PHILADELPHIA - As the deciding 13th inning rolled on last night and the Mets put the finishing touches on a comeback that was more than four hours in the making, a chant could be heard from the smattering of fans in the stands.
Many of them wore orange and blue. "Sweep! Sweep! Sweep!" they yelled as the Mets beat the Phillies, 9-5, for their seventh straight victory.
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The NL East-leading Mets -- who have scored 73 runs in the seven games -- maintained a 61/2-game lead over the Nationals and completed their first four-game sweep of the Phillies since September 2002.
Daniel Murphy laced a tiebreaking two-run double to leftfield with one out in the 13th. Carlos Torres, who earned the victory with 21/3 innings of scoreless relief, had started the rally with his first big-league hit since 2013, an infield single. He later scored the go-ahead run in what became a four-run inning.
The Mets fell behind 5-0 when Jonathon Niese endured a horrendous five-run third in which he allowed three hits -- including a two-run single by Jeff Francoeur and a two-out, two-run homer by Darin Ruf -- and two walks. But homers by Travis d'Arnaud, Yoenis Cespedes and Kelly Johnson erased that blip, giving the Mets their second comeback from a five-run deficit in the series. "It seems like we're never out of a game," said David Wright, who had two hits.
The Mets, who have a 29-35 mark away from Citi Field, went 8-1 during a nine-game trip that featured a split with the Orioles followed by sweeps of the Rockies and Phillies. In that span, they clubbed 23 homers and averaged 9.1 runs per game.
"They know they can do it," Terry Collins said. "They just again went out and put some good at-bats together. Obviously, the home runs help a lot."
The Mets' 43 homers in August are the most for any single month in club history.
Niese steadied himself after the third. Though he walked five and hit a batter, he lasted six innings, taking just enough pressure off a bullpen that followed with seven scoreless innings.
Murphy went 3-for-6 with a walk, capping a road trip in which he hit .378 with 13 RBIs. "We give ourselves a chance, no doubt about that," he said. "Hopefully, we don't get in the habit of getting down five runs."
With the Nationals beating the Padres, 4-2, in hopes of gaining ground in the division, the Mets needed to work deep into the night to maintain their lead.
They survived a scare in the 10th when pinch hitter Domonic Brown just missed a walk-off homer, buzzing the wrong side of the rightfield foul pole.
The Mets got out of the inning with a bizarre entry into the highlight reel. After Francoeur's hard comebacker ricocheted off Torres' left leg toward first base, Murphy dived to his right to field it, then made a backhanded throw from his knees to hit a sprinting Torres in stride as he covered first base. Torres beat Francoeur by half a step.
In the 12th, Wright made a slick defensive play to strand the potential winning run at third.
"These games have been big for us win-wise, but also knowing that we can overcome a five-run deficit, that we can overcome a six-run deficit," Wright said. "Just go out there and keep plugging away. We've certainly done that on this trip."