- Associated Press - Wednesday, September 2, 2020

BALTIMORE (AP) - Michael Conforto set the tone with a two-run homer in the first inning, and the New York Mets followed his lead to a much-needed victory.

Conforto went 4 for 5 with a homer and five RBIs, Pete Alonso hit a lengthy solo shot and the Mets beat the Baltimore Orioles 9-4 Wednesday to snap a five-game losing streak.

Conforto matched his career high in hits, starting with a drive to left that provided New York with a 2-0 lead. He followed with RBI doubles in the fifth and seventh, and topped it off with a run-scoring single in the eighth.

“His consistency and approach are good,” manager Luis Rojas said. “He’s looking for a certain pitch, getting it and not missing it.”

Conforto’s first double gave New York the lead for good at 3-2, and the Mets padded the advantage as part of a 14-hit attack.

Alonso had just one hit, but it was a whopper. His sixth-inning drive off John Means (0-3) was only the fifth in the history of Camden Yards to reach the second deck in left field.

The Mets also got some decent pitching to earn a split of the two-game series and end a skid that matched their longest of the season. David Peterson (4-1) threw four innings of two-hit relief before giving way in the eighth to Miguel Castro, obtained in a trade with Baltimore on Monday.

“He threw really well,” Rojas said of Peterson. “Petey came in and did a really good job. He gave us four strong innings there, and we needed it.”

Todd Frazier started at third base and went 0 for 5 in his return to the Mets. Obtained from Texas prior to Monday’s trade deadline, Frazier totaled 39 home runs and 126 RBIs with New York in 2018 and 2019.

Facing Baltimore for the first time in his eight-year career, Mets starter Michael Wacha gave up two runs in three innings. His most lamentable mistake came in the second, when he walked Andrew Valazquez to load the bases before hitting Cedric Mullins with an 0-2 pitch.

“Just not a good performance by me in the second inning,” Wacha said. “The walk to the 9-hole and then the hit by pitch kind of (ticked) me off.”

Wacha left after a solid third inning, and Peterson sailed from there.

“We squandered some offensive opportunities early to get the lead there,” Orioles manager Brandon Hyde noted. “We had the right guys up. Then Peterson came in and shut us down completely.”

Means, an All-Star in 2019, has gone six starts without a win this year. He allowed four runs and eight hits in 5 1/3 innings but lowered his ERA to 8.10.

“The fastball command was horrible,” the left-hander said. “I think that’s the worst fastball command I’ve ever had. Other than that, my body feels good and I’m confident.”


Mets center fielder Jake Marisnick slammed into the wall in the second inning chasing down a drive by Pedro Severino. The ball and Marisnick bounced hard off the barrier and the outfielder’s cap went flying. Severino ended up with his first career triple and Marisnick remained in the game.


The Mets activated three players obtained before Monday’s trade deadline: Frazier, catcher Robinson Chirinos (from Texas) and Castro.

To make room on the roster, New York optioned catcher Ali Sánchez and right-handers Ariel Jurado and Franklyn Kilome to its alternate site.


Mets: 3B J.D. Davis started at DH, in part because he’s still nursing a sore hip but mostly because manager Luis Rojas wanted to get a look at Frazier in the field. … Rojas said he has “no idea” how long LHP Steven Matz (shoulder) and RH reliever Dellin Betances (lat tightness) will be out. Both went on the injured list Aug. 30.

Orioles: First baseman Renato Núñez hurt his hamstring during the game and is day-to-day, Hyde said. … 2B Hanser Alberto missed a second straight game with a jammed knee. The injury occurred Monday against Toronto.


Mets: Typical of this strange season, the Mets host the Yankees on Thursday in a one-game series.

Orioles: After taking Thursday off, Baltimore launches a four-game series against the visiting Yankees with a doubleheader Friday night.


More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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