NEW YORK (AP) — David Wright is getting close to coming off the disabled list. The punchless New York Mets sure could use him, if only to make their lineup a little more competitive the rest of the way.
Henderson Alvarez pitched seven innings of four-hit ball and the Mets were shut out for the third time in six days, losing 3-0 to the Miami Marlins in the opener of a doubleheader Saturday.
“We’ve got to make some adjustments,” manager Terry Collins said. “You look at some of the hits that they get on the other side, and they hit the ball the other way. We’re not doing it. I know there’s some guys that got here because they’re power hitters or something, but we’ve still got to use the field better to hit.”
Sidelined since Aug. 3 with a strained right hamstring, Wright went through an extensive workout earlier in the day that included simulated at-bats on the field against bullpen coach Ricky Bones.
Collins said Wright might be ready to return during next week’s home series against San Francisco, but the New York captain didn’t sound as confident.
“As of right now, I think that that’s optimistic,” Wright said. “I think there’s still some more that I need to accomplish before I play in a game.”
Wright remains determined to get back in the lineup before the season ends. As far as the Mets are concerned, he can’t heal fast enough.
New York has scored nine runs and batted .163 while opening 1-5 on an 11-game homestand, its second-to-last of the season. Fielding a depleted lineup filled with youngsters and call-ups, the Mets fell to 9 for 47 (.191) with runners in scoring position over the last nine games.
Donovan Solano got some payback for the Marlins after he was hit by two pitches from Carlos Torres (3-5). Solano launched a home run and made two terrific defensive plays at second base.
“I walked down there and said, ‘My bad, man. I didn’t mean to hit you.’ I don’t know how I hit him twice,” Torres said.
Logan Morrison drove in two runs, one on a line drive off Frank Francisco’s right hand that knocked the oft-injured reliever out of the game. Alvarez (4-4) earned his second win against the Mets this year, handing New York its 11th loss in 14 home games.
New York dropped to 3-10 in September and 6-11 this season against the Marlins, who have the NL’s worst record at 55-92. The defeat ensured the Mets’ fifth straight losing season since Citi Field opened.
Alvarez, who beat New York 3-2 on July 31, struck out five and walked none to help the Marlins win for the 12th time in 40 games.
“He looked great,” Miami manager Mike Redmond said.
Chad Qualls worked a perfect eighth and Steve Cishek struck out three for his 30th save in 32 attempts. He has converted 25 in a row.
Jacob Turner started the nightcap for Miami against winless Daisuke Matsuzaka.
The traditional doubleheader was scheduled to make up a June 7 rainout. With both teams fading at the bottom of the NL East, it promised to be a long day for both players and the hearty fans who showed up on a pleasant late afternoon.
Christian Yelich doubled and stole third in the eighth before Morrison hit a line drive that struck Francisco near his right thumb. Yelich scored as Morrison was tagged out by first baseman Lucas Duda.
Francisco immediately left the game in obvious pain and was sent for X-rays. The team said he had a bruised hand. The right-hander had been out all season following elbow surgery until he was activated last weekend.
“It swelled up even when I was out there,” Collins said. “It swelled up pretty fast and pretty big.”
Torres struck out a career-high eight in six innings and gave up only three hits. Still, he lost his third consecutive start.
NOTES: Mets reliever Jeurys Familia was activated from the disabled list. The rookie right-hander, out since May 9, had surgery June 5 to remove bone spurs from his elbow. During his rehab assignment, Familia pitched three hitless innings with five strikeouts in the South Atlantic League championship series to help Class-A Savannah take home the title.
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