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Alcantara Marlins Look to Bounce Back

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Jeff McNeil connected on a solo home run in the ninth inning to break a tie and lead the New York Mets past the Miami Marlins 2-1 on Monday night.

On the other hand, Sandy Alcantara, Miami's injured Dominican standout pitcher, is confident he will return this season after completing his second bullpen session on Monday.

Miami Slips Away from Wild Card With Defeat

McNeil won a duel between left-handers, connecting on a 1-1 slider thrown by Tanner Scott that reached 89 mph. It was the first earned run allowed by Scott since July 31.

Left-handed hitters had a batting average of just .163 against Scott before Monday. Miami, which marches to a 78-73 record, had its streak of three straight wins snapped, hurting its standing in the National League wild-card race.

The Marlins fell one game behind the Arizona Diamondbacks, with a 79-72 record, a half-game behind the Chicago Cubs, 78-72, and the Cincinnati Reds, who are now with a 79-73 record and in contention for the final two National League wild cards.

The Mets, who have a 70-80 record and are already out of contention, won their second straight game.

Tuesday night will be a showdown of lefties as the Miami Marlins, who are still looking to secure a spot in the National League wild card.

Prior to this season, Garrett had a combined record of 5-10 in 27 appearances, including 26 starts, spread over three seasons.

This year, Garrett has had a remarkable breakthrough, as the Marlins have a 20-9 record when he pitches, which includes 28 starts.

The Marlins have a 1-1 record in Garrett's two appearances against the Mets this season.

In neither game did he get a decision, allowing 15 hits and four runs in seven and two-thirds innings. In his career, Garrett has an 0-1 record with a 4.03 ERA in five appearances against the Mets, including four starts.

Lucchesi, who missed all of last season after elbow surgery, has a 1-0 record with a 0.87 ERA in two career starts against the Marlins.

In his only start in Miami in May 2021, he pitched four innings allowing no runs, with only one hit and no walks, striking out eight batters.

The Marlins, who lost 2-1 in the first game of the series on Monday, rely on the offense of Luis Arráez, Jazz Chisholm Jr. and Jorge Soler.

Alcantara With Hope to Return

The reigning National League Cy Young winner has been out of action since Sept. 6 due to a right forearm flexor injury. Alcantara experienced discomfort while pitching against Washington on September 3.

Alcántara said everything went well for his session of about 20 pitches prior to the series opener against the New York Mets. He used all his pitching options, simulating a game situation.

Alcantara, 28, has been one of the most durable pitchers in the majors for the past four years. Last season he led the majors in innings and complete games, making him Miami's first Cy Young winner.

Prior to his injury, Alcantara had pitched 184 innings and recorded three complete games with a 7-12 record, a 4.14 ERA and 151 strikeouts.

The Dominican pitcher stated that he needs to be confident in the process. He is in good shape and is hopeful that he will be able to pitch again later this year.

Miami began the week in a tie for the final NL wild card spot. Miami manager Skip Schumaker showed his confidence in Alcantara's return by stating that he believes anything is possible.

In addition, Schumaker stressed that Sandy and his physical condition should never be questioned, as he feels great. The team follows a philosophy of taking things one day at a time and staying the course.

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