Even though this Mets team is undeniably different from its recent predecessors, with more realistic postseason aspirations, the fog of past seasons can be difficult to disperse. So when the Yankees strutted into Citi Field on Tuesday and immediately hammered consecutive homers over the fence, the Bronx portion of a sold-out crowd made its confidence known.
It was loud and it was antagonistic, until the Mets did something they’ve done so infrequently over the decades-long run of this rivalry: They punched back.
Four of the first six Mets batters clubbed extra-base hits in the bottom of the first inning, including a solo homer from Starling Marte and a go-ahead two-run shot by Eduardo Escobar. The resulting lead held through the middle innings and onto the end game, when Edwin Díaz nailed down the final four outs of a 6-3 win over the Yankees.
“I’ve never played in a Major League playoff game before,” first baseman Pete Alonso said, “but if I had to guess, that’s what it would be like.”