CINCINNATI, Ohio – The Mets’ magic number is down to one after Lucas Duda smacked a pair of three-run homers and Noah Syndergaard carried a shutout into the eighth inning of a 12-5 pounding of the Reds in Cincinnati.
If the Mets win Saturday night, they will have secured their first playoff berth since 2006. They can also clinch with a Nationals loss.
Syndergaard struck out 11 and blanked the Reds until Brennan Boesch hit a solo homer with two out in the eighth.
The Phillies helped the Mets reduce their magic number by defeating the second-place Nationals, 8-2 in Washington.
The last time the Mets were in position to clinch was in 2008, only to crumble down the stretch. More notably in 2007, the Mets had a 7-game lead with 17 games to go, but collapsed, only to hand over the division title to the Nationals.
Mets play the Reds at 4:10 p.m. at the Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati.