Walker homers twice, deGrom pitches deep, Mets top Bucs 8-1

Neil Walker homered twice in his return to his hometown, Jacob deGrom gave New York’s bullpen a needed rest and the Mets beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 8-1 on Friday night.


Walker, who grew up in Pittsburgh and played seven seasons for the Pirates before being traded to New York in December 2015, finished 3 for 5 with four RBIs. He hit a two-run shot off Chad Kuhl (1-5) in the third and added a solo blast to right-center in the fifth.

DeGrom (4-1) became the first Mets starter to get an out in the eighth inning since last June, pitching 8 1/3 innings and giving up a run with 10 strikeouts and one walk. DeGrom also had two of New York’s 12 hits.

Gregory Polanco returned from the disabled list to collect two of Pittsburgh’s six hits, including a solo home run in the fourth.

Kuhl failed to make it past the fifth inning for his seventh consecutive start. He gave up five runs in 4 1/3 innings and hasn’t won since…

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