Lindor’s homer lifts Mets after dugout exchange with McNeil

NEW YORK — Francisco Lindor hit a tying, two-run homer in the seventh inning after an apparently heated exchange with teammate Jeff McNeil in the dugout tunnel, and the New York Mets rallied to beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 5-4 Friday night.

New York walked off with a victory when designated runner Pete Alonso scored on pinch-hitter Patrick Mazeika’s fielder’s choice.

A day after snapping a 0-for-26 slide with a ninth-inning single Thursday in St. Louis, Lindor produced his biggest moment since signing a $341 million, 10-year deal with the Mets. He tied the game by hitting a 2-2 changeup from left-hander Caleb Smith.

The blast came a half-inning after shortstop Lindor and second baseman McNeil combined to misplay a popup. After the top of the seventh, teammates rushed into the tunnel adjacent to the dugout. Lindor acknowledged after the game that he and McNeil were having a disagreement — he claimed the pair saw a rat in the tunnel, and he was objecting to McNeil’s suggestion that it was a racoon.

After rounding the bases on his homer, Lindor exchanged fist bumps with Tomas Nido, who drew a walk to start the inning and Michael Conforto, who was waiting in the on-deck circle. Conforto was among the first who flew toward the tunnel during the exchange.

Shortly after Lindor’s second homer as a Met, billionaire owner Steve Cohen tweeted: “That was BIG”.

Mazeika softly hit a 2-2 pitch from Stefan Crichton to the first base-side of the mound to score Alonso.

Before his homer, Lindor heard boos when he flied out in the fifth with a runner on first. Lindor went 2 for 5 and produced his second multi-hit game as a Met. His other was April 14 against Philadelphia.

Aaron Loup (1-0) tossed a scoreless 10th for the win.