Russell Martin #55 of the New York Yankees celebrates his game winning walk off home run against the New York Mets defeating them 5-4 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of New York City. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Sunday afternoon in the Bronx, the Yankees finished sweeping the Mets when Russell Martin led off the bottom of the ninth inning with a walk-off home run.
Otherwise, they don't have a great deal in common. Not lately, anyway.
Sunday afternoon in the Yankees' new stadium, the Mets went ahead 3-0 in the second inning and still led 3-0 heading to the bottom of the seventh, thanks to Jonathan Niese's six shutout innings.
Then things unraveled. With two outs and nobody aboard, Andruw Jones hit a grounder to third baseman David Wright, who threw wildly to first base. And given that reprieve, the Yankees immediately made the score 3-2 on Russell Martin's home run. Niese did retire Jayson Nix to end the inning and preserve the Mets' slim lead.
In the bottom of the eighth, though, the Yankees strung together four straight singles to go ahead 4-3.
In the top of the ninth, with Yankees closer Rafael Soriano on the mound, Lucas Duda led off with a double and Ike Davis -- with his first big hit since early in 2011 -- also doubled to chase home Duda with the game-tying run. When Soriano couldn't get out of trouble, Boone Logan eventually entered the game and retired two Mets to snuff out the rally.
Russ Martin led off the bottom of the ninth against giant Mets reliever Jon Rauch. And on a 3-2 count, Martin launched one of Rauch's sliders over the left-field fence for his second homer of the game, this time a game-winner.
And thus, the Yankees swept the Mets in their three-game series. The Yankees are just a half-game out of first place in the American League East, the Mets now 4½ games out in the National League East. What's more, the Yankees now have the best run differential (+40) in their division, while the Mets' run differential (-19) suggests their record (32-29) is something of a mirage.
Before the season, everyone figured the Yankees would finish the season at the top of the standings, the Mets somewhere near the bottom. After this weekend, everyone's looking pretty smart.