From here on out, every single game remaining on the Mets' schedule is an important one.
And just as it looked like Wednesday's game against the Rockies was slipping out of their grasp, the Mets rallied for four runs in the top of the ninth inning to come away with a 7-4 win over the Rockies, winning two of three in Denver.
The inning began with a leadoff walk from pinch-hitter Wilson Ramos. JD Davis quickly singled into right, moving pinch-runner Juan Lagares to third. Brandon Nimmo then singled through the right side to tie the game 4-4 and keep the gears in motion.
After a Jeff McNeil walk loaded the bases with no outs, Pete Alonso showed patience, walking on four pitches to force in the go-ahead run.
"Kind of every at-bat is high-leverage, regardless of if there's guys on base or not my job is the same, to be disciplined in the zone and capitalize on pitches that are drive-able," said Alonso, who also blasted his 49th home run of the season earlier in the game. "For me, I had to be extra locked in because it was obviously a double play situation with the bases loaded, and I just wanted to do the best I could to get ball over the middle of the plate. … It was a high-leverage situation but my job remains the same.
"They don't want to have to grove a fastball to him when they fall behind, so they continue to try to make pitches," Mickey Callaway explained. "I think Buck Showalter walked Barry Bonds with the bases loaded. I think that's going through their mind, like 'You know what, I'm going to make tough pitches and at least it won't be multiple runs that they're going to score.' He puts the fear in guys, and he should because he's a good hitter. That allows him to be a little more patient in those situations when a base isn't open."
A Robinson Cano double play ball brought in the Mets sixth run, and with a runner on third and two outs for Seth Lugo, the Rockies could see their way out of the inning without further damage.
Lugo pitched a scoreless eighth for the Mets, and with a two run lead and two outs in the inning, Callaway elected to leave Lugo in to hit.
The move paid off as he lined a single into center field, scoring the Mets' seventh run. Lugo closed the game out for the Mets, striking out three in two scoreless frames, and afterwards he spoke about staying in to hit.
"Well I saw (Rockies pitcher Joe Harvey) miss around Pete's face, and with those shadows, I wasn't too comfortable up there the first couple pitches," Lugo said with a laugh. "I was just staying short and seeing what happened. I've kind of been waiting for an at-bat all year, but I tried not to let it get to me and stay short and see what happened."
Wednesday's effort was yet another resilient win from a group that has refused to say day this season. Just as it looked like the Wild Card was getting to far out of reach, the Mets have refused to pack up and quit.
They're now 3.5 games back of the second Wild Card spot, though just 10 games remain on their schedule.