NEW YORK – Maybe this is the homestand that turns the Mets season around.A week that began with rumors about Mickey Callaway's job security and controversy over Robinson Cano's hustle ended with the streaking Mets back at .500.Zack Wheeler pitched into the eighth, Edwin Diaz survived a chaotic ninth and the Mets hung on to beat Detroit, 4-3, on Sunday. It was their sixth win in seven games and came from another unlikely hero. Adeiny Hechavarría hit his second home run in three games to spark the latest comeback.After coming back to Queens in disarray, the Mets (26-26) can fly to Los Angeles feeling confident."This week has been fun," said Dominic Smith, after another two-hit game. "We've been talking about our potential and what we can do and what we're capable of doing. I felt like this week is a testament of that."
The Mets were in need of something positive, after being swept by Miami. They took advantage of two weak teams, sweeping the Nationals and then taking two out of three from Detroit.Diaz struck out JaCoby Jones on 10 pitches to end the game, with the potential tying and go-ahead runs in scoring position. The Mets closer issued a four-pitch walk to lead off the inning and gave up a single to Brandon Dixon, but got Jones looking to earn his 13 save in 14 chances."I was excited," Diaz said. "I knew that this was a big series for us to win. They played a great series the entire time."Wheeler went a season-high 7 1/3 innings, allowing three earned runs and striking out eight. Nick Castellanos took him deep in the first inning and brought in a pair of runs two innings later, but Wheeler locked in from there. He retired 13 straight at one point to save the bullpen, which was taxed by Saturday's extra-inning affair."(It was important) how deep he pitched in the game with the lack of bullpen we had today, because of the all the craziness that's been going on," Callaway said. "To pitch into the eighth is unbelievable. That's stepping it up today."The turning point in Sunday's game came in the bottom of the fourth. It started with a leadoff double from Dominic Smith and single by Wilson Ramos with one out. Todd Frazier came to bat with a huge hole to the right side and beat the shift with a push bunt to plate a run.
"I think it sparked us," Frazier said. "It got the guys going a little bit. I see the shift a lot and I've been working with Jim Riggleman (on situational hitting)."The knockout blow came from Hechavarría, who was called up from Triple-A Syracuse on May 3. Known more for his defense, Hechavarría came through with a two-out, three-run home run that gave the Mets their 4-3 lead."It's important for us to come in and contribute," Hechavarría said. "That's what we're focused on doing. We came up for a specific reason. I don't care if it's hitting or running or making a defensive play coming off the bench. I'm here to help the team in any way possible."
The theme throughout the homestand was the Mets' ability to win with depth. Backups were pressed into duty after injuries to Cano and Jeff McNeil among others, but the Mets' performance didn't suffer. They got go-ahead home runs from Carlos Gomez and Tomas Nido earlier in the week and a pair of blasts from the light-hitting Hechavarría."We've been harping on our depth all offseason, trying to build it the best we could," Callaway said. "It kept things from spiraling out of control."