Cabrera's 2 homers highlight Mets' rout of Cubs

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[July 02, 2016]  NEW YORK -- For New York Mets right-hander Jacob deGrom, waiting through two rain delays, and until the first day of July spilled into the second, was a small price to pay after going more than two months without a victory.

DeGrom earned his first win since April 30 by throwing five solid innings Friday night, when the Mets hit five homers on their way to a 10-2 rout of the Chicago Cubs in a game delayed three times by rain at Citi Field.

DeGrom opened the game with two hitless innings and was trotting out to the mound for the top of the third with a 2-0 lead -- courtesy of back-to-back homers by James Loney and Asdrubal Cabrera in the bottom of the second -- when umpires waved the players off the field at 7:52 PM, moments before heavy rains arrived.

Manager Terry Collins said deGrom would go back out if the game resumed before 9 PM, but as the rain continued to pelt Citi Field, deGrom began to wonder if Mother Nature would extend his winless streak.

"I was starting to get worried that I wasn't going to be able to go back out there," deGrom said. "And I really wanted to, because I felt good warming up and then the first couple innings."

But the tarp was pulled off at 8:48 p.m. and the game resumed with deGrom pitching to opposing pitcher Jason Hammel at exactly 9 p.m.

"He was throwing pretty good," Collins said. "So he said he could go back out. And to be honest, we needed him to give us a couple more innings."

The Mets ended up giving deGrom a lot more support than usual. New York scored just two runs in deGrom's 35 innings on the mound in June but piled on Hammel following the delay.

Loney hit a two-run double in the third and rookie Brandon Nimmo hit a three-run homer in the fourth. It was the first major-league home run for Nimmo, who became an instant folk hero in New York for the enthusiasm he displayed in scoring the winning run in Thursday's 4-3 win over the Cubs.

Nimmo received a curtain call Friday and was still sporting an ear-to-ear grin after the game.

"I was floating around the bases there -- I didn't know what I was doing," Nimmo said "All I knew is I saw the ball go (over the fence) when I was just before second base. That was just an ecstatic feeling."

The Mets finally chased Hammel in the fifth when Yoenis Cespedes homered and Loney singled before Cabrera hit a two-run homer to right to extend the Mets' lead to 10-1. It was the fourth two-homer game of Cabrera's career and his first since May 6, 2013.

The 10 runs allowed were a career-high for Hammel, who gave up nine hits and two walks while striking out three over four innings. His ERA soared from 2.58 to 3.45.

"I'm just going to let this one disappear," Hammel said. "I'm almost lost for words just because of how bad it was.

"Mother Nature is Mother Nature. You can't do anything about that. DeGrom faced the same thing and did fine."

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Mets shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera (13) is congratulated in the dugout by New York Mets center fielder Yoenis Cespedes (52) after hitting a solo home run against the Chicago Cubs during the second inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

DeGrom allowed only one hit through five innings -- Kris Bryant hit a solo homer with one out in the fourth -- before allowing consecutive singles to Albert Almora and Matt Szczur leading off the sixth. The rains returned after Szczur's hit and the umpires again motioned for the players to leave the field.

That finally ended the night for deGrom, who walked one and struck out seven. He was 0-4 in his previous 10 starts despite a 3.13 ERA.

The only bit of suspense remaining once play resumed again following a 40-minute delay was Loney's pursuit of his first career cycle. He grounded out to first in the sixth and eighth innings.

Loney, who began the season in the minor leagues in the San Diego Padres organization, is batting .297 in 29 games for the Mets since he was acquired to replace the injured Lucas Duda on May 28.

"James has played very, very well for us," Collins said. "We're lucky that he was available."

The Mets (42-37) have outscored the Cubs 14-5 in winning the first two games of the four-game series. New York scored just 13 runs in its six games prior to Thursday.

Addison Russell had a sacrifice fly in the seventh for the Cubs (51-28), who have lost eight of 12.
 


NOTES: Mets 3B David Wright, who underwent neck surgery June 16, spoke before the game and acknowledged he is likely out for the year. Wright, looking several pounds lighter and sporting a beard because he cannot shave until the surgical bandage is taken off the front of his neck, said he is still experiencing limited mobility and can't watch the game in the dugout because he can't make or absorb any sudden movements. ... Mets OF Juan Lagares (left thumb) went 2-for-4 in his fourth rehab game for Double-A Binghamton on Friday and will be activated by the Mets either Saturday or Sunday. ... Cubs manager Joe Maddon said CF Dexter Fowler (right hamstring) isn't expected to come off the disabled list when eligible Monday. ... Cubs 1B Anthony Rizzo went 0-for-4 as his 11-game hitting streak came to an end.

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