PHILADELPHIA — The rain washed away the slope, and a game to forget became a game to remember.
The Mets entered a 46-minute rain delay in the bottom of the sixth inning in a three-run hole and stormed back with clearer skies — and Mark Canha thunder — to steal a 10-9 victory and a series at Citizens Bank Park on Sunday .
Canha homered twice, once in the seventh and again in the ninth, to lift the Mets to a win in which they seemed buried three times. The Mets came back from a 4-0 hole, a 7-4 deficit and an 8-7, ninth-inning ditch that Canha’s bat took care of.
The left fielder stroked a go-ahead, two-run home run to left field against former Yankee David Robertson and added some theatrics to the moment. He flipped his bat far in the air before starting his jog, in which he raised his arms in triumph from first base to second base.
Brandon Nimmo’s ensuing home run provided some insurance that proved important. Edwin Diaz looked shaky in a surprising ninth in which he allowed a run, but he struck out Darick Hall to secure his 28th save.
The Mets, who were coming off their first series loss against an NL East opponent, in Atlanta, responded by taking three of four from the Phillies. The Mets have been dealing with a depleted staff that prompted two club debuts Saturday and two major league debuts Sunday, but they kept winning anyway. Three of the four games against Philadelphia were started by Jose Butto (who debuted Sunday), David Peterson and Trevor Williams.
The Mets (79-44) moved four games up on the Braves, who lost to Houston.
Canha’s blasts made the work of Nate Fisher even more important. The lefty made his major league debut and threw three scoreless innings that bridged the delay.
The Phillies had crept back ahead in the eighth inning against Trevor May, when Jean Segura’s home run tied the contest. May was pitching because he was one of two unused relievers that day or a day earlier. (Diaz was the other and was being saved for the ninth.)
The Mets clawed back following the rain delay in the sixth. Canha uncorked a three-run home run in the seventh to knot a game that had seemed lost in the first inning.
The 26-year-old Fisher, who weathered the fifth, sixth and seventh innings, was the most important pitcher on the night and far better than Butto, whom the Mets were forced to summon for a spot start that went south quickly. The organization’s No. 15 prospect was tagged for four runs in his first major league inning, the biggest hit was a three-run shot from Alec Bohm.
Bhutto surrendered three more runs — off a second three-run homer from Bohm, who finished with a career-high six RBIs — in the fourth inning, concluding a debut in which he allowed seven runs on nine hits and two walks in four innings.
Until Bohm’s second dinger — off an outside fastball that the righty hitter smacked down the right-field line — Butto had settled in, and the Mets had fought their way back for the first time.
They chipped away at a four-run deficit by scoring in the second, third and fourth innings.
In the second, Mets catcher Michael Perez knocked his second two-run single in as many days against Phillies starter Kyle Gibson. In the third, Daniel Vogelbach roped a two-out double to drive in Starling Marte, and an inning later the Mets tied it when Marte’s ground single scored Perez. Both boos and “Let’s go Mets!” rang out from the Philadelphia crowd, but Bohm’s swing would reverse the momentum.
After 96 minor league games, Bhutto probably couldn’t wait for his major league debut. After the first inning, you couldn’t blame him if he couldn’t wait for it to be over.
The first five Phillies reached, which included Bohm’s first blast. Butto needed 21 pitches to record his first out — a strikeout of Bryson Stott — and the Mets already trailed 3-0 by that point. Nick Maton’s single added a fourth Phillies run, and it took 38 pitches for the righty to escape his first major league inning.
Alas, Canha and Fisher ensured he would not receive his first major league loss.