers 3-2 for 12-2 start

The Record (Troy, NY) - - SPORTS - By Ronald Blum

NEWYORK » Wilmer Flores hit a game-win­ning home run with two outs in the bot­tom of the ninth in­ning and the New York Mets beat the Mil­wau­kee Brew­ers 3-2 on Sun­day to im­prove the best start in team his­tory to 12-2.

Noah Syn­der­gaard struck out eight bat­ters in a row, two shy of Tom Seaver’s ma­jor league record, and Bran­don Nimmo fin­ished a dou­ble shy of the cy­cle. Nimmo con­nected for a ty­ing home run against Tay­lor Wil­liams lead­ing off the sixth on a cold, blus­tery af­ter­noon at Citi Field.

“We’re all ready to get out of here,” a smil­ing Flores said dur­ing a postgame in­ter­view on the field, just be­fore get­ting doused by a team­mate.

Flores broke a 2-all tie with a drive over the left- cen­ter wall against Matt Al­bers (2-1) for his sec­ond home run this year. New York has opened a sea­son with five straight se­ries wins for the first time.

Jeurys Fa­milia (1- 0) worked around a walk in a hit­less ninth.

Syn­der­gaard’s long, blond hair was flap­ping in the wind on a day when at­ten­dance ap­peared to be less than half the an­nounced crowd of 26,036. It was 42 de­grees at game time on Jackie Robin­son Day, when all play­ers wore Robin­son’s No. 42.

Syn­der­gaard al­lowed an un­earned run and two hits in 5 1/3 in­nings, with 11 strikeouts and one walk.

Mets rookie man­ager Mickey Call­away faced sec­ond-guess­ing af­ter Jay Bruce pinch hit for rookie catcher To­mas Nido and was in­ten­tion­ally walked to load the bases, and Syn­der­gaard fol­lowed with an in­field popup on the first pitch. Syn­der­gaard had al­lowed one hit through five score­less in­nings but had thrown 90 pitches.

Je­sus Aguilar sin­gled with one out in the sixth, and Robert Gsell­man re­lieved. Mil­wau­kee loaded when bases when third base­man Todd Fra­zier al­lowed Domingo San­tana’s two- out grounder to roll un­der his glove for in­field hit, and took a 2-1 lead when short­stop Amed Rosario bounced a throw for a two-run er­ror af­ter mak­ing a slid­ing stop on Her­nan Perez’s grounder. Gsell­man struck out Oswaldo Ar­cia, who slammed his bat.

Left-han­der Jerry Blevins got Travis Shaw to hit an in­ning- end­ing grounder that left the bases loaded in the seventh.

Another player got hurt on the banged- up Brew­ers. Eric Thames winced af­ter tak­ing a 2-2 pitch in the first in­ning and limped back to the dugout. The first base­man was re­moved in the mid­dle of the third af­ter strik­ing out twice, and the Brew­ers said he strained a left ad­duc­tor mus­cle. Mil­wau­kee’s start­ing lineup al­ready was mi­nus catcher Manny Pina and out­field­ers Ryan Braun and Chris­tian Yelich.

Many play­ers wore bal­a­clavas, but Mil­wau­kee sec­ond base­man Jonathan Vil­lar made the odd de­ci­sion to wear one while play­ing in short sleeves but with a sweat shirt un­der his jersey that had a pouch to keep his hands warm.

Fra­zier hit an RBI sin­gle in the first but the Mets stranded 11 run­ners in the first five in­nings and led only 1- 0.

Syn­der­gaard was work­ing on a no-hit bid and had struck out eight in a row be­fore Perez sin­gled to left on a 1-2 pitch lead­ing off the fifth. Perez ad­vanced on a ground­out and stole third, and Jett Bandy took a called third strike on a pitch that ap­peared to be low. Bandy barked at plate um­pire Hunter Wen­del­st­edt, and man­ager Craig Coun­sell came out to pro­tect his only healthy catcher, lead­ing to an ejec­tion.

KATHY WILLENS - THE AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS

New York Mets left fielder Yoe­nis Ce­s­pedes, right, douses team­mate Wilmer Flores af­ter Flores hit a ninth-in­ning walkoff home run in a base­ball game against the Mil­wau­kee Brew­ers, Sun­day, April 15, 2018, in New York.

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