NEW YORK — Although Paul DeJong got the winning hit, credit Matt Carpenter with a most unusual called shot.
“Carp said right before the game, ‘We’re about to win this game in 20 minutes,’” DeJong said.
In fact, St. Louis only needed 18.
DeJong grounded an RBI single off Edwin Díaz in the 10th inning, and the Cardinals quickly completed their rally from a night earlier to beat the New York Mets 5-4 Friday.
The game Thursday was suspended after 8 1/2 innings, moments after the Cardinals’ Harrison Bader drove in the tying run with a two-out double off Díaz in the rain.
Play resumed where things left off, and a small crowd at Citi Field saw Carlos Martinez (1-0) pitch a 1-2-3 bottom of the ninth. Díaz (1-4) then jogged out of the bullpen to continue his outing.
“I didn’t even know who was pitching until he ran out there,” DeJong said.
Pinch-hitter Yairo Muñoz led off with a single, stole second and advanced to third on Carpenter’s groundout. DeJong followed by grounding a ball into left field to score Muñoz.
“All it took was one inning,” DeJong said. “It was a good win for us.”
Jordan Hicks pitched perfectly through the bottom of the inning for his 14th save.
The Cardinals gathered around the mound for congratulatory handshakes, then returned to the clubhouse for a quick break before playing the second game of the series, which began as planned at 7:10 p.m.
“I’m going to have a little snack,” DeJong said about 20 minutes after his RBI hit. “A banana and a protein bar or something.”
Rain pounded down Thursday night as New York took a 4-2 lead into the ninth. Umps signaled for the tarp, but first baseman Pete Alonso and other Mets players lobbied hard to keep the game going.
After umpires and both managers met on the field, the grounds crew was waved off and play continued. St. Louis then rallied against Díaz, with Bader driving in the tying run before slipping between second and third. He was thrown out to end the inning.
The field was covered back up after that, and the suspension was announced 50 minutes later.
In another uncommon twist, Alonso logged onto Twitter between games Friday and responded to criticism over his decision to shoo away the tarp. Some suggested that if the Mets had kept quiet, the umps would’ve left the tarp on the field and not taken it off, resulting in a Mets win.
“Are you kidding me? Why are you mad at me for having confidence in my teammates?” he wrote. “I’m a damn competitor and I’ll take my team over any one else any day. A real Mets fan doesn’t talk like that. Clean it up.”
Manager Mickey Callaway concurred, saying “anything can change anything, so no regrets.”
The game resumed at 6:10 p.m. Friday. In an odd scene, there was no anthem, no ceremonial first pitch, no player introductions — none of the hubbub that usually accompanies the start of a big league game. Moments before leading off the bottom of the ninth, Mets slugger Todd Frazier sat on a stool by the on-deck circle, chatting casually with fans. Frazier grounded out to short.
“It was interesting,” DeJong said. “I felt like we brought the energy more so than the fans or the other team. For us, we knew what we had to do.”
Bader finished the first game with three hits. DeJong also homered and is now 25 for 71 (.352) against the Mets with 17 extra-base hits.
AN OK K
Mets catcher Wilson Ramos had a most memorable strikeout Thursday night, going down looking in the fourth moments after his wife, Yely, surprised him with the news that she’s pregnant with the couple’s third child. She ran down the steps near the on-deck circle holding a sign saying “We’re pregnant! Wilson, this is your 3rd child. We love you!”
Ramos chuckled between practice swings, then tried to focus on his at-bat. He was struck out by Jack Flaherty.
“I don’t like putting another thing in my head when I go to the plate, but that moment made me so excited,” Ramos said. “I tried to hit a homer or do something good. I got a strikeout, nothing good. But I was still happy for the rest of the game.”
Cardinals: RHP Dominic Leone was recalled from Triple-A Memphis to be the 26th man for the second game.
Mets: RHP Taylor Bashlor was brought up from Triple-A Syracuse to be New York’s 26th man.
Cardinals RHP Daniel Ponce de Leon (0-0, 1.80) starts in place of injured Adam Wainwright. LHP Steven Matz (5-4, 3.88) is up for the Mets.
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