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Yankees blow two leads in crushing loss to Mets

Yankees relief pitcher Aroldis Chapman delivers against the

Yankees relief pitcher Aroldis Chapman delivers against the New York Mets during the ninth inning of an MLB game at Citi Field on Thursday. Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

Aroldis Chapman appealed his three-game suspension for throwing a ball near the head of a Tampa Bay batter on Tuesday night, so he was available to try to close out a one-run win for the Yankees against the Mets at Citi Field on Thursday.

Unfortunately for the Yankees, Chapman allowed a tying home run by J.D. Davis on an 0-and-2 pitch with one out in the ninth. On to extra innings, with a runner on second to start.

After the Yankees didn’t score in the top of the 10th, thanks in part to a baserunning blunder by Tyler Wade, the Mets ended the game in the bottom half on Pete Alonso’s leadoff two-run homer.

That’s right. A leadoff two-run homer. 2020, y’all.

The Yankees’ 9-7 defeat was a crusher and ended the Subway Series in a 3-3 tie.

Yankees reliever Albert Abreu, in his second big-league outing, entered the game in the 10th with Dominic Smith on second. The drama didn’t last long as Alonso sent Abreu’s second pitch through heavy raindrops into the empty leftfield stands for a 404-foot walk-off homer.

The Yankees blew leads of 4-0 and 7-4 in the final regular-season matchup of New York’s teams for 2020. “I think it was one of those baseball days,” starter J.A. Happ said. “We’ve got to get over it and move on.”

The Yankees, who have lost 10 of 14, won’t have long to ruminate on their fate. They left after the game to play a doubleheader on Friday in Baltimore.

  

The ninth inning started with the Yankees holding a 7-6 lead. Chapman walked Jeff McNeil, who was replaced by pinch runner Billy Hamilton.

Hamilton took off for second as Chapman tried to pick him off. He was called for a balk, but Hamilton would’ve beaten the throw to second anyway.

On the next pitch, Hamilton was thrown out by Kyle Higashioka trying to steal third. Making the first out at third when trailing by a run? A huge break for the Yankees . . . until Davis tied it with a 426-foot blast to center.

Chapman also had allowed a walk-off two-run homer by the Mets’ Amed Rosario in Game 2 of a doubleheader last Friday.

The Yankees started the top of the 10th with Wade on second. But that advantage was negated when he was doubled off second on DJ LeMahieu’s liner to right.

“That can’t happen,” Wade said. “I just tried to be aggressive on a ball I thought was hit a little bit softer and I’ve got to do a better job of not turning my back on that ball right there.”

The Yankees took a 4-0 lead in the second against Robert Gsellman. Wade drove in the first run with a bases-loaded single, LeMahieu made it 2-0 with a sacrifice fly and Luke Voit laced a two-run double to left to give Happ a four-run advantage.

The Mets got on the board in the bottom of the second when Todd Frazier homered to right. They tied the score with three two-out runs in the fourth as manager Aaron Boone had no choice but to stick with the laboring Happ.

The Yankees had gotten two-thirds of an inning from starter Jordan Montgomery in a 5-3 loss to the Rays on Wednesday night. With the doubleheader in Baltimore looming on Friday, Boone had to get length out of Happ.

With a runner on third and one out, Happ struck out Alonso but then allowed four consecutive hits as the Mets tied the score at 4. Jake Marisnick had an RBI double, Rosario drove in a run with a single, Robinson Chirinos singled and McNeil drove in the tying run with a single.

In the seventh, Gio Urshela drove in the tiebreaking run with a single off Miguel Castro. Brett Gardner drove in an insurance run with a double under Alonso’s glove.

Aaron Hicks added an RBI single in the eighth to make it 7-4.

The Mets pulled to within 7-6 in the eighth on Rosario’s two-out, two-run single off Zack Britton.

Then the ninth and 10th innings happened.

“I see the team as fine,” Chapman said through an interpreter. “We have a lot of talent and we have a lot of really good players. We’re going through a tough moment and I understand it’s a short season — there’s not a lot of time — but as far as our team, I think we should be able to be fine.”

New York Sports