Jacob deGrom pitched three perfect innings before exiting with right shoulder soreness, but the Mets' bullpen finished the job as New York earned a 6-3 victory over the visiting Chicago Cubs on Wednesday.
Seven New York pitchers combined on a three-hitter, and the Mets will look to complete a four-game series sweep on Thursday.
The Mets improved to 14-2 in their past 16 home games, but the latest victory was clouded by deGrom leaving early due to injury for his second straight start.
deGrom got eight strikeouts while retiring all nine hitters he faced on 51 pitches. In the third inning, he appeared to grimace while throwing a pitch to Eric Sogard. When the Mets batted in the bottom half of the third, Sean Reid-Foley began warming up.
The Mets held a 3-0 lead when Reid-Foley (2-0) replaced deGrom to start the fourth inning.
On Friday against the San Diego Padres, deGrom was lifted due to right flexor tendinitis, and an MRI on that injury came back clean.
New York's Kevin Pillar, who also hit a solo homer in the fifth, opened the scoring with an RBI double in the second. deGrom followed with a run-scoring single, giving him six RBIs on the season.
Dominic Smith homered in the third to put the Mets up 3-0.
After Anthony Rizzo socked a solo homer off Reid-Foley in the top of the fourth, the Mets scored twice in the bottom of the inning. Francisco Lindor drew a bases-loaded walk, and Smith produced an RBI groundout.
Pillar homered with one out in the fifth to make it 6-1.
Rafael Ortega hit a two-run homer in the ninth for the Cubs, who struck out 16 times.
Chicago's Robert Stock (0-1) made his first career start after 52 relief appearances with the San Diego Padres and Boston Red Sox in the previous three seasons. He allowed five runs on four hits in four innings. Stock issued six walks to go along with three strikeouts.
After Reid-Foley worked two innings, Mets relievers Aaron Loup, Miguel Castro and Trevor May each tossed a scoreless inning. In the ninth, Drew Smith allowed Ortega's homer and a base hit to Sergio Alcantara before Edwin Diaz entered.
Diaz retired pinch hitter Willson Contreras on a sinking liner to center fielder Mason Williams for his 14th save in 15 chances.
--Field Level Media