Johnathan Rodriguez drives in go-ahead run for 1st major league hit, Guardians beat Mets 6-3

CLEVELAND -- — Johnathan Rodriguez singled home David Fry in the seventh inning for his first major league hit, driving in the go-ahead run for the Cleveland Guardians in a 6-3 victory over the New York Mets on Wednesday.

Rodriguez, playing in his second game since being recalled from Triple-A Columbus two days earlier, slapped a grounder through the right side of the infield off Reed Garrett (5-1) to snap a 3-all tie.

“My focus was to try to hit the ball hard, just to try to help the team,” Rodriguez said through an interpreter. “I was ready to get the job done.”

The 24-year-old right fielder also was a hero in the first, picking up a tiny black bird that landed near him. He cradled it in his mitt before delivering it to a bullpen attendant, who safely escorted it out of the ballpark.

“I think it was a baby, so I put it in my glove,” Rodriguez said. “It was a little lost. I didn’t want to see it get hurt.”

The AL Central-leading Guardians, who trailed 3-0 going into the sixth, moved into a tie for the second-best record in the majors at 33-17. Cleveland extended its winning streak to a season-high six and swept the Mets for the first time as a franchise.

José Ramírez and Kyle Manzardo tacked on RBI doubles in the eighth against Adam Ottavino. Andrés Giménez began the comeback with a three-run, tying homer in the sixth off New York starter Jose Quintana.

“In my first two at-bats I was seeing everything, so I was kind of ready for it,” Giménez said. “Knowing that we could get something going gave us the energy to do what we knew we could do.”

Hunter Gaddis (3-1) worked 1 1/3 innings for the win and rookie Cade Smith picked up his first save. All-Star closer Emmanuel Clase was unavailable after pitching the previous three days.

“I thought Cade was throwing 120 (mph),” catcher Austin Hedges said. “When he’s throwing 98-plus, that’s as good of a fastball as I’ve caught.”

The Mets had gone in front on homers by Pete Alonso in the first, Jeff McNeil in the second and Harrison Bader in the fourth — all against right-hander Triston McKenzie, who lasted five innings in his sixth consecutive winless start.

New York dropped a season-high seven games below .500 at 21-28.

“There is always a sense of urgency because every game matters,” Mets manager Carlos Mendoza said. “Obviously, getting swept in these three games here is tough. We’ve got some work to do, but I’m pretty confident the guys will continue to work.”

Quintana, who only allowed two baserunners in the first five innings, exited after the sixth. The left-hander struck out four without a walk.

A downpour arrived during the middle of the seventh, but lasted less than a minute before sunny skies returned.


Mets: C Francisco Alvarez (left thumb surgery), who has been on the injured list since April 20, will take batting practice this weekend at Citi Field. Mendoza said Alvarez could return in June, but may have to wear a splint “moving forward.”

Guardians: RHP James Karinchak (right shoulder inflammation) was placed on the IL on March 28, but isn’t close to going on a minor league rehab assignment. “He’s still just on his throwing progression,” manager Stephen Vogt said.


Mets: RHP Christian Scott (0-2, 4.32 ERA) pitches against San Francisco in the opener of a three-game home series Friday. Scott made his major league debut at Tampa Bay on May 4.

Guardians: LHP Logan Allen (5-2, 4.91 ERA) works the first of a three-game set at the Los Angeles Angels on Friday. Allen has tossed 12 scoreless innings in winning his last two starts.