SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Kris Bryant hit two home runs, Kevin Gausman set a career high for wins and the San Francisco Giants beat the New York Mets 7-5 on Monday night.
Brandon Crawford had four hits to continue his surge at the plate over the past month. San Francisco’s All-Star shortstop, who signed a $32 million, two-year contract last week, is hitting .427 over his last 28 games.
Pinch-hitter Brandon Belt also homered and Wilmer Flores added two hits and an RBI against his original team. The surprising Giants have won 16 of 21 and boast the best record in the majors at 77-42, good for a four-game lead in the NL West over the Los Angeles Dodgers.
“The one word that comes to mind when I think of this is contagious,” Bryant said. “We’re working the ball through the middle, we’re not letting the starter steal strikes from the very first pitch and we’re ready to go right when the bell rings. It’s really fun to be a part of.”
Jonathan Villar hit his 14th home run for the third-place Mets, who dropped 3 1/2 games behind NL East-leading Atlanta. New York (59-59) has lost four straight and fell to .500 for the first time since May 6.
“Overall I like how our offense was, even though we failed to deliver again with runners in scoring position,” manager Luis Rojas said. “We just have to go out and play our game. We can’t do more than that. We can’t go outside our game and think of our record or standing-wise.”
Bryant’s two-run homer off Miguel Castro (3-4) in the fifth inning was his first since Aug. 1 — his first game with the Giants after being acquired from the Cubs at the trade deadline — and gave San Francisco a 4-3 lead.
Bryant connected again in the seventh as part of back-to-back home runs off Trevor May. Belt led off the inning with his 16th of the season.
“Even some of the balls that (Bryant) was striking in the air, he’s either just off the end or maybe just a tiny bit in,” Giants manager Gabe Kapler said. “He had really good, aggressive passes and kind of knew a quality game like this was coming for him. We needed it.”
The Mets took a 3-2 lead in the fifth on Pete Alonso’s two-run triple and Dominic Smith’s sacrifice fly off Gausman (12-5).
The right-hander looked shaky for a second straight outing but had seven strikeouts in five innings to beat the Mets for the first time in four career starts. He allowed five hits and three runs.
“This was the best we’ve seen him in quite some time,” Kapler said. “The fastball had a ton of life on it and the velocity was up. The split was much better. His mechanics were good.”
Jake McGee pitched the ninth for his 26th save.
With the Mets trailing 7-3, Villar homered in the eighth after J.D. Davis reached on an infield single against Tyler Rogers.
“We just came up short,” said Davis, who had three hits. “We were right there. We just need to keep grinding. It’s the only thing we can do.”
The Giants chased starter Rich Hill with five consecutive hits in the fourth. The left-hander, who allowed six hits and two runs in 3 2/3 innings, is winless in five outings with the Mets.
After playing late Sunday night in New York, the Mets flew across the country and arrived at their San Francisco hotel at 4:30 a.m. Monday. Rojas said scheduling later buses allowed for more rest, and players were urged to pay extra attention to their hydration and sleep. The team still took batting practice because some players hadn’t been to Oracle Park and needed to get a feel for the field ahead of first pitch.
FAN ON THE FIELD
A fan ran onto the field in the ninth inning and jogged over near the Mets bench before heading to the mound where he pretended to go into a windup before being taken down by several security guards.
The Mets called up catcher Patrick Mazeika and RHP Trevor Williams from Triple-A Syracuse. RHP Geoff Hartlieb was optioned down.
Mets: SS Javier Báez (back spasms) fielded grounders before the game and the team sounds confident he will be ready to return soon. Báez is eligible to come off the injured list Sunday. … Jacob deGrom’s elbow inflammation is improving but the Mets plan on sticking to a two-week shutdown for the right-hander. … C Tomas Nido was placed on the 10-day IL with a sprained left thumb.
Giants RHP Logan Webb (6-3, 2.96 ERA) has won five consecutive decisions dating to May 11. Mets RHP Marcus Stroman (8-11, 2.79) faces San Francisco for the first time since 2016. Stroman ended a three-start skid in his previous outing when he beat the Nationals.
More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/tag/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports