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Tomás Nido hits first home run of 2022

After 85 games, and 242 at-bats, Nido hit his long-awaited first home run of the year, putting a bow on the Mets’ 9-3 win over the Marlins on Sunday at loanDepot park, pushing their division lead back up to a full game over the Braves — who played in Seattle late Sunday — in the National League East.

In the ninth inning, in his 243rd at-bat of the season, the Mets’ catcher turned around a 94 mph fastball at the top of the zone from reliever Tommy Nance and launched it 410 feet to dead center field, easily over a leaping JJ Bleday, who never really came close to robbing it at all.

“Tomás Nido has done it!” said an exultant Gary Cohen on the call. “Nido gets the monkey off his back, and he puts the icing on the cake for New York.”

As Nido rounded second base, he allowed himself one extra glance out to center field and let out a celebratory whoop. In the dugout, Pete Alonso and Francisco Lindor high-fived, with Alonso pounding the railing in celebration and Lindor leaning over it, pumping his fist in the air. Daniel Vogelbach and Chris Bassitt high-fived, too, and pointed at each other, as if they knew this was about to happen.

But when Nido finished his home run trot and returned to the dugout … crickets. It was like the party in the dugout was never there.

Nido got one of the longest silent treatments you’ll ever see from his Mets teammates. He didn’t let that stop him from celebrating.

As he walked through the Mets’ vacated bench, Nido high-fived the air and yelled: “Yes! Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes! Woooooo!”

He spread out his arms like airplane wings. He flexed. Then he sprinted down the dugout steps and disappeared into the tunnel. None of his teammates spoke to him the whole time.

“That was fun,” Nido said after the game. “It did take me almost a whole year, so … it was warranted.”

When he returned and started to put on his catcher’s gear for the bottom of the ninth, they were still up on the dugout steps, staring out onto the field. Finally, they broke — Bassitt sprayed Nido with a water bottle like it was champagne, and Alonso and the rest of the Mets made their way over to him with congratulatory hugs and head rubs.

“That’s as long a silent treatment as I’ve seen for a while,” manager Buck Showalter said. “That’s cruel. Lindor grabbed me — I said, ‘No, I can’t do that. I’m the manager.’

“That was a long one. But he’s been around — he knew what they were doing. But they held it for-ever. I got to thinking they weren’t gonna do it. I don’t know — I’ve never had that issue. If I hit a home run, by god, everybody better be at the top step.”

Nido’s last home run was well over a year ago, back on May 25, 2021. All told, that put him on a 123-game homerless streak before Sunday.

His first home run of 2022 capped a three-hit day, one of Nido’s best of the season. He also doubled, walked, drove in three runs and scored three times. Nido and Brandon Nimmo bookended the Mets’ lineup with huge games — Nido with a homer, double and three RBIs from the No. 9 spot, Nimmo with a homer, double and three RBIs out of the leadoff spot.

But it was Nido who got to wear the Mets’ player-of-the-game sombrero in the clubhouse after Sunday’s win. Nimmo was happy to cede it to him.

“We’ve all been waiting,” Nimmo said. “Nido’s been stinging the ball really well, and so we’ve all been waiting for it to happen. We’re really happy that he could get his first home run today. That’s why he got the sombrero. So it’s a good day.”

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